The Painted Door by Sinclair Ross follows a woman named Ann as she waits for her husband John to return from a trip to his father’s house during a storm. Ann is insistent that he not leave her alone, but John is worried about his father and promises to come back as soon as possible. Ann secretly feels dissatisfied with her life married to a farmer and resents John even though he loves her wholeheartedly. Ann preoccupies herself by painting a door and after their neighbour Steven arrives, she realizes that she has feelings for him and ends up cheating on John. At the end of the story, John is found frozen to death with paint on his hand and Ann realizes that she really loved John.
Ann and John are both realistic and relatable characters. The line “this spring- next spring- all the springs and summers still to come” (308) is where Ann expresses how every year will be the same for her for the rest of her life. John is described as having “in his devotion a baffling, insurmountable humility that made him feel the need of sacrifice” (307) which describes John’s love for Ann and his belief that he does not deserve someone like her. Through an interesting storyline and dramatic ending, the story is able to leave a lasting impact on the reader.
Overall, I would recommend the Painted Door because the story is well-written, interesting, and leaves a lasting impact on the reader.
Works Cited: Sinclair Ross. “The Painted Door.” Short Fiction An Anthology: Second Edition. Ed. Levene, Mark, and Rosemary Sullivan. Oxford University Press, 2003. Print.