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This novel is very intriguing and teaches lessons of morality religion and of life and death intended for those with imagination and insight The authors style contributes deeply to the intrigue and true meaning to this novel The authors use of imagery makes tensions in the story vivid and emphatic In this story there is a re-occurring tension between religion and desire The tension between religion and desire is most clearly demonstrated between the characters of Yvette and the rector Yvette was brought up in a world of religious conventions and beliefs an environment of forgiveness love and morality This world is later realized to truly be a world of repression towards all feelings of passion and desire not the environment of forgiveness love and morality Yvette and the readers are lead to believe This starts the conflict between religion and desire and confuses Yvette greatly because her religious upbringing denies and contradicts all her natural instincts of love passion and sexuality The rector and Yvette do not share the same understanding of love They are both very different in their thoughts and expressions of what love is The narrator in the story tells us what the rector thinks of Cynthia his lost wife He describes her as the pure white snow-flower p6 and expresses that her husband thought of her on inaccessible heightsthat she was throned in lone splendor aloft their lives never to be touched p7 This would have the reader believe that Cynthia is considered in the rectors eyes to be like god not bodily in his life At another point in the novel the narrator informs the reader that the rector believes Cynthia to be sacred and that she was enshrined in his heart as if she were a religious idol never simply expressing any love or desire for his lost wife Its like the rector has moral religious love for his lost wife and not passion or desire like
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