The Wings of the Dove Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Wings of the Dove

Henry James complained that people don't pay close enough attention when reading his books. He may not have realized what he was asking. Not only does one have to read this book closely; one has to read between the lines, as well. "The Wings of the Dove" is made up of characters so subtle and so intelligent that even a careful reader will be challenged to keep up. The story follows a young man, Densher, and woman, Kate Croy, who want to be together, but in a brighter financial situation. Kate devises a plan to improve their prospects and asks Densher only to be patient. Her intelligence and moral flexibility allow her to adjust her original plan when the possibility of an even better outcome presents itself in the person of Milly Theale, "the Dove." What the process will do to Milly is of little importance to Densher and Kate at the outset. However, as the pair gets to know Milly better, Densher's conviction begins to crumble. Despite his best efforts to turn a blind eye to his own part in a terrible deception, he feels his character eroding and needs constant reassurance from Kate that it all will be worth it in the end.
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The review of this Book prepared by Cindy Dashnaw

Chapter Analysis of The Wings of the Dove

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   thoughtful Time/era of story    -   1900-1920's Internal struggle/realization?    -   Yes Struggle over    -   nature of existence (heavy philosophy) Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   wealthy Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White (American)


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   3 () United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Northeast Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK Misc setting    -   resort/hotel

Writing Style

Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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Henry James Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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