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Great Expectations Paperback – Jun 2016
|Paperback, Jun 2016||
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About the Author
Charles Dickens was one of the most popular English writers of all time. He created some of the world’s most well-known fictional characters and is generally regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian period.
Born in Portsmouth, England, on 7 February, 1812, Dickens was the second of eight children. He was forced to leave school after his father’s imprisonment, to work at a boot-blacking factory. His early childhood experiences were much like those depicted in his novel—David Copperfield. He felt abandoned and betrayed by the adults who were supposed to take care of him. These sentiments later became a recurring theme in his writings.
In 1865, Dickens was involved in a train accident and never fully recovered. on June 9, 1870, Dickens suffered a stroke and, at the age of 58, died at Gad’s Hill Place, his country home in Kent, England, leaving his final novel, the Mystery of Edwin Drood, unfinished.
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Great Expectations has both, and I found myself deeply engaged in the development of the immature character of the narrator, amazed at the techniques Dickens used to show the treachery and snobbery of the person who is in charge of telling the story - not an easy task, but wonderfully mastered. How is Pip going to show his faithlessness towards Joe if he is telling the story from a perspective where he is unaware of it? Dickens does it not so much through flashback moments (as in David Copperfield), but rather by describing the setting in a way that gives the reader more knowledge than the narrator. Very interesting.
And yes, I enjoyed the drama of the plot as well. There is no one like Dickens to make you shiver in the face of convicts, or shake inside Newgate prison!
Hard times ahead, picking another Dickens to read or re-read!
This was my second book by the author. After reading David Copperfield, I immediately embarked on this book. They are different yet similar as both deal with orphans.
An orphan lives with his curt sister and brother in law. He thinks his destiny is to be a humble blacksmith just like his best friend, his brother in law.
One day he comes into some fortune from an anonymous source. He is taken away from his abject life and given all the money in the world for his expenses. He also lives in London. Everything to make him happy is given to him.
This book has a substantial amount of suspense as one is often kept in dark. Our protagonist, Pip, is conditioned and influenced by the decisions of others for him. He does have great expectations but do they go a long way in making him happy altogether?
It is a long journey in Pip’s life of learning and fairing with different kinds of relatives, old friends and wishes to be loved.
It ends surprised me because it is not what I was expecting. I told myself I liked the end.
However, the whole book is a must-read but from the benchmark the author has set, I did feel a substantial lot of the writing was just filling up the pages of the book.
Three Stars in conclusion. This is a little more than half the length of David Copperfield.
Charles Dickens is an outstanding writer.