Monday, October 22, 2007

Great Expectationsby Charles Dickens

Rating: 9/10

Published: 1860-1861
Number of pages: 556
ISBN: 0141023538

Started: 20 September 2007
Finished: 10 October 2007

Summary (taken from blurb):

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 money to begin a new life in London.

Are these events as random as they seem? Or does Pip's fate hang on a series of coincidences he could never have expected?

A brilliant read and another tear-jerker! This is the second work of Dickens that I have read since beginning with A Tale of Two Cities last year. I found the style of writing much easier to get into this time, and I loved it from the start. The characters and scenery are beautifully painted and very haunting (Miss Havisham and the marshes come to mind). I love Dickens' descriptive writing and the humour he imbues in his writing.

I was expecting to love the character of Pip, but I mostly ended up disappointed by him again and again, until near the very end. Of course, this is no reflection on Dickens; he wrote an unlikable character extremely well. And I thought Pip's recollections made the transition between childhood and adulthood quite smoothly. Very highly recommended.

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