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Download The House of the Seven Gables Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The House of the Seven Gables Audiobook, by Nathaniel Hawthorne Click for printable size audiobook cover
2.88 out of 52.88 out of 52.88 out of 52.88 out of 52.88 out of 5 2.88 (72 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Nathaniel Hawthorne Narrator: Anthony Heald Publisher: Craig Black Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2008 ISBN: 9781455189755
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In a sleepy little New England village stands a dark, weather-beaten, many-gabled house. This brooding mansion is haunted by a centuries-old curse that casts the shadow of ancestral sin upon the last four members of the distinctive Pyncheon family of Salem.

The greed and haughty pride of the Pyncheon family through the generations is mirrored in the gloomy decay of their seven-gabled mansion, where the family’s enfeebled and impoverished relations now live. Mysterious deaths threaten the living. Musty documents nestle behind hidden panels carrying the secret of the family’s salvation—or its downfall.

A brilliant intertwining of the popular, the symbolic, and the historical, Hawthorne’s Gothic Romance is a powerful exploration of personal and national guilt, a work that Henry James declared “the closest approach we are likely to have to the Great American Novel.”

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A large and generous production, pervaded with that vague hum, that indefinable echo, of the whole multitudinous life of man, which is the real sign of a great work of fiction.”

    Henry James

  • “The greed and arrogant pride of the novel’s Pyncheon family through the generations is mirrored in the gloomy decay of their seven-gabled mansion.”

    Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature

  • “Hawthorne’s tale of ancestral retribution and an unsettled home comes to life with Anthony Heald’s rendition…With his crisp enunciation and slightly raspy timbre, Heald tackles the more interesting scenes with consistency and energy, improving one’s overall experience of this classic work.”

    AudioFile

  • “Hawthorne’s tale about the brooding hold of the past over the present is a complex one, twisting and turning its way back through many generations of a venerable New England family.”

    Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Frank Taranto | 2/14/2014

    " An interesting hisory of one family and their house. Not as interesting as the Scarlett letter , but Hawthorne shows New England well. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ariel | 2/13/2014

    " So the language is historically stilted and difficult to get through, but I was SO terrified by the last chapter or so. Maybe it was circumstances, I don't know. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kiki | 2/8/2014

    " Reading this classic literally took me months to get through it! Hawthorne's style of writing in verbose and heavy handed, but given total concentration is very descriptive. i usually read contemporary books like this one, leaning towards character development, rather than plot development, but in this case, this is am extreme example of that kind of novel. Plot development is plodding and takes 95% of the book to reach the climax. However, the clever plot twist at the end does produce what I'm sure was Hawthorne's desired intent--a big surprise. I'm thinking of revisiting Hawthorne's The Scarlet letter...next year! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barb Bailey | 2/7/2014

    " Read it, been there, done that....not a real impressive book. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Karen Walton | 2/7/2014

    " Struggled to finish. Did not really like this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maggie | 2/2/2014

    " yes. evidently i love old literature. is it an acquired taste? or do i just see the continuity from then-to-now and how consistent human nature is? "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Abby | 1/31/2014

    " This is an odd book, and gets a little dry in several parts. However, it definitely picks up towards the end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Samefish | 1/25/2014

    " Not quite what I was expecting after scarlet letter, gently ticking along "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kiersten | 1/16/2014

    " It was pretty good. A little spooky and mysterious, which I liked. Hawthorne is a beautiful writer but can be a bit too wordy for me at times. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Keely | 1/11/2014

    " Hawthorne is the equivalent of nudging someone and winking without actually thinking of anything interesting, risque, beautiful, or even useful. It is sad that a man with such a voluminous writing ability was seemingly devoid of any notion of what to do with it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 A.D. Blackburn | 1/6/2014

    " Nathaniel Hawthorne made more mention of graves and tombstones than Poe. It's true. This book is possibly what put him over the top. His juxtaposition between the "Old world" and the "new" is blatantly evident in the personalities of the characters "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mjsmout | 1/5/2014

    " A good story, but a little wordy for my taste. Hawthorne does like to use his big words and explain every detail. If he would only do it in conversation it would be more interesting. I also found a great many errors in proofreading. Don't publishers or editors proofread any more? "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sharon | 1/5/2014

    " Sadly, I stopped this book before even finishing it. I had been trying to read it for a long time and it just wasn't getting anywhere. It spent too much time talking about the surroundings and not getting anywhere in a plt. I didn't have the patience for it right now. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stacie | 1/3/2014

    " The story line was okay but the author drives me batty. He gives too much detail with many things and spends so much time doing it you can easily forget where the story line is going. He is a big windbag. This is the second book of his I have read and I am pretty sure I won't be reading any more. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 KJ Luepke | 1/2/2014

    " It was slow at first but I loved the second half of the book. It was really interesting to read an old book that took place in early America. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda K K | 1/1/2014

    " Full of ominous settings, descriptive characters and mysterious occurances, this story was not at all what I thought it might be. Although I thought it to have witchcraft in the 1800s New England as it's theme, it was so much more than that. And, the ending was quite satisfying. A good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jess | 12/20/2013

    " good book overall, hepibzah and clifford live in ancestral house with dagguerrotypist, then cousin phoebe comes and changes everything. annoying cousin jaffery meets a mysterious fate, happy ending. the happy ending was too happy. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nour | 12/19/2013

    " I really like this book and I enjoyed reading it. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Lora Elisabeth | 12/12/2013

    " Got tired of waiting for anything even remotely interesting to happen, so I gave up after around 100 pages. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sarah Payok | 12/6/2013

