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Edith Wharton

Book Overview: 

Kate Orme, shocked by the discovery of her fiance's complicity in a tragedy, and by society's willingness to overlook such transgressions, nevertheless marries him. Years later, her son faces a moral crisis similar to the one that showed her his father's moral weakness.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .To the judge? When they're both dead? When everything is at an end? What good could that do?" he groaned.

"Everything is not at an end for you—everything is just beginning. You must clear yourself of this guilt; and there is only one way—to confess it. And you must give back the money."

This seemed to strike him as conclusive proof of her irrelevance. "I wish I had never heard of the money! But to whom would you have me give it back? I tell you she was a waif out of the gutter. I don't believe any one knew her real name—I don't believe she had one."

"She must have had a mother and father."

"Am I to devote my life to hunting for them through the slums of California? And how shall I know when I have found them? It's impossible to make you understand. I did wrong—I did horribly wrong—but that is not the way to repair it."

"What is, then?"

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Community Reviews

I am sorry to report that Sanctuary simply was not of the same stuff that made Age of Innocence and House of Mirth great.

Many have addressed the morality angle behind this book: the main character married a morally deficient man with the hope that she could correct the deficiency in their childr...more

Sanctuary is a novella by Edith Wharton, published in 1903. From what I have read, the plot did not cause any surprises at the time, but today the story seems rather unusual. It is a story which deals with ethics, morality, and family honor. While there is nothing particularly unusual in that, so...more

Kate is happily engaged to Denis. Denis is faced with a moral dilemma and fails to act correctly (in the eyes of Kate). They marry have one child and Kate is determined her son will be of stronger ilk than his father. History repeats and the son faces his own crisis. Does nature, nurture or neith...more

Kate Orme es una mujer joven cuya dicha conyugal se rompe cuando se enfrenta cara a cara con el oscuro secreto que esconde su prometido, Denis Peyton, un hombre de fortuna, pero con un pasado gobernado por las mentiras y por los engaños.

Cuando ambos tienen un hijo y Denis muere, Kate se convence...more

0,4 estrellas

Nature versus nurture underlies the plot of this novella. Kate is about to be married to a wealthy, charming man. However, his morality is weak and he indirectly causes the death of a woman and her son. Kate finds this out and instead of the rose tinted glass future she sees the reality of her ma...more

Hepi topu 90 sayfalık kolay okunan sıradan bir uzun öykü. Aşk, ihtiras, hırs üçgeninde dönen 1900ler Amerikasından bir kesit. Kafa boşaltmak için ataya sıkıştırlanilir, ama okunmaması kayıp olmaz.

I love Edith Wharton. I found this book at a used book sale, and the description on the flap (also the description on Sanctuary's Goodreads site) was intriguing. A dilemma of morality and a woman's honest efforts in conquering it or watching history repeat itself--I bought it and took it home to...more

Do women still do this sort of thing - marry a man they suddenly find out is a very unsavory/immoral character because they want to make sure any child born to this man is raised not to be like his father? And then, once this child is all grown-up, instead of advising him what is right or wrong,...more

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