Archive for the ‘Charles Dickens’ Category

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July 13, 2016

My Brexit

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(This is the final entry in a series that begins with A Night in Steerage.) The third week of June was a strange time to be in London.  Brexit was approaching its vote.  A beloved MP, Jo Cox, a strong advocate of immigration, had been assassinated outside her constituency office in Yorkshire.  The country was  Read the Rest…

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July 9, 2016

A Day of Pilgrimages

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(This is the twelfth in a series that begins with A Night in Steerage.) I’ve wanted to see Canterbury Cathedral for as long as I can remember.  Never more so than after I read The Canterbury Tales a few summers’ ago.  It was on the itinerary for Wednesday but I almost didn’t go.   There were  Read the Rest…

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July 7, 2016

Finding London

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(This the eleventh in a series that begins with A Night in Steerage.) London is my favorite city in the whole world but I ached on the way to the train station.  I had loved not feeling (completely) like a tourist.  Wendy, Sue and I had gotten on well together and I felt a lot  Read the Rest…

BooksCharles DickensLiterature

November 30, 2014

Dombey and Son

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I am almost finished with my Dickens Project.  Fourteen novels down and one more to go. I stalled a little at the prospect of Dombey and Son because no one seems to like it or to think it’s much good.  Surprise!  It was a sleeper.  I loved it.  It’s a glorious gush of a soap  Read the Rest…

BooksCharles Dickens

October 3, 2014

Bleak House

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It’s difficult to choose a “favorite” Dickens novel. What I can say is that I’ve read Bleak House three times. It begins with the fog surrounding the Chancery law courts: “Fog everywhere. Fog up the river, where it flows among green aits and meadows; fog down the river, where it rolls defiled among tiers of  Read the Rest…

BooksCharles DickensLiterature

September 6, 2014

The Pickwick Papers

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I had an odd relation to this novel. In the beginning I liked it more than I did when I’ve tried to read it before. Then I thought it stupid. Then the character Sam Weller appeared and I kept reading just to see what he would say next. Then the narrative got tiresome. I took  Read the Rest…

BooksCharles DickensEnglandLiterature

August 13, 2014

A Tale of Two Cities

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I almost wet myself the first time I read the denouement of Madame Defarge in A Tale of Two Cities and I still love the pacing and tension between the comic and the terrifying in that scene. This book is an old favorite, and one nurtured by a beloved high school English teacher. I can  Read the Rest…

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August 3, 2014

Little Dorrit

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My Little Dorrit story begins months before I ever launched myself on my current Summer of Dickens project. I was browsing in the library to see if there was a book on tape not by an author whose paperbacks could insulate a McMansion. I saw Little Dorrit. “Oh. Little Dorrit. I’ll try that.” There were  Read the Rest…

BooksCharles DickensLiterature

July 18, 2014

Nicholas Nickleby

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Readers are advised that this post makes the detail of the plot explicit. But you probably weren’t planning on reading the book anyway. My only recollection from reading Nicholas Nickleby in high school is that I liked it. Forty-five years later I understand why I liked it but I don’t see how I got through  Read the Rest…

BooksCharles DickensLiterature

July 5, 2014

Martin Chuzzlewit

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Charles Dickens is often criticized for creating characters that don’t grow and mature. There are days I might add that in that case, art is merely reflecting life. In any case, in Martin Chuzzlewit the maturation of the eponymous Martin as a plot line is nearly obliterated by the presence of a grandiose fellow who  Read the Rest…