Thursday, June 2, 2016

Review: Oliver Twist

Oliver Twist Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Cover: Fitting
Rating Up 4 dismal stars
Overall: An interesting read
Characters: Well written
Plot: Follow young Oliver into the dark, back-alleys of London
Page Turner: Yes, for some
Series Cont.? N/a
Recommend Yes
Favorite Character: the Artful Dodger

'Let him feel that he is one of us; once fill his mind with the idea that he has been a thief, and he's ours, - ours for his life!'

The story of the orphan Oliver, who runs away from the workhouse only to be taken in by a den of thieves, shocked readers when it was first published. Dickens's tale of childhood innocence beset by evil depicts the dark criminal underworld of a London peopled by vivid and memorable characters — the arch-villain Fagin, the artful Dodger, the menacing Bill Sikes and the prostitute Nancy. Combining elements of Gothic Romance, the Newgate Novel and popular melodrama, in Oliver Twist Dickens created an entirely new kind of fiction, scathing in its indictment of a cruel society, and pervaded by an unforgettable sense of threat and mystery.

This is the first critical edition to use the serial text of 1837-9, presenting Oliver Twist as it appeared to its earliest readers. It includes Dickens's 1841 introduction and 1850 preface, the original illustrations and a glossary of contemporary slang.

This book is... not for everyone. But I enjoyed it, and highly recommend it for fans of classics, or Dickens fans. It's a dark tale of how the orphaned Oliver makes and name for himself, and finds himself amidst a gang of thieves, and a small group of friends.

It is dark, and covers some very dark subjects, and characters for that matter! We start with young Oliver, an orphan who lives in an orphanage along with many other children. It only gets worse from there! I had trouble getting into this book at the beginning, so it took me a while to finish, but once I was able to find something I likes it was over almost too quick!

There is a rather large group of characters for such a short story, and there are at least three 'groups' that each falls into. The ones from Oliver's former life, the 'Criminals', and the ones Oliver happen to meet upon chance, who for the most part are his friends or helpers.

Like Dickens other tales, this one is dark and twisted. A true Gothic tale with little to no hope, with a close look at true evil. As you follow young Oliver you get a glimpse at the dark underpinnings of London in the 1800s, and in a way, the world even today


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