Ethan Frome

by Edith Wharton

Ethan Frome

Ethan Frome is a tragic novel about the unrequited love between Ethan Frome and his wife's cousin, Mattie Silver.

This novel has elements in common with gothic fiction, realism, modernism, romance, and tragedy.

Source: Wharton, E. (1912). Ethan Frome. New York: Scribner's.

The narrator tells of his first encounter with Ethan Frome in the town of Starkfield, Massachusetts. The narrator seeks information on the reclusive Frome.
Chapter 1
A younger Ethan Frome walks the streets of Starkfield stopping at a dance in the community church. Ethan quietly watches Mattie.
Chapter 2
Ethan approaches Mattie after the dance concludes.
Chapter 3
Ethan thinks about the previous evenings events. Zeena leaves for Bettsbridge.
Chapter 4
The circumstances of Ethan's marriage to Zeena are explained. With Zeena gone for the evening, Mattie prepares dinner for herself and Ethan.
Chapter 5
After dinner, Mattie and Ethan talk. Although she is absent, Zeena's presence is still felt in the house.
Chapter 6
Zeena's return fills Ethan with a sense of foreboding.
Chapter 7
Upon returning, Zeena gives Ethan some unsettling news concerning Mattie.
Chapter 8
Ethan is plagued with indecision and doubt.
Chapter 9
Ethan insists on taking Mattie to the station.
  • Year Published: 1912
  • Language: English
  • Country of Origin: United States of America
  • Readability:
    • Flesch–Kincaid Level: 8.7
  • Word Count: 37,665
  • Genre: Tragedy
  • Keywords: loss, love
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