Historical Book Review
The Scarlet Letter
The Letter A
“On the breast of her gown, in fine red cloth, surrounded with an elaborate embroidery and fantastic flourished of gold-thread, appeared the letter A.”- This, in truth, is a quote that sums up the main storyline in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. At first glance, a book such as this is classified as a boring and difficult read due to the use of old, descriptive language and a plot that takes place long ago at the start of the New World. But, surprisingly enough, regardless of its difficulty, the book is actually quite intriguing once the plot comes fully into play, (and when you have a dictionary by your side to define every other word.) This story is an up and down rollercoaster containing plotlines of adultery, its consequences, and the overall difficulties that come with living in a strict Puritan society. Overall, The Scarlet Letter is the type of book your parents and teachers would tell you to not judge by its cover. And, in a way, that old saying comes into play in the story itself when people judge Hester Prynne by the letter A stuck to her chest for the whole world to see and gape at.
The Scarlet Letter takes place in the newly settled city of Boston in the 17th century. It revolves around Hester Prynne’s life, a woman who is being punished for having committed adultery at the very start of the story. Being the strong and persistent woman she is, she refuses to reveal her accomplice and father of her daughter, Pearl, to the staring community before her. Thus, she is condemned by magistrates to forever wear the letter ‘A’ on her chest for the sake of constantly reminding both herself and the people around her of the crime committed. Her husband, now known as a physician named Roger Chillingworth, who has finally officially came to Boston, returns just in time to see his wife on the scaffold. From then on, Chillingworth makes it his full on duty to...