Part fairy tale, part Gothic horror story, Rappaccini’s Daughter is an inspired tale of creation and control. It is published here with two additional short stories by Hawthorne: Young Goodman Brown and A Select Party. With a Foreword by Simon Schama. |
Giovanni Guasconti, a student at the University of Padua, is enchanted to discover a nearby garden of the most exquisite beauty. In it abides a young woman, perhaps the most beautiful Giovanni has ever seen. Yet as he looks out from an upstairs window, he soon learns that the garden—and the matchless Beatrice—are not the work of Mother Nature, but rather the result of a monstrous abomination of creativity. An ingenious biblical parody, the tale’s fantastical quality is brilliantly echoed in the two accompanying short stories: Young Goodman Brown and A Select Party. Read together, they display all Hawthorne’s gifts as a storyteller. Novelist, essayist, and moralist, Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804–1864) is one of America’s greatest writers, best known for his remarkable novel The Scarlet Letter.