Books You Have Always Meant to Read: The Scarlet Letter

It contributes greatly towards a man’s moral and intellectual health, to be brought into habits of companionship with individuals unlike himself, who care little for his pursuits, and whose sphere and abilities he must go out of himself to appreciate.

Sage words indeed. And how appropriate that they are taken from the The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne which is the final book in our series Books You Have Always Meant to Read. This classic work will be the topic of a lively discussion lead by Bethany Reid from Everett Community College on Wednesday, May 23rd starting at 7 p.m. in the Main Library auditorium.

Set in a time and place seemingly quite different from our own, seventeenth century Puritan New England, the characters of The Scarlet Letter might at first seem like strangers. But read a little further and you just might find a connection with one of these characters “unlike yourself”.

There is the long suffering, but iron willed, Hester Prynne who is forced to wear the scarlet letter.  Or maybe the conflicted, to put it mildly, Arthur Dimmesdale with all his self-inflicted wounds will strike a chord. And for those of you more inclined to darkness, there is “the leech”, a.k.a. Roger Chillingworth, who might just have a point or two.

Whatever your preference, come to the library on Wednesday evening to see what all the fuss is about.

1 thought on “Books You Have Always Meant to Read: The Scarlet Letter

  1. The Scarlet Letter is one my favourite books! There IS something charming about the long lines that mould into one another, the ample use of the semicolon and the old English jargon! And just when you get the hang of it, you actually understand a line and THEN you realise just what sheer brilliance EVERY word is. God, that is some writing, isn’t it!


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