This classic Gothic novel by Nathaniel Hawthorne follows the Pyncheon family in pre- and post-colonial New England and their ancestral home; the titular House of the Seven Gables.
Published in 1851 at the height of the Gothic literature craze, Hawthorne's book follows two time frames: one involves flashbacks to the late 17th century, while the other is set in the author's present day of the mid-19th century. We witness the events leading up to the Salem witch trials, and the construction of a house which came to epitomise the foreboding gloom of late Gothic architecture.
We hear how the very construction of the house was unjust, the land was seized from its rightful owner via cynical accusations of witchcraft. The newly-built mansion is thought to harbour a curse when Colonel Pyncheon dies during its housewarming party. Thereafter this event overshadows the lives of the Pyncheon family members, who begin to feel the house and its grim legacy weigh on their shoulders.
Conceived by Hawthorne as the follow-up to his novel The Scarlet Letter, and the subject of adaptations for the screen and stage ever since, The House of the Seven Gables is presented here complete without abridgement.