A Story of San Francisco
An early example of American realism, McTeague was considered truly shocking when first published at the turn of the century. This searing portrait of the downfall of a slow-witted dentist and his avaricious wife embodies Frank Norris's powerful insights into conflicting forces of heredity and social conditioning. It is a novel of compelling narrative force, resounding with a sense of life as epic. As Kevin Starr points out in his introduction, McTeague continues to be regarded as a central statement of evolutionary awareness in late nineteenth-century America and as representative of the best work of a school of writers that included Stephen Crane and Theodore Dreiser.