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Claire

Who loves Dickens?

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I thought that was The Moonstone?

Yes, if we're talking about a true detective novel. BH was earlier but Bucket's investigations are not the core of the book. It was certainly a trailblazer for the evolution of that genre, though, and Bucket was one of the earliest true detectives in fiction.

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Hi Claire, Ive read a few of Dickens books and have realy enjoyed them. The last one being A Christmas Carol due mainly to having to retake my english lit GCSE.

I think what i love most about this books is how it works on a number of levels. For example,on one level its simply a ghost story,yet on another its one man finding ultimate redemption, initally against his own will.

Cheers Darryl

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I love Dickens his sense of place and description are second to none you are transported directly into the story and have a vivid picture of the situation in the plot, I can understand why he is considered hard going and people I have discussed him with say he is long winded but I think it just adds to his charm you are left with such a definate picture of the story. Bleak House is my favourite in fact it is my favourite book full stop the best book ever written in my opinion, it has everything, love, murder, intrigue, suspense and humour. It is also very moving in places, this book blew me away the first time I read it, I read it after the excellent adaptation the BBC did a couple of years ago and I think that helped me get to grips and understand the story more as it is very complicated reading.

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Given the choice between A Tale of Two Cities and The Old Curiosity Shop on audiobook, which should I choose?

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Yup, I'd agree with Binker. TOCS is interesting and entertaining, but an earlier novel and not nearly as accomplished as TOTC.

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Jen - you could be greedy and go for both!! :D
I probably will in the long run, but I subscribe to Audible and get one "free" download a month so something has to be chosen (and listened to) first.

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Does anyone feel in "Dickens" mood at this particular time of year? I rarely ever read any of his work in Spring or Summer, but when the darker days come in ....! :)

 

I think it's largely due to childhood programming. As a family, we always watched the televised serials of classic novelists which inevitably came on during the run-up to Christmas. Fantastic they were, too. The Beeb has never been outdone in producing like quality dramas, have they?

So now - my reading follows the same pattern.

 

Of course "A Christmas Carol" is obvious, and also the other Christmas stories. Other favourites are "Oliver Twist" (or "The Pickwick Papers" which for some reason is the most difficult "Dickens" to get - ?!) or "The Old Curiousity Shop" despite it's tragic loss of Little Nell.

 

Anyone else out there a "Winter" Dickens fan?

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Have just come to this thread off the back of the Pickwick Papers thread - thanks to David for the link!

 

Lots of good stuff here. I've read Great Expectations before, studying with the OU a good few years back. More recently, Nicholas Nickleby, and a long long long time, think schooldays, Hard Times. HT I think was the reason I *didn't* read any more Dickens for a long time...

 

Interesting viewpoints about Dickens' use of language - there seems to be a fairly even split between those who revel in it, and those who find it a bit of a barrier. Halfway through PP, I can almost just pick up the book and let myself slot into "Dickenspeak" - being very analytical, it's almost as though I recognise that this is a very different style to what we'd recognise as realism, but have made a deal with myself to not let it interfere.

 

Lastly, Dickens World: who would have guessed it would still be going years later? The 'attraction' seems to have been re-jigged a bit (and is certainly cheaper!) but I still can't say I'm exactly champing at the bit to see it. Unlike Dickens' birthplace which, to my shame, I still haven't visited, despite living only a few miles away as the crow flies. That one I am going to try to do soon.

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An interesting comparison would then be to read Thackeray's Vanity Fair, which is another biting Victorian anatomisation of society. Thackeray couldn't stand Dickens, so see which you think is the better and set the other spinning in his literary grave.

 

That's good to know as my husband loves Vanity Fair and I couldn't stand it.  I often think he'd really dislike Dickens so I never suggest he read one.  I am only a coupld of Dickens in (it doesn't help that I read them in Winter only).  Based on comments above I think I'll try David Copperfield next.

 

I read them in installments, they just seem to fit really nicely into 50 page blocks. 

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I love Dickens !  Problem is, I've only read a few of his books. I have all the others but have yet to read them .

 

I loved Great Expectations best, then David Copperfield . Oliver was ok ,but not as good . Also loved Pickwick --such funny descriptions of the people . dickens had such an imagination and sense of humor .

 

Not to judge a book by its' cover, but that always surprises me when an author who looks like him is so funny ! He looks like he would have been very serious all the time .

 

I have a book on his life,so I need to read it to find out more about him .

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Claire Tomalin's book is the most recent and most accessible to the general reader. A more thorough - and at times eccentric biography is Ackroyd's Dickens.

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Another Dickens fan here, although I've not read everything yet.  Loved Great Expectations; mega favourite is A Christmas Carol.  Could not get through Nicholas Nickleby as I got to page 172 and nothing much had happened.  The best piece of writing I've ever read is in Oliver Twist - the passage where Oliver and his now-restored grandfather go to see Fagin in jail.  The madness of Fagin where he believes Oliver has come to save him from execution is EPIC.  Saw an English docu-movie eighteen months ago on Dickens; apparently, when he was creating a new character, he'd go to the mirror then speak and make the facial expressions of the character about to come into being. So that's why so many of his characters are 'visible'.

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I really enjoy his book oliver twist.

I am trying to find time to read classic books written by authors in the past.

But with the lack of time, I read mainly fantasy books.

Still, I wish to allocate time to read a classic book for every ten fantasy books I read.

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