Summer Criticism

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Although Summer never became as popular as some of Wharton's other novels, its author was important enough that the novel was widely reviewed when it was published in 1917. Many reviewers praised Wharton for her skillful description and characterization, while others regretted that Summer was overall a slighter work than the previous novels. Reviewers also disagreed about the ending of the novel. Lawrence Gilman, writing for The North American Review, found no satisfaction in Charity's marriage to Mr. Royall, stating that her story "ends grayly, resignedly, with long anonymous years of kindly and terrible amelioration stretching vacantly before her." An unsigned review in The Nation, on the other hand, was among those that celebrated the marriage, stating that "Mrs. Wharton permits, nay, encourages, us to hope a good measure of happiness for them both." H. W. Boynton, a reviewer for The Bookman, agreed, noting that the marriage offers, "we...

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This section contains 569 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Summer Study Guide
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Summer from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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