Wieland; or, The Transformation

Wieland; or, The Transformation
An American Tale

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3
(1 Review)
Wieland; or, The Transformation by Charles Brockden Brown

Published:

1798

Pages:

464

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1,291

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Wieland; or, The Transformation
An American Tale

By

3
(1 Review)
The following Work is delivered to the world as the first of a series of performances, which the favorable reception of this will induce the Writer to publish. His purpose is neither selfish nor temporary, but aims at the illustration of some important branches of the moral constitution of man. Whether this tale will be classed with the ordinary or frivolous sources of amusement, or be ranked with the few productions whose usefulness secures to them a lasting reputation, the reader must be permitted to decide.

Book Excerpt

as sources of amusement. They were now converted into the means of gain. At this period there were few works of taste in the Saxon dialect. My ancestor may be considered as the founder of the German Theatre. The modern poet of the same name is sprung from the same family, and, perhaps, surpasses but little, in the fruitfulness of his invention, or the soundness of his taste, the elder Wieland. His life was spent in the composition of sonatas and dramatic pieces. They were not unpopular, but merely afforded him a scanty subsistence. He died in the bloom of his life, and was quickly followed to the grave by his wife. Their only child was taken under the protection of the merchant. At an early age he was apprenticed to a London trader, and passed seven years of mercantile servitude.

My father was not fortunate in the character of him under whose care he was now placed. He was treated with rigor, and full employment was provided for every hour of his time. His duties were laborious and mechanical.

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A very dark story of manipulation and sabotage. Someone or something is destroying the seeming idyllic harmony of the Wieland family. Theodore Wieland, the patriarch of the Weiland family, begins hearing voices telling him to commit the unthinkable. Who or what is behind the voices and what is the ultimate motive behind them.
This book is part mystery and part Psychological thriller. Theodore's descent into madness is chilling and disturbing. In many ways it is a foreshadowing of Stephen King's The Shining.