by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Another Classic ticked off my list. This one was written in 1851 and very definitely has the tone of that era of writing. Very verbose and slow moving, with no real interaction between characters.
The story is more about the house than the people, though it tells the story of several generations, mostly of the Maule and Pyncheon families. One of the Maule ancestors was accused of witchcraft and executed, and the house was taken and ended up in the hands of the Pyncheons, though the Maule relatives were the rightful inheritors.
There is a curse, a crime mystery and two centuries of superstition attached to the house. The plot was interesting, but I found it very slow reading. I never felt really involved with any of the characters because the style of writing kept them impersonal.
Still, I'm glad I read it. I've seen the house when I was on a trip to Boston and Cambridge in Massachusetts and I can see how it would inspire a story. It was actually built for the Turner family in 1668, so the story is completely fiction. This is one for those who really love 19th century stories.