‘It was the best of times; it was the worst of times’, automatically invokes the powerful imagery of the French Revolution and brings to mind the name of the brilliant author Charles Dickens. Dickens was an unparalleled author, a scholarly genius and a revolutionary thinker of his time. His literary work continues to astonish and drive the world of fiction. Born amidst a world torn by war, poverty, and conflict, Dickens faced tremendous hardships; his humble beginnings drove him to become one of the best writers in the world. In this blog, you can find some of the best Books by Charles Dickens to dive right into the mystical Dickensian world of tragedy, humour and politics.
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Happiness is a gift, and the trick is not to expect it but to delight in it when it comes.
Widely acknowledged as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era; Charles Dickens much like his characters was born in extremely dire circumstances in the year 1812. The destitute position of his family forced him to leave his education and work at the mere age of 12. Despite several obstacles, Dickens emerged as the greatest author of his time by exploring unconventional themes like child labour, exploitation, effects of industrialisation and more. His career in the world of fiction began with the publication of The Pickwick Papers in 1836. In his lifetime, Charles Dicken wrote a total of 15 books and several short stories like A Christmas Carol. All of his books are critically acclaimed and popularly received by the masses.
We need never be ashamed of our tears.
Best Works Of Charles Dickens
If you are someone who wants to explore the classical genre of English literature then here is a list of some of the best books by Charles Dickens.
A Christmas Carol
A Christmas Carol is by far the greatest novella centred around the theme of Christmas. It reinforces the spirit of generosity, forgiveness and goodwill of charity. The novella follows the story of the grumpy, old Ebenezer Scrooge who loathes the very idea of Christmas till he is visited by the spirit of the former business partner, Jacob Marley. The book was first published in the year 1843. A Christmas Carol has been adapted several times by filmmakers and continues to be the most heartwarming Christmas themed stories.
“Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance and benevolence were all my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!”
Considered one of the best works of Charles Dickens; the story of Bleak House follows the infamous Jarndyce Family. The plot follows several characters, their storylines and all the stories tend to converge back to the legendary Jarndyce judicial case. Bleak House is one of the finest books by Charles Dickens, it weaves an intricate plot of mystery, romance, humour, and political intrigue! The story is narrated in parts by Esther Summerson. The female protagonist of the book and from the point of view of a third person.
“I only ask to be free. The butterflies are free. Mankind will surely not deny to Harold Skimpole what it concedes to the butterflies.”
Oliver Twist is one of the most moving, poetic and heart wrenching novels of Charles Dickens. A political satire which follows the story of a young orphan called Oliver who is sold into child labour, only to escape and tangle himself into the bleak world of young pickpocketers headed by the criminal Fagin; the book is a powerful critique of western society, industrialisation, domestic violence and child labour. The book has been adapted multiple times into films, television shows and musicals.
“Strip the Bishop of his apron, or the beadle of his hat and lace; what are they? Men. Mere men.”
Originally published in 1855 follows the story of little Amy Dorrit who grew up in the Marshalsea Prison in London following her father’s imprisonment and the story of Mr Arthur Clennam. Much like Bleak House, Little Dorrit is a complex book following multiple characters and numerous subplots. The book is a melodramatic and notorious critique of the British political and judicial system; it deals with characters’ struggles with physical, emotional and mental entrapment.
“One always begins to forgive a place as soon as its left behind.”
It is one of the best, most powerful literary works in the classical genre of English Literature, all thanks to Charles Dickens. Great Expectations explores the life and adventures of Phillip Phirren who aspires to become a gentleman to win the love of his life, Estella. Commonly known as Pip is an orphan raised by his apathetic sister and yearns for a better life. The book is a powerful critic of class divisions, social standing and the arbitrary rules that governed the Victorian society.
“In a word, I was too cowardly to do what I knew to be right, as I had been too cowardly to avoid doing what I knew to be wrong.”
Dombey And Son
Though one of the less popular books of Charles Dickens; Dombey and Son is a beautiful story which explores many themes and emotions like ambition, pride, grief, gender, arrogance and family in Victorian London. It follows the story of a ruthless, ambitious father who yearns for his son to follow in his shoes while ignoring the love and devotion of his firstborn girl.
“…for not an orphan in the wide world can be so deserted as the child who is an outcast from a living parent’s love.”
Explore: Best Books By Lewis Carroll
Charles Dickens’ novels are a gateway to understanding the English literary world and if classical literature is something that fascinates and intrigues you then pursuing a degree in English Literature will be the best choice. If you are confused regarding how to go about the admission process or which college/ university to choose, get in touch with our experts at Leverage Edu. Book your free session today!