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David Copperfield (Nonesuch Dickens) Hardcover – November 26, , Dickens own favorite among his works is his most autobiographical novel, . Oliver Twist, Bleak House, Christmas Books, Nicholas Nickleby, David Copperfield, . of the page -- rather than forcing you to flip to the back -- is a welcome bonus. David Copperfield is the eighth novel by Charles Dickens. David Copperfield, The Old Curiosity Shop and Bleak House are among his most famous the bottom of the page -- rather than forcing you to flip to the back -- is a welcome bonus.
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The Norton annotations in this regard are uniformly concise and helpful. Please try again later. Two sailors wash up in Wales with incredible stories of mistreatment by a merchant ship flying a Bolivian flag with a Greek captain and a Spanish crew. Review "No more handsome edition of Dickens has yet appeared, nor is it easy to conceive of any which might surpass this one. Esther has her own romance when Mr Woodcourt returns to England, having survived a shipwreck, and continues to seek her company despite her disfigurement.
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Thank you for your feedback. Read reviews that mention classic charles tale carol expectations school bleak english classics young edition kindle oliver twist novels pages language cities literature words. There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. More than most Dickens novels, this one needs annotations if you're really going to understand the target of the satire: Yes, you do get the basic idea without fully understanding the historical background, but the novel is much richer if you do.
The Norton annotations in this regard are uniformly concise and helpful. The many allusions both to high and low culture are also glossed, and while you may be well-versed enough in the Christian Bible to do without some of these, Dickens' reading otherwise was highly idiosyncratic -- to the point that even the most well-read consumer is probably going to need a hand from time to time e.
As to the popular culture, I defy anyone other than a time traveler or historian specializing in the period to identify references to popular songs, ballads, etc. That the annotations appear at the bottom of the page -- rather than forcing you to flip to the back -- is a welcome bonus. As for the other features of this edition, the critical apparatus comparing differences in various editions that appeared within Dickens' lifetime is unlikely to interest anyone other than specialists, but there are other, more helpful features for the general reader.
There is a very good introduction to the Chancery Court oddly missing from the Modern Library edition -- which otherwise uses the same base text and contains the same annotations if you need a hardback edition , some helpful primary documents about some of the topics that inform the novel, and like all Norton Critical Editions a small sampling of excerpts from critical essays usually several decades old which are sometimes interesting, but almost always superseded by more recent scholarship. The trade paperback binding is flexible and durable --allowing you to lay the open book on a flat surface without immediately cracking the spine.
You could even read it this way so long as you're not doing silly things like mashing the book completely flat. Though the pages might be fractionally thinner than some may prefer, it does help to keep the bulk down in such a lengthy novel saving shelf space, as well as making it easier to handle while reading.
The type is high enough contrast with the page so as not to cause undue eyestrain, and the font is not minuscule to save space. This edition does include the illustrations by Phiz Hablot Browne , which are essential as far as I am concerned. The classic story by Charles Dickens retold for children ready to tackle longer and more complex stories. Part of the Usborne Reading Programme developed with reading experts at the University of Roehampton. With internet links to find out more about the life and times of Charles Dickens.
Read the following reviews or write one of your own. It is believed to have been inspired by a number of real-life Chancery cases involving wills, including those of Charles Day and William Jennens ,  and of Charlotte Smith 's father-in-law Richard Smith.
Much criticism of Bleak House focuses on its unique narrative structure: The omniscient narrator speaks in the present tense and is a dispassionate observer. Esther Summerson tells her own story in the past tense like David in David Copperfield or Pip in Great Expectations , and her narrative voice is characterised by modesty, consciousness of her own limits, and willingness to disclose to us her own thoughts and feelings. These two narrative strands never quite intersect, though they do run in parallel.
Nabokov felt that letting Esther tell part of the story was Dickens's "main mistake" in planning the novel  Alex Zwerdling, a scholar from Berkeley, after observing that "critics have not been kind to Esther," nevertheless thought Dickens's use of Esther's narrative "one of the triumphs of his art". Esther's portion of the narrative is an interesting case study of the Victorian ideal of feminine modesty. She introduces herself thus: This claim is almost immediately belied by the astute moral judgement and satiric observation that characterise her pages. In the same introductory chapter, she writes: As if this narrative were the narrative of MY life!
But my little body will soon fall into the background now" chap. This does not turn out to be true. For most readers and scholars, the central concern of Bleak House is its indictment of the English Chancery court system. Chancery or equity courts were one half of the English civil justice system, existing side-by-side with law courts.
Chancery courts heard actions having to do with wills and estates, or with the uses of private property. By the mid-nineteenth century, English law reformers had long criticised the delays of Chancery litigation, and Dickens found the subject a tempting target.
He already had taken a shot at law-courts and that side of the legal profession in his novel The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club or The Pickwick Papers. Scholars — such as the English legal historian Sir William Searle Holdsworth , in his series of lectures Charles Dickens as a Legal Historian published by Yale University Press — have made a plausible case for treating Dickens's novels, and Bleak House in particular, as primary sources illuminating the history of English law. Dickens claimed in the preface to the book edition of Bleak House that he had "purposely dwelt upon the romantic side of familiar things".
And some remarkable things do happen: One character, Krook, smells of brimstone and eventually dies of spontaneous human combustion. This was highly controversial. The nineteenth century saw the increasing triumph of the scientific worldview.
Scientifically inclined writers, as well as doctors and scientists, rejected spontaneous human combustion as legend or superstition. When the instalment of Bleak House containing Krook's demise appeared, the literary critic George Henry Lewes accused Dickens of "giving currency to a vulgar error". In the preface of the book edition of Bleak House , Dickens wrote: George Gissing and G. Chesterton are among those literary critics and writers who consider Bleak House to be the best novel that Charles Dickens wrote. As Chesterton put it: Daniel Burt, in his book The Novel Horror and supernatural fiction author Stephen King named it among his top 10 favourite books.
The house named Bleak House in Broadstairs , is not the original. Dickens stayed with his family at this house then called Fort House , for at least one month every summer from until However, there is no evidence that it formed the basis of the fictional Bleak House, particularly as it is so far from the location of the fictional house. The house is on top of the cliff on Fort Road, and was renamed Bleak House after his death, in his honour. Dickens locates the fictional Bleak House in St Albans, Hertfordshire, where he wrote some of the book.
An 18th-century house in Folly Lane, St Albans, has been identified as a possible inspiration for the titular house in the story since the time of the book's publication and was known as Bleak House for many years. In the late nineteenth century, actress Fanny Janauschek acted in a stage version of Bleak House in which she played both Lady Dedlock and her maid Hortense.
The two characters never appear on stage at the same time. In the silent film era, Bleak House was filmed in and The latter version featured Sybil Thorndike as Lady Dedlock. The first serial, Bleak House , was broadcast in in eleven half-hour episodes. Charles Jefferys wrote the words for and Charles William Glover wrote the music for songs called Ada Clare  and Farewell to the Old House ,  which are inspired by the novel.
Anthony Phillips included a piece entitled "Bleak House" on his progressive rock release, Sides. The form of the lyrics roughly follows the narrative of Esther Summerson, and is written in her voice. Like most Dickens novels, Bleak House was published in 20 monthly instalments, each containing 32 pages of text and two illustrations by Phiz the last two being published together as a double issue.