    " I like Nathaniel Hawthorne. I love gothic stories. I HATED The House of Seven Gables. Since this makes no sense to me, I'm giving this book two stars instead of one, because I can only assume that somewhere along the line in this book, I missed something important. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Book Him Danno | 11/30/2013

    " I should read this again, its been since high school and next week we are touring the house near Boston. In HS I thought it was boring, but I was pretty young at the time, maybe it aged better or maybe I did. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Angie | 11/28/2013

    " I don't know how I even finished this one. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Cassie Norton | 9/28/2013

    " It was okay. Parts of it were very slow moving, but I suppose an entire chapter describing one thing is to be expected with Hawthorne. The thing that really disappointed me was the ending. I still think the house should have burned down. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Catherine | 8/14/2013

    " One of the most difficult books I've ever had to read. Nothing much happens... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jo | 5/3/2013

    " I couldn't finish it. It dragged on and Hawthorne was overly descriptive in describing EVERYTHING. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Meg Mims | 10/7/2012

    " Dry as the sand that refuses to be brushed off after a day at the beach. Bleah. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Cathy Simonds | 9/23/2012

    " I have tried to read this for years. I generally like Hawthorne, but I've never been able to read more than a few chapters of this. Well I perservered this time! Finished it. Disappointing. Boring. The Pinchots can keep their house and their secrets. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Book Him Danno | 6/19/2012

    " I should read this again, its been since high school and next week we are touring the house near Boston. In HS I thought it was boring, but I was pretty young at the time, maybe it aged better or maybe I did. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Wachlin007 Hotmail | 5/19/2012

    " I thought this book was pretty boring, it involves an old family curse and what the family does to get rid of it. I wanted a bit more action. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Talkingtowalls | 1/25/2012

    " The fact that I can't really remember weather I liked this book or not leads me to the conclusion that I probably didn't care much either way. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laurie | 1/10/2012

    " It was a good story, but I kept falling asleep every time I started reading. So it took me a VERY LONG TIME to finish the book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Christi | 12/4/2011

    " Every time I read this, I definitely read deeper into the complexity of Hawthorne's story. I really enjoyed it, and loved the vivid characters and unique story that Hawthorne manages to weave into a tale surrounding a house. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathie Hagen | 11/4/2011

    " I bought this in Salem MA at the House of the Seven Gables in April 2006. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Lisa | 8/24/2011

    " can't do it . . . cannot finish this book :( "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Anita Williamson | 7/20/2011

    " Ok. I liked the Scarlett Letter better. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Margaret | 5/19/2011

    " I read the Kindle edition, Hawthorne's House of the Seven Gables (bargain edition typeset for the Kindle) Dec 2008. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. I liked the old fashioned English. The story was a real page turner, I couldn't wait to get back to the story every time I had to stop. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 David | 5/17/2011

    " I've tried reading this about eighteen times. Still haven't finished it. My wife says that this is her history teacher's favorite book of all time. Her second favorite book? Probably something equally dull. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Emily | 5/11/2011

    " Solid 3 1/2 - 4 stars.
    Loads of description and not as haunting as I would have liked, but still really good.
    Extremely, extremely well written though a bit heavy handed.
    I feel smarter after reading it :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bekah | 4/14/2011

    " I had to read this for school, and surprisingly enough it wasn't terrible! The descriptions were interesting and the style of the narration made it interesting. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elizabeth | 3/31/2011

    " Almost done with this - so good, and either I've forgotten or I've never read it before. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Danielle | 3/29/2011

    " Another great story by Hawthorne, full of Gothic elements and all types of social commentary. The only reason this one isn't getting a 5 star rating is that the ending was weak and appeared to negate the overall societal themes of the novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda K | 3/25/2011

    " Full of ominous settings, descriptive characters and mysterious occurances, this story was not at all what I thought it might be. Although I thought it to have witchcraft in the 1800s New England as it's theme, it was so much more than that. And, the ending was quite satisfying. A good read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Reginashouse | 3/22/2011

    " Loved it! The Great American Novel! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lisa | 3/19/2011

    " I should read this again, its been since high school and next week we are touring the house near Boston. In HS I thought it was boring, but I was pretty young at the time, maybe it aged better or maybe I did. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Diane | 3/18/2011

    " A classic, I am told. I read it in HS and reread because we went to the house on vacation last year.
    Rereading did not make it any more interesting that I remember from years. ago. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Bonnie | 3/1/2011

    " Hmm, not my favorite, although I want to head down to Salem and tour the house now! "

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About the Author
Author Nathaniel Hawthorne

Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804–1864) was born in Salem, Massachusetts, and made his ambition to be a writer while still a teenager. He graduated from Bowdoin College in Maine, where the poet Longfellow was also a student, and spent several years traveling in New England and writing short stories before his best known novel, The Scarlet Letter, was published in 1850. His writing was not at first financially rewarding, and he worked as measurer and surveyor in the Boston and Salem Custom Houses. In 1853 he was sent to Liverpool as American consul and then lived in Italy before returning to the United States in 1860, where he died in his sleep four years later.

About the Narrator

Anthony Heald, an Audie Award–winning narrator, has earned Tony nominations and an Obie Award for his theater work; appeared in television’s Law & Order, The X-Files, Miami Vice, and Boston Public; and starred as Dr. Frederick Chilton in the 1991 Oscar-winning film The Silence of the Lambs. Heald has also won ten AudioFile Earphones Awards. He lives in Ashland, Oregon, with his family.