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Charles Dickens

Widely recognised as a literary genius and the author of classics including Oliver Twist, Great Expectations and A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens was born in Landport, Hampshire on 7 February, 1812. Dickens first rose to fame with The Pickwick Papers, a novel that was originally published in serial form.

One of the most famous figures from the Victorian era, many of Charles Dickens’ books have been adapted into various different media including theatre shows, TV series and films. With his wit and incredible storytelling skills, much of his work was satirical and remains relevant to this day.


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Charles Dickens Books

  • A Christmas Carol

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: AAQ3
    Paperback
    Hand-picked favourites
    Ebenezer Scrooge is a miserly old skinflint. He hates everyone, especially children. But at Christmas three ghosts come to visit him, scare him into mending his ways, and he finds, as he celebrates with Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and their family, that geniality brings its own reward. This finest of all Christmas stories is beautifully illustrated with Arthur Rackham's superb line drawings.
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  • Great Expectations

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: BTZRC
    Paperback 11 years +
    `Hold your noise!' cried a terrible voice, as a man started up from among the graves at the side of the church porch. `Keep still, you little devil, or I'll cut your throat!' So begins Charles Dickens's 1861 bildungsroman, the story of the orphan Pip who is catapulted from the desolate Kent marshes of his childhood to become a young gentleman in London. Who is Pip's mysterious benefactor? And what role will the troubling figures of escaped convict Magwitch, decaying bride Miss Havisham and the beautiful but aloof Estella play in his prospects? Told through the first-person voice of the older Pip, this story of great expectations suggests gains always come at a price. Dickens depicts both the horrors of the early nineteenth-century penal system and the rapid rise and fall of fortunes that Victorian society permitted. This Collins Classroom Classics edition includes an introduction and glossary to support students, written by an experienced teacher.
  • David Copperfield

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZIU
    Paperback
    Introduction and Notes by Dr Adrienne Gavin, Canterbury Christ Church University College. Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). Dickens wrote of David Copperfield: 'Of all my books I like this the best'. Millions of readers in almost every language on earth have subsequently come to share the author's own enthusiasm for this greatly loved classic, possibly because of its autobiographical form. Following the life of David through many sufferings and great adversity, the reader will also find many light-hearted moments in the company of a host of English fiction's greatest stars including Mr Micawber, Traddles, Uriah Heep, Creakle, Betsy Trotwood, and the Peggoty family. Few readers, arriving at the end of David Copperfield, will not wish to echo Thackeray's famous praise, having read the first monthly part - 'Bravo Dickens'.
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  • A Tale of Two Cities

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJE
    Paperback
    A Tale of Two Cities (1859), Dickens' greatest historical novel, traces the private lives of a group of people caught up in the cataclysm of the French Revolution and the Terror. Dickens based his historical detail on Carlyle's great work - The French Revolution. 'The best story I have written' was Dickens' own verdict on A Tale of Two Cities, and the reader is unlikely to disagree with this judgement of a story which combines historical fact with the author's unsurpassed genius for poignant tales of human suffering, self-sacrifice, and redemption.
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  • Great Expectations

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZHU
    Paperback
    Considered by many to be Dickens' finest novel, Great Expectations traces the growth of the book's narrator, Philip Pirrip (Pip), from a boy of shallow dreams to a man with depth of character. From its famous dramatic opening on the bleak Kentish marshes, the story abounds with some of Dickens' most memorable characters. Among them are the kindly blacksmith Joe Gargery, the mysterious convict Abel Magwitch, the eccentric Miss Haversham and her beautiful ward Estella, Pip's good-hearted room-mate Herbert Pocket and the pompous Pumblechook. As Pip unravels the truth behind his own 'great expectations' in his quest to become a gentleman, the mysteries of the past and the convolutions of fate through a series of thrilling adventures serve to steer him towards maturity and his most important discovery of all - the truth about himself.
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  • Oliver Twist

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: AKJIN
    Paperback 9 years +
    The classic story of a young boy who seeks his fortune on the streets of London. After Oliver Twist asks nasty Mr Bumble for more food, he has to flee the workhouse for the streets of London. Here he meets the Artful Dodger, who leads him to Fagin and his gang of pickpockets. When a thieving mission goes wrong, Oliver narrowly avoids prison and finds himself in the care of kind Mr Brownlow. But Fagin and the brutal Bill Sikes go in search of the young orphan, determined to drag him back...With an inspirational and light-hearted introduction by Garth Nix, "Oliver Twist" by Charles Dickens is one of the twelve wonderful classic stories being relaunched in "Puffin Classics" in March 2008.
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  • A Christmas Carol

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: BLWUV
    Paperback 9 years +
    Ebenezer Scrooge is a miserly old skinflint. He hates everyone, especially children. But at Christmas three ghosts come to visit him, scare him into mending his ways, and he finds, as he celebrates with Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and their family, that geniality brings its own reward. This finest of all Christmas stories is beautifully illustrated with Arthur Rackham's superb line drawings.
  • The Old Curiosity Shop

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJF
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Peter Preston, University of Nottingham. Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz) and George Cruickshank. The Old Curiosity Shop (1840-41), with its combination of the sentimental, the grotesque and the socially concerned, and its story of pursuit and courage, which sets the downtrodden and the plucky against the malevolent and the villainous, was an immediate popular success. Little Nell quickly became one of Dickens' most celebrated characters, who so captured the imagination of his readers that while the novel was being serialised, many of them wrote to him about her fate. Dickens was conscious of the 'many friends' the novel had won for him, and 'the many hearts it turned to me when they were full of private sorrow', and it remains one of the most familiar and well-loved of his works.
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  • Oliver Twist

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZKU
    Hardback
    Dickens' timeless novel transports young readers to a colorful Victorian England filled with mistreated orphans, grim workhouses and gangs of thieving children. The hero finds himself in dire circumstances but escapes to London, where he becomes involved with criminals...and finally finds a real home. Abridged for easier reading and carefully rewritten, with "Classic Starts[trademark]", young readers can experience the wonder of timeless stories from an early age.
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  • The Pickwick Papers

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZHJ
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by David Ellis, University of Kent at Canterbury. With Illustrations by R.Seymour, R.W. Buss and Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). The Pickwick Papers is Dickens' first novel and widely regarded as one of the major classics of comic writing in English. Originally serialised in monthly instalments, it quickly became a huge popular success with sales reaching 40,000 by the final part. In the century and a half since its first appearance, the characters of Mr Pickwick, Sam Weller and the whole of the Pickwickian crew have entered the consciousness of all who love English literature in general, and the works of Dickens in particular.
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  • A Christmas Carol

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJD
    Paperback
    HarperCollins is proud to present its new range of best-loved, essