Vanity Fair: A Novel Without a Hero
, 1924 - British
- 753 pages
"A picture of society on a broad canvas, embracing a great variety of characters and interests, the object being to depict mankind with all its faults and meannesses, without idealization or romance ... The careers of Becky Sharp, the adventuress, and her husband, Rawdon Crawley, make an apt contrast to the humdrum lives of the good hero and heroine, Dobbin and Amelia. The nobility, fashionable people about town, the mercantile aristrocracy and the needy classes below them, are all portrayed in the most lifelike way ... Thackeray combines his comment with narrative ... To many readers, indeed, his sarcastic dissertations are the chief intellectual delight." Baker. Guide to the Best Fic. *** "Becky Sharp, one of the most resourceful, engaging, and amoral women in literature, is the heroine of this sparkling satirical panorama of British society during the Napoleonic Wars." *** "Becky Sharp and her husband stand in contrast to the lives of Dobbin and Amelia in this revelation of societal classes." *** "This book is a densely populated, multi-layered panorama of manners and human frailties ... The novel deals mainly with the interwoven fortune of two women, the wellborn, passive Amelia Sedley and the ambitious, essentially amoral Becky Sharp, the latter perhaps the more memorable character Thackeray created. The adventuress Becky is the character around whom all the men play their parts." Merriam-Webster's Ency of Lit. *** "A satirical look at Victorian manners recounting the experiences of two finishing school graduates, Becky Sharp and Amelia Sedley."