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The Turn of the Screw - Henry James
The Turn of the Screw
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3.31 80
The Turn of the Screw is a novella (short novel) written by Henry James. Originally published in 1898, it is ostensibly a ghost story. Due to its ambiguous content, it became a favorite text of academics who subscribe to New Criticism. The novella has had differing interpretations, often mutually... show more
The Turn of the Screw is a novella (short novel) written by Henry James. Originally published in 1898, it is ostensibly a ghost story. Due to its ambiguous content, it became a favorite text of academics who subscribe to New Criticism. The novella has had differing interpretations, often mutually exclusive. Many critics have tried to determine the exact nature of the evil hinted at by the story. An unnamed narrator listens to a male friend reading a manuscript written by a former governess whom the friend claims to have known and who is now dead. The manuscript tells the story of how the young governess is hired by a man who has become responsible for his young nephew and niece after the death of their parents. He lives mainly in London and is not interested in raising the children himself. The boy, Miles, is attending a boarding school, while his younger sister, Flora, is living at a country estate in Essex. She is currently being cared for by the housekeeper, Mrs. Grose. The governess's new employer, the uncle of Miles and Flora, gives her full charge of the children and explicitly states that she is not to bother him with communications of any sort. The governess travels to her new employer's country house and begins her duties. Miles soon returns from school for the summer just after a letter arrives from the headmaster stating that he has been expelled. Miles never speaks of the matter, and the governess is hesitant to raise the issue. She fears that there is some horrid secret behind the expulsion, but is too charmed by the adorable young boy to want to press the issue. Soon thereafter, the governess begins to see around the grounds of the estate the figures of a man and woman whom she does not recognize. These figures come and go at will without ever being seen or challenged by other members of the household, and they seem to the governess to be supernatural. She learns from Mrs. Grose that her predecessor, Miss Jessel, and another employee, Peter Quint, had had a sexual relationship with each other and had both died. Prior to their deaths, they spent much of their time with Flora and Miles, and this fact has grim significance for the governess when she becomes convinced that the two children are secretly aware of the presence of the ghosts. Later, Flora leaves the house while Miles plays music for the governess. They notice Flora's absence and go to look for her. The governess and Mrs. Grose find her in a clearing in the wood, and the governess is convinced that she has been talking to Miss Jessel. When she finally confronts Flora, Flora denies seeing Miss Jessel, and demands never to see the governess again. Mrs. Grose takes Flora away to her uncle, leaving the governess with Miles. That night, they are finally talking of Miles' expulsion when the ghost of Quint appears to the governess at the window. The governess shields Miles, who attempts to see the ghost. The governess tells him that he is no longer controlled by the ghost, and then finds that Miles has died in her arms.
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Format: paperback
ISBN: 9781612930992 (1612930999)
Publisher: Tribeca Books
Pages no: 120
Edition language: English
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Community Reviews
Jennifer's Books
Jennifer's Books rated it
3.0 (Audiobook) The Turn of the Screw
aka Words, Words Everywhere. I've read my share of VIctorian Era writing, so I am quite familiar with just how wordy it can be. But this...this was beyond. Honestly, had I been reading this as opposed to listening to it I'd have DNF'd it for sure. Even with the superb narration, there were a few t...
Lora's Rants and Reviews
Lora's Rants and Reviews rated it
2.0 The Turn of the Screw
by Henry James After reading the first couple of chapters, I actually went onto Wikipedia to find out what this story is about. I felt like I had come into the middle of something that hadn't been explained. This is actually not unusual for stories written around the turn of the century. They ha...
Bookish Blerd
Bookish Blerd rated it
2.0 The Turn of the Screw
The only thing I really enjoyed was Emma Thompson's performance. She's what kept me listing (and reading along at some parts). I just didn't get it? It didn't get me? It literally did not pull me into the story or hold my true interest. Perhaps a second reading/listening in the future.
Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents
Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents rated it
3.0 The Turn of the Screw
3.5 starsThis is a perfect ghost story. It slowly and continuously gets more creepy and has that vague way of doing things to keep you guessing even after it's over.
Gatta ci cova
Gatta ci cova rated it
4.0
Lei, vent’anni, figlia di un umile parroco di campagna si reca a Londra dopo aver risposto a un annuncio. Lui, l’inserzionista, è un gentiluomo, scapolo, bello come solo i personaggi dei romanzi possono essere. Ardito, cortese e affascinante. La giovane rimane così colpita dall’uomo che accetta di o...
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