In case you missed all the hype – this week we celebrated the Charles Dickens Bicentennial, which coincidentally makes 2012 the Year of Dickens…
As you probably know, Charles Dickens was an English novelist and to this very day he is considered to be one of the greatest, if not THE greatest novelist of the Victorian Era. What makes him so special is for example the fact that he was one of the very few writers of his time to enjoy some remarkable popularity and fame during his lifetime, instead of only posthumously. His writings are indeed so extraordinarily popular that they have never been out of print and the colorful and memorable protagonist in his writings live on and on, to be discovered and enjoyed by yet another new generation of delighted readers !
Well, what I am trying to say here is that, as a descendant of a long, very long indeed line of self-professed book worms, I grew up reading and loving almost every single one of Dickens’ literature classics and would like to introduce you to four of my Dickens must-reads for children and adults alike !
The Life and Adventures of Oliver Twist: This Dickens Novel with its unforgettable characters and realistic portrayal of street life in Victorian London, tells the story of Oliver Twist, a poor orphan who escapes the workhouse where he was born only to fall into the clutches of a band of pickpockets led by the odious Fagin. Throughout his adventures Oliver remains pure at heart and is rewarded for it in the end !
The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby: This is the story of Nicholas Nickleby, who really is a gentleman’s son but has fallen upon hard times and is looking for a way to improve his own and his family’s life. Follow Nicholas’ adventures, meet a full cast of sometimes kind, sometimes evil but always unique characters and witness the hero’s well-deserved happy end…
David Copperfield: The hero of this novel is David Copperfield, who orphaned as a boy, grows up to discover love and happiness, heartbreak and sorrow amid a cast of eccentrics, innocents, and villains. This is considered to be Dickens’ most auto-biographical novel, drawing closely from his memories of his own childhood and life – so don’t miss out own getting to know the author through his own words !
Great Expectations: This magical novel is really a classic coming-of-age story ! Meet the naive but ambitious Pip, the eccentric and tragic Miss Havisham, the beautiful but cold-hearted Estella and watch them grow and change throughout the novel… This is a perfect story for young adults and I guarantee they will fall in love with it and the truly unforgettable protagonists !
Be brave – read one of these classics with your kids and watch them discover a new world – it doesn’t even cost anything since the copyright on all of Charles Dickens’ work has long expired and all the novels and stories are available for free !