Can you sum up the book in two paragraphs or less?
Well, it is certainly a challenge!
The Scarlet Letter is a novel that deals with a woman who was convicted of adultery and must learn to live with the town's contempt and her own struggles with the nature of the sin. It is further complicated by the fact that she has given birth to a child, she does not reveal the father's name, and her missing husband has returned and seeks revenge. Her lover, Dimmesdale is awash with his own struggle with guilt. He does not come forward, yet despises himself for his cowardice.
As the years pass, Hester has earned the grudging respect of the town, and has manged to keep Pearl, as well. Chillingworth continues his quest to destroy Hester's lover, while Dimmesdale is doing a good job of destroying himself. Dimmesdale is disintegrating before the community's eyes and Chillingworth is becoming as physically evil as he is mentally. In the end, Hester and Dimmesdale make their peace with their sin, and reveal it to the community before Dimmesdale dies. Chillingworth dies afterwards , as well.