One of the major themes in the works of William Dean Howells is the complex, often difficult, relationship inside married couples. In April Hopes a variation of this theme occurs as he examines the morality of courtship. Bennett argues that Howells shows “that happiness could not be insured by love alone, but that there must be equality in the backgrounds, the principals and the temperaments of the lovers” (171).
April Hopes begins at Harvard on Dan Mavering’s, the central male character, graduation day. Mutual friends of the major characters’ families introduce Alice Pasmer to Dan and Mrs. Pasmer to Elbridge Mavering, Dan’s father, and quickly excuse themselves. The two couples …
Loges, Max Lester. "April Hopes". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 June 2017
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=6538, accessed 27 June 2017.]