Every summer I read a classic; this is my choice for this year. Yes, Henry James is difficult, yes, he can be wordy and complicated, but this novel was well worth the time and effort I put into it. It is the story of Isabel Archer, a young American living in Europe who suddenly comes into a large inheritance. Isabel is an intelligent, thoughtful, kind person who has three men who wish to marry her. How she decides and where it takes her is the main action of the novel, but what Isabel thinks and feels is really the soul of The Portrait of a Lady. There’s a reason this book has stood the test of time-it’s exquisite.