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Great Expectations
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In the little world in which children have their existence, whosever brings them up, there is nothing so finely perceived and so finely felt, as injustice Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

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Charles Dickens' stunning novel, which includes some of his most famous and memoral characters: Estella, Miss Havisham and the inimitable Pip

About the Author

Charles Dickens was born on 7 February 1812 in Landport in Portsmouth. When he was twelve years old he was sent to work in a shoe polish factory because his father had been imprisoned for debt. The Pickwick Papers, his first commercial success, was published in 1836, the same year that he married Catherine Hogarth. The serialisation of Oliver Twist began in 1837 while The Pickwick Papers was still running. Dickens became a celebrity in America as well as Britain. He set up and edited the journals Household Words (1850-9) and All the Year Round (1859-70). Charles Dickens died on 9 June 1870 leaving his last novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, unfinished. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

Reviews

Gr 8 Up-Great Expectations is the better told of these two classics, but breaking down a 500-page work of literary fiction into 48 pages of graphic text is a much simpler task than retelling the nearly 1000 pages of David Copperfield in the same amount of space, and Morley relies heavily on captions, rather than dialogue, to summarize Copperfield's complicated life story. She does, however, do an able job of summarizing the major plot points, and this could make a big difference for struggling readers. In both books, Gelev's artwork fits the time period, with detailed costumes, houses, and other background scenery. The neutral tones suit Dickens's dank world, and Miss Havisham's ramshackle home and crumbling wedding feast are drawn as readers might picture them. It is doubtful, though, that they would return to these books as particular favorites. They are more useful as classroom resources for readers struggling with Dickens's prose than for a general graphic-novel readership.-Sarah Knutson, American Canyon Middle School, CA (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

"He's a marvellous writer... He's very, very good" -- William Trevor
"A story of the traumas of sex and class. My favourite moment is the one where Magwitch makes his stumbling way up the shadowy staircase towards an unnerved but unsuspecting Pip: the halting but inexorable rise of the repressed 'from the darkness beneath'" -- Sarah Waters
"This was the author's last great work, the defects in it are as nearly imperceptible as spots on the sun or shadows on a sunlit sea" -- Algernon Charles Swinburne
"I would always prefer to go get another Dickens off the shelf than pick up a new book by someone I've not read yet... I love the tradition of Dickens, where even the most minor walk-on characters are twitching and particular and alive" -- Donna Tartt
"There is no one Dickens novel I could pick over all the others. Dickens is huge-like the sky. Pick any page of Dickens and it's immediately recognizable as him, yet he might be doing social satire, or farce, or horror, or a psychological study of a murderer-or any combination of these" -- Susannah Clarke

This beloved classic from Dickens follows the life and adventures of a six-year-old orphan named Pip as he makes his way and comes of age in 19th-century England. Simon Prebble turns in a solid performance in this audio edition, offering up a lush and resolutely dramatic reading and creating a panoply of unique voices and accents for the book's many characters. But while Prebble's performance is lavish, it fails to distinguish itself from the scores of previous audio productions of Dickens's novels. Still, his reading remains a pleasure and a well-orchestrated introduction to the world of Dickens-one that could serve as a wonderful opportunity for both fans and those new to the author's work. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

With a major new film adaptation of Great Expectations coming soon to the big screen, now is a good moment for an updated audio edition of this classic story of an orphan boy's rise from poverty to gentility, thanks to the help of an unknown patron. One of Dickens's finest works, it is, all at once, the heartrending tale of unrequited love, a deep mystery with a shocking resolution, and an often exciting action story. VERDICT Simon Prebble's powerful narration brings Dickens's colorful dialog alive and will make the book's 18-plus hours seem so many minutes. During this bicentennial year of Dickens's birth, this audiobook should be a slam-dunk acquisition for most libraries. [See "Charles Dickens: Our Mutual Friend," LJ 2/15/12, for more Dickens titles in audio.]-R. Kent Rasmussen, Thousand Oaks, CA (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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