Hawthorne manages to paint the characters in such a light that the reader can see into their very souls, and I can't remember ever having such character insight before.
Hawthorne was also quite a visionary in terms of recognising the inequalities women faced in society at the time. The main character Hester Prynne was a sinner and therefore couldn't bring herself to be the Prophetess to bring about the change.
I enjoyed the language, with treats along the way such as: "His gourmandism was a highly agreeable trait". Ultimately I enjoyed this American Classic and would recommend it to anyone not afraid of tackling a level of rich and complex writing.
My rating = ****