Maggie Verver, a young American heiress, and her widowed father Adam, a billionaire collector of objects d’art, lead a life of wealth and refinement in London. They are both getting married: Maggie to Prince Amerigo, an impoverished Italian aristocrat, and Adam to the beautiful but penniless Charlotte Stant, a friend of his daughter. But both father and daughter are unaware that their new conquests share a secret- one for which all concerned must pay the price. Henry James’s late, great work is a highly charged study of adultery, jealousy and possession that both continues and challenges his theme of confrontation between American innocence and European experience.
Part of a series of new Penguin Classics editions of Henry James’s works, this edition contains a chronology, suggestive further reading, a glossary, notes and an introduction by Ruth Bernard Yeazell discussing James’s original conception of the novel and later changes made to its structure and characters.