Portrait Of A Lady
The story of the spirited Isabel Archer, who becomes the subject of scheming by two fellow Americans when they learn of her inheritance, has been described as one of Henry James` finest novels. Isabel's independence at first seems assured by a surprise legacy from her uncle but, ironically, her wealth only serves to attract the scheming Madame Merle and the cruelly possessive Gilbert Osmond. The revelations that follow Isabel's marriage to Osmond are devastating as she is forced to confront the conflict between society's demand for propriety and her own fierce sense of independence.
Henry James (1843-1916), the son of the religious philosopher Henry James Sr. and brother of the psychologist and philosopher William James, published many important novels including Daisy Miller, The Wings of the Dove, The Golden Bowl, and The Ambassadors.