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Charles Dickens

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A Child's History of England by Charles Dickens

"If you look at a Map of the World, you will see, in the left-hand upper corner of the Eastern Hemisphere, two Islands lying in the sea. They are England and Scotland, and Ireland. England and Scotland form the greater part of these Islands. Ireland is the next in size. The little neighbouring islands, which are so small upon the Map as to be mere dots, are chiefly little...

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Dickens's beloved tale about the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge, who comes to know the meaning of kindness, charity, and goodwill through a haunting Christmas Eve encounter with four ghosts, is a heartwarming celebration of the spirit of Christmas.

American Notes for General Circulation by Charles Dickens

A travelogue by Dickens detailing his trip to North America from January to June, 1842. Whilst there he acted as a critical observer of North American society almost as if returning a status report on their progress. This can be compared to the style of his Pictures from Italy written four years later, where he wrote far more like a tourist. His American journey was also an...

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times... " With these famous words, Dickens plunges the reader into one of history's most explosive eras - the French Revolution. From the storming of the Bastille to the relentless drop of the guillotine, Dickens vividly captures the terror and upheaval of that tumultuous period. At the center is the novel's hero, Sydney...

Bleak House by Charles Dickens

Widely regarded as Dickens's masterpiece, Bleak House centers on the generations-long lawsuit Jarndyce and Jarndyce, through which "whole families have inherited legendary hatreds." Focusing on Esther Summerson, a ward of John Jarndyce, the novel traces Esther's romantic coming-of-age and, in classic Dickensian style, the gradual revelation of long-buried secrets, all set...

David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

'Please, Mr Murdstone! Don't beat me! I've tried to learn my lessons, really I have, sir!' sobs David. Although he is only eight years old, Mr Murdstone does beat him, and David is so frightened that he bites his cruel stepfather's hand. For that, he is kept locked in his room for five days and nights, and nobody is allowed to speak to him. As David grows up, he learns that...

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Pip doesn't expect much from life... His sister makes it clear that her orphaned little brother is nothing but a burden on her. But suddenly things begin to change. Pip's narrow existence is blown apart when he finds an escaped criminal, is summoned to visit a mysterious old woman and meets the icy beauty Estella. Most astoundingly of all, an anonymous person gives him...

Hard Times by Charles Dickens

Reason, Facts, and statistics... Dickens' scathing portrait of Victorian industrial society and its misapplied utilitarian philosophy, Hard Times features schoolmaster Thomas Gradgrind, one of his most richly dimensional, memorable characters. Filled with the details and wonders of small-town life, it is also a daring novel of ideas - and ultimately, a celebration of love...

Martin Chuzzlewit by Charles Dickens

Old Martin Chuzzlewit, tormented by the greed and selfishness of his family, effectively drives his grandson, young Martin, to undertake a voyage to America. It is a voyage which will have crucial consequences not only for young Martin, but also for his grandfather and his grandfather's servant, Mary Graham with whom young Martin is in love. The commercial swindle of the...

Nicholas Nickleby by Charles Dickens

The lengthy novel centres around the life and adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, a young man who must support his mother and sister after his father dies. His Uncle Ralph, who thinks Nicholas will never amount to anything, plays the role of an antagonist. Like nearly all of Dickens' works, the novel has a contemporary setting. Much of the action takes place in London, with...

Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

Thanks to its colorful cast of characters and gritty portrayal of street life in Victorian London, Dickens' Oliver Twist has captured readers' hearts for more than 150 years. Today's children will love it too. Oliver, a poor orphan, escapes the miserable workhouse where he was born only to fall into the clutches of a band of pickpockets led by the odious Fagin. Yet no...

The Chimes by Charles Dickens

The story of Trotty Veck, a poor ticket porter, whose outlook is changed from despair to hope by the spirits of the chimes on New Year's Eve.

The Cricket on the Hearth by Charles Dickens

John and Dot Peerybingle's marriage is threatened by a wide difference in their ages. Worried that Dot might be unfaithful, John consults the spirit of the Cricket on the Hearth whose chirping Dot has said brings luck. The cricket assures John that all will be well. In the end, misunderstandings are cleared up and the couple's happiness is restored.

The Old Curiosity Shop by Charles Dickens

The emotional tale of Little Nell and her doting grandfather was an immediate popular success in 1840-41. Played out against the backdrop of a cold and brutal London, the twosome abandon their home to escape debt and roam the countryside as beggars. Relentlessly pursued by a malicious moneylender and encountering ne'er-do-wells, con artists, and the persevering poor, they...

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