Great Expectations

ISBN-10: 0553213423
ISBN-13: 9780553213423
Edition: 1986 (Reprint)
List price: $5.95 Buy it from $1.13
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Description: In the marshy mists of a village churchyard, a  tiny orphan boy named Pip is suddenly terrified by a  shivering, limping convict on the run. Years  later, a supremely arrogant young Pip boards the coach  to London where, by the grace of a  More...

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Book details

List price: $5.95
Copyright year: 1986
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 8/1/1982
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 560
Size: 4.10" wide x 6.75" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.550
Language: English

In the marshy mists of a village churchyard, a  tiny orphan boy named Pip is suddenly terrified by a  shivering, limping convict on the run. Years  later, a supremely arrogant young Pip boards the coach  to London where, by the grace of a mysterious  benefactor, he will join the ranks of the idle rich  and "become a gentleman." Finally, in the  luminous mists of the village at evening, Pip the  man meets Estella, his dazzingly beautiful  tormentor, in a ruined garden--and lays to rest all the  heartaches and illusions that his "great  expectations" have brought upon him. Dickens's  biographer, Edgar H. Johnson, has said that--except  for the author's last-minute tampering with his  original ending--Great Expectations  is "the most perfectly constructed and  perfectly written of all Dickens's works." In John  Irving's Introduction to this edition, the  novelist takes the view that Dickens's revised ending is  "far more that mirror of the quality of trust in  the novel as a whole." Both versions of the  ending are printed here.

Charles Dickens, perhaps the best British novelist of the Victorian era, was born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England on February 7, 1812. His happy early childhood was interrupted when his father was sent to debtors' prison, and young Dickens had to go to work in a factory at age twelve. Later, he took jobs as an office boy and journalist before publishing essays and stories in the 1830s. His first novel, The Pickwick Papers, made him a famous and popular author at the age of twenty-five. Subsequent works were published serially in periodicals and cemented his reputation as a master of colorful characterization, and as a harsh critic of social evils and corrupt institutions. His many books include Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, Bleak House, Great Expectations, Little Dorrit, A Christmas Carol, and A Tale of Two Cities. Dickens married Catherine Hogarth in 1836, and the couple had nine children before separating in 1858 when he began a long affair with Ellen Ternan, a young actress. Despite the scandal, Dickens remained a public figure, appearing often to read his fiction. He died in 1870, leaving his final novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, unfinished.

John Irving published his first novel at the age of twenty-six. He has received awards from the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation; he has won an O. Henry Award, a National Book Award, and an Academy Award.

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