The Wings of the Dove
By Henry James
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Milly Theale, an American heiress, travels to Europe and becomes involved with Kate Croy and Merton Densher, two lovers who concoct a treacherous design of betrayal and destruction to lure Milly out of her inheritance and personal connections and, finally, health. To gain her trust, Kate and Merton patronize her which is easy since Milly is naive and artless. Milly, however, is aware of a great potential for life because she knows she is doomed to die. The world captivates her and before her death she wants to make finer passions possible to give her a feeling of having lived. Milly also has a keen and singular implication of liberty: liberty of endeavor, of choice, of obligation, of association. Being in the company of Kate and Merton is like an immeasurable force of gravity inundating a near object and by so doing making immersion inescapable. Milly is unconsciously aware of the conspiring strategies against her but still joins the contrivances in order to cling to whatever elements of life she cherishes. Please Note: This book is easy to read in true text, not scanned images that can sometimes be difficult to decipher. The Microsoft eBook has a contents page linked to the chapter headings for easy navigation. The Adobe eBook has bookmarks at chapter headings and is printable up to two full copies per year. Both versions are text searchable.