Oliver Twist, Or, The Parish Boy's Progress

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Penguin, 2003 - Fiction - 553 pages
7 Reviews
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 Bentley's Miscellany serial text of 1837-9, showing 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.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bikerevolution - LibraryThing

"Please, sir, may I have summore?" This book is one of my all time favorites. A classic, Dickens paints a portrait of the struggles of a poor orphan in turn-of-the-century London. Yes, Fagan "the Jew ... Read full review

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Yes, Dickens at his best!! This book is easy to read, involving, and very informative vis a vis industrial revolution era England. It's a great book that leaves you with a sense of good and truth in the midst and concurrent with hardship. In addition the reader gets a journey through Dickens era English, always helpful in enriching one's vocabulary and comprehension of the English language. 

Selected pages

Contents

List of Illustrations
vii
Acknowledgements
viii
A Dickens Chronology
ix
Introduction
xiii
Further Reading
xlv
A Note on the Text
l
OLIVER TWIST
1
The Authors Introduction to the Third Edition 1841
456
Preface to the Cheap Edition 1850
461
Glossary of Thieves Cant and Slang
465
List of Chapters
478
Map of London in 1837
481
Notes
485
Selected Textual Variants
530
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in Landport, Portsea, England. He died in Kent on June 9, 1870. The second of eight children of a family continually plagued by debt, the young Dickens came to know not only hunger and privation,but also the horror of the infamous debtors’ prison and the evils of child labor. A turn of fortune in the shape of a legacy brought release from the nightmare of prison and “slave” factories and afforded Dickens the opportunity of two years’ formal schooling at Wellington House Academy. He worked as an attorney’s clerk and newspaper reporter until his Sketches by Boz (1836) and The Pickwick Papers (1837) brought him the amazing and instant success that was to be his for the remainder of his life. In later years, the pressure of serial writing, editorial duties, lectures, and social commitments led to his separation from Catherine Hogarth after twenty-three years of marriage. It also hastened his death at the age of fifty-eight, when he was characteristically engaged in a multitude of work.


Philip Horne has spent a decade looking at the thousands of James's letters in archives in the United States and Europe. A Reader in English Literature at University College, London, he is the author of Henry James and Revision and the editor of the Penguin Classics edition of James's The Tragic Muse.

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