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THE AWAKENING

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The novel opens with the Pontellier family -- Léonce, a New Orleans businessman of Louisiana Creole heritage; his wife Edna; and their two sons, Etienne and Raoul -- vacationing on Grand Isle at a resort on the Gulf of Mexico managed by Madame Lebrun and her two sons, Robert and Victor.

Edna spends most of her time with her close friend Adèle Ratignolle, who cheerily and boisterously reminds Edna of her duties as a wife and mother. At Grand Isle, Edna eventually forms a connection with Robert Lebrun, a charming, earnest young man who actively seeks Edna's attention and affections. When they fall in love, Robert senses the doomed nature of such a relationship and flees to Mexico under the guise of pursuing a nameless business venture. The narrative focus moves to Edna's shifting emotions as she reconciles her maternal duties with her desire for social freedom and to be with Robert.

When summer vacation ends, the Pontelliers return to New Orleans. Edna gradually reassesses her priorities and takes a more active role in her own happiness. She starts to isolate herself from New Orleans society and to withdraw from some of the duties traditionally associated with motherhood. Léonce eventually talks to a doctor about diagnosing his wife, fearing she is losing her mental faculties. The doctor advises Léonce to let her be and assures him that things will return to normal.

When Léonce prepares to travel to New York City on business, he sends the boys to his mother. Being left home alone for an extended period gives Edna physical and emotional room to breathe and reflect on various aspects of her life. While her husband is still away, she moves out of their home and into a small bungalow nearby and begins a dalliance with Alcée Arobin, a persistent suitor with a reputation for being free with his affections. Edna is shown as a sexual being for the first time in the novel, but the affair proves awkward and emotionally fraught.

Edna also reaches out to Mademoiselle Reisz, a gifted pianist whose playing is renowned but who maintains a generally hermetic existence. Her playing had moved Edna profoundly earlier in the novel, representing what Edna was starting to long for: independence. Mademoiselle Reisz focuses her life on music and herself instead of on society's expectations, acting as a foil to Adèle Ratignolle, who encourages Edna to conform. Reisz is in contact with Robert while he is in Mexico, receiving letters from him regularly. Edna begs Reisz to reveal their contents, which she does, proving to Edna that Robert is thinking about her.

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Price Summary

  • We started tracking this book on November 23, 2018.
  • This book was $7.00 when we started tracking it.
  • The price of this book has changed 88 times in the past 462 days.
  • The current price of this book is $3.70 last checked 2 hours ago.
  • This lowest price this book has been offered at in the past 90 days is $3.19.
  • This lowest price this book has been offered at in the past six months is $3.10.
  • This lowest price this book has been offered at in the past year is $2.83.
  • The lowest price to date was $2.51 last reached on December 5, 2018.
  • This book has been $2.51 one time since we started tracking it.
  • The highest price to date was $7.00 last reached on November 23, 2018.
  • This book has been $7.00 one time since we started tracking it.

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Additional Info

  • Publication Date: November 21, 2018
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • Lending: Disabled
  • Print Length: 269 Pages
  • File Size: 1,332 KB

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