Table of Contents
Regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era, Charles Dickens’ fictional characters remain with us even today. A writer and social critic, Dickens has worked on weekly journals, novels, short stories and non-fiction articles. Alongside, he also campaigned for children’s rights, education and other social reforms. His novels create a spectacular balance between realism, comedy, prose style, unique characterisation and social criticism. Poetic and consequently humorous, his work also uses a lot of satire. Even today, Dickens is noted as the literary colossus whose writings are read across the globe. Most of his books have been adapted for television and films.
Charles Dickens Books: 2019 Price and Ratings
Charles Dickens Books
|Our Mutual Friend||Rs.150||
|A Tale Of Two Cities||Rs.188||
Dombey And Son
|A Christmas Carol||Rs.69||
The Pickwick Papers
1. Our Mutual Friend
Dickens’ last complete novel, Our Mutual Friend is a glorified satiric masterpiece. The book spans across various levels of the Victorian society while remaining centred around the inheritance of Old Harmon’s profitable dust heaps. As the young John Harmon is presumed dead when a body is pulled out of the River Thames, the fortune falls in the lap of a dustman, Mr Boffin. This complex yet satisfying book symbolises the vision of death and the corrupting power of money.
Year Of Publication: 1865
Number Of Copies Sold: the First issue sold 35,000 copies
2. Great Expectations
Narrated from a first person’s perspective, Great Expectations accounts the personal growth and development of an orphan nicknamed Pip. Pip is apprenticed to the dirty work of the forge but dreams of becoming a gentleman. Sudden and enigmatic circumstances bring hope towards Pip and his ‘great expectations’. This gripping tale exhibits social ambition, love, crime and the disappointment in setting expectations.
Year Of Publication: 1860
Number Of Copies Sold: 100,000 copies each week for all year round
3. A Tale Of Two Cities
Describing the split and crime between Paris and London, A Tale of Two Cities is a historical novel based on the French Revolution. When the ageing Doctor Manette is released from the Bastille prison after eighteen years, he finally reunites with his daughter in England. There the lives of two men, Charles Darnay and Sydney Carton become enmeshed through their love for Manette. Charles is an exiled French aristocrat and Sydney, a disrespectful but brilliant English lawyer. They both journey to the bloodstained streets of Paris in the reign of terror. Epic drama clubbed with personal tragedy; this novel is bound to catch your attention.
Year Of Publication: 1860
Number Of Copies Sold: 200 million copies
4. Little Dorrit
The classic tale of Little Dorrit begins when Arthur Clennam returns from England after many years abroad. He starts to take a keen interest in Amy Dorrit and the affairs of her father, a man of shabby grandeur who was long imprisoned for debt in Marshalsea. As the story moves further, Arthur discovers the dark shadow of the prison that stretches far beyond its walls. The novel maturely masters the evocation of the state and psychology of imprisonment.
Year Of Publication: 1857
5. David Copperfield
Regarded as Dickens’ favourite child, David Copperfield is the tale of a young man’s journey from an unhappy and impoverished childhood to the discovery of his vocation as a successful novelist. The book unravels his adventures and the numerous friends and enemies he meets along his way. Exuberant and enduring, it is the perfect example of tragedy and comedy.
Year Of Publication: 1850
6. Dombey And Son
Dombey and Son novel reflects upon the story of a powerful man and his professional and personal downfall triggered by the frustration of not having a son to follow him. The pages unfold the devastating effects of emotional deprivation on a dysfunctional family and on the society as a whole. The story features themes of arranged marriages, child cruelty, deceit and interclass relationships.
Year Of Publication: 1848
Number Of Copies Sold: 40,000 copies a month from the first publishing
7. A Christmas Carol
A Christmas Carol accounts the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, a bitter and cold-hearted miser lacking the Christmas spirit. As Scrooge sits down in his cold and dark apartment, he is visited by the ghost of his former business partner who warns him about being haunted by three other ghosts, the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come, who will take him on their respective journeys. Filled with compassion and humour, this novel is regarded as the best Yuletide tales of all time.
Year Of Publication: 1843
Number Of Copies Sold: Over 2 million copies
8. Bleak House
Bleak House is based on the obscure case of Jarndyce and Jarndyce that grinds away in the Court of Chancery for decades. Its competing plot describes the lives of many in London society and highlights different aspects of rich and poor. Often referred to as a great Victorian novel, the book portrays an assault on the legal system and satire on foolish philanthropy.
Year Of Publication: 1843
Number Of Copies Sold: 250,000 copies in America
9. Oliver Twist
The story of Oliver Twist centres around an orphan who was born in a workhouse. The book records his growing years in poverty, his subsequent apprenticeship with an undertaker, his escape to London and finally, his encounters with the Artful Dodger. Twists’ adventures are filled with danger and pervasive evil. The book explores themes of a cruel society and its sense of threat and mystery.
Year Of Publication: 1839
10. The Pickwick Papers
A comic masterpiece, The Pickwick Papers was Dickens’ first novel that begins with a meeting of the Pickwick Club. The members gathered together to honour their founder, Samuel Pickwick who intends to travel the country to compile stories and do some research. His three friends, Tupman, Snodgrass and Winkle, accompany him. The book unfolds their adventures in ebullient humour and literary inventions.
Year Of Publication: 1837
Number Of Copies Sold: 40,000 copies in the last instalment