Reader recommendation: Hawthorne, A Life

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Despite years of studying New England’s 19th-century authors, I never knew that Nathaniel Hawthorne’s son Julian went to jail. This is one of countless colorful details artfully woven into the fabric of Hawthorne: A Life, by Brenda Wineapple. This book will make you wish you lived in Concord, Mass., with Ralph Waldo Emerson, Bronson Alcott, Henry David Thoreau, and Hawthorne.

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