The text of this Norton Critical Edition is comprised of twenty-one of Hawthorne's most noteworthy tales and sketches, reprinted from the best collections available. Each tale is fully annotated.
The Author on His Work contains the prefaces Hawthorne wrote for the three collections of tales published during his lifetime as well as relevant selections from his American Notebooks and selected letters, both of which are reprinted from The Centenary Edition of the Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne
Criticism offers key contemporary assessments by Park Benjamin, Herman Melville, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edgar Allen Poe, Henry F. Chorley, James Russell Lowell, and Henry James.
The collection of recent criticism displays a considerable range of approaches, including essays by Q. D. Leavis, John P. McWilliams, Jr., Frederick C. Crews, Michael J. Colacurcio, Jorge Luis Borges, Sharon Cameron, Robert B. Heilman, Nina Baym, Leo Marx, and John W. Wright.
A Chronology of Hawthorne's life and a Selected Bibliography are included.