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Great Expectations

Charles Dickens

Book Overview: 

This classic tale tells of an orphan, Pip, who through a series of strange circumstances first finds a trade as a blacksmith’s apprentice and then learns that he has “great expectations” of a future inheritance from an anonymous benefactor. He soon learns to live the profligate life of a gentleman as he gradually sheds his associations with the gentle souls of his past, Joe (the blacksmith) and Biddy (a level-headed young lady). He throws his money at improving the prospects of his roommate and friend Herbert and his heart at an “ice princess” whose heart will never respond. But then an escaped convict from his distant past comes calling, and all Pip’s hopes dissolve.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . . was quiet in a corner, and, putting me before the fire as if I were going to be cooked, would begin by saying, "Now, Mum, here is this boy! Here is this boy which you brought up by hand. Hold up your head, boy, and be forever grateful unto them which so did do. Now, Mum, with respections to this boy!" And then he would rumple my hair the wrong way,—which from my earliest remembrance, as already hinted, I have in my soul denied the right of any fellow-creature to do,—and would hold me before him by the sleeve,—a spectacle of imbecility only to be equalled by himself.

Then, he and my sister would pair off in such nonsensical speculations about Miss Havisham, and about what she would do with me and for me, that I used to want—quite painfully—to burst into spiteful tears, fly at Pumblechook, and pummel him all over. In these dialogues, my sister spoke to me as if she were morally wrenching one of my teeth out at every reference; while. . . Read More

Community Reviews

”I saw that the bride within the bridal dress had withered like the dress, and like the flowers, and had no brightness left but the brightness of her sunken eyes. I saw that the dress had been put upon the rounded figure of a young woman, and that the figure upon which it now hung loose had shrun...more

"Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day."

That is such a quote. If there was ever a novel that shows us the dangers of false perceptions...more

Admittedly, I can be a bit dismissive of the classics. By which I mean that many of my reviews resemble a drive-by shooting. This annoys some people, if measured by the responses I’m still getting to my torching of Moby Dick.

Even though I should expect some blowback, I still get a little defensi...more

Great Expectations…were formed...were met…and were thoroughly exceeded!

The votes have been tallied, all doubts have been answered and it is official and in the books ...I am a full-fledged, foaming fanboy of Sir Dickens and sporting a massive man-crush for literature’s master story-teller*.

*Qui...more

My students (and some of my friends) can't ever figure out why I love this novel so much. I explain how the characters are thoroughly original and yet timeless, how the symbolism is rich and tasty, and how the narrative itself is juicy and chock-full of complexity, but they just shake their heads...more

Μ αρέσει η γεύση που σου αφήνουν κάποια βιβλία στο μυαλό.
Η μυρωδιά που πλυμμηρίζει την ψυχή και την αναστατώνει, αφήνοντας της για πάντα αναμνήσεις.
Η μελωδία που βλέπεις να παίζεται μπροστά στα μάτια σου και να σε παρασύρει σε τοπία και μέρη του κόσμου που ίσως να είναι φανταστικά, ξεχασμένα, α...more

A young, amiable boy Philip Pirrip with the unlikely nickname of Pip, lives with his older, by twenty years, brutal, ( no motherly love, that's for sure ) unbalanced married sister, Georgiana, his only relative which is very unfortunate, strangely the only friend he has is Joe, his brother-in -la...more

“You are in every line I have ever read.”

Why couldn't every line in this book be this good? I took me nearly three whole months to finish it. Not because it was bad, but because it dragged and dragged and there are far more intriguing books out there than Great Expectations.

The good stuff:
An exci...more

هل سنكون سعداء عندما تتحقق امالنا العريضة؟؟سؤال مرعب قد يدور في أذهان المتفلسفين منا..
طلاب مدارس اللغات يعلمون ان هناك 4تعاونوا على تعذيبهم..شكسبير.. والأختين برونتي ...و تشارلز ديكنز..
و لكن تظل لامال عريضة مكانا في عقلى و قلبي ..فمن خلالها تعرفت على أسلوب النقد البريطاني المنظم..وأيضا تعرفت على...more

“There was a long hard time when I kept far from me the remembrance of what I had thrown away when I was quite ignorant of its worth.”
I first read Great Expectations when I was thirteen years old. It was the first of Dickens' works that I'd read of my own volition, the only other being Oliver...more

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