April 15, 2011

The Others - Charles Dickens

Now, if you've never heard of Charles Dickens you should be very much ashamed of yourself. But I will assume that you have and maybe also read one or two of his books along the way. Or at least watched a movie adaptation of A Christmas Carol. But, frankly, while those movies are neat to watch - the one with Patrick Stewart being my favorite -, you should read the book itself too.

This English novelist of the Victorian area is still one of the most iconic and popular author's today, and he is so for a reason. With a florid and poetic writing style, and often a bit of fantasy mixed with realism in his stories, Dickens is probably best known for his depiction of the hardships of the working class. Characters such as Ebeneezer Scrooge, Oliver Twist and David Copperfield are among the most memorable in English literature. Interesting nit bit – most of his books, such as The Old Curiosity Shop or Great Expectations, were published as weekly installments in magazines before they made it into book form.
But not the stories alone left their mark in the reader's memory. The term "Scrooge" became a synonym for miser, and the exclamation "Bah! Humbug!" makes clear you're dismissive of the festive spirit. And while I would have thought that A Christmas Carol simply must be Dickens' best selling book, it is in fact A Tale Of Two Cities, which I admittedly never read.

Want to read some Dickens yourself now? With Project Gutenberg you can read all of his books for free. Though I must confess, with the classics I always felt it to be a bit of a sacrilege to read them in the eBook versions. But in the end, it is the content that counts.

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