"An inscrutable combination of audacity and innocence"
This unique edition reunites two tales which James intended to be complementary --"Daisy Miller" and "An International Episode." Young Daisy Miller perplexes, amuses, and charms her stiff but susceptible fellow-American, Frederick Winterbourne. Is she innocent or corrupt? Has he lived too long in Europe to judge her properly? Amid the romantic scenery of Lake Geneva and Rome, their lively, precarious relationship develops to a climax in the Coliseum at midnight. The tale gave James his first popular success, yet some compatriots detected treachery in its portrayal of young American womanhood. James responded with "An International Episode," which exposes a couple of English gentlemen to the charm and wit of American sisters in Newport, Rhode Island and then in London.
Read together, these two short masterpieces shed light on each other, demonstrating the range of James's own manners, from sharp satire and buoyant comedy to complex, perhaps even tragic, pathos. Adrian Poole's superb introduction explores James's ironic portrayal of the frictions, negotiations and potential alliances sparked by the new transatlantic world in the closing decades of the nineteenth century. Poole also provides informative notes as well as an appendix on stage and film versions of "Daisy Miller." This volume reproduces the definitive New York edition texts.
About the Series: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Adrian Poole has written extensively on Henry James and has edited What Maisie Knew, The American, Washington Square, and The Aspern Papers and Other Stories for Oxford World's Classics. He is the editor of the Cambridge Companion to English Novelists (2009), The Oxford Book of Classical (2005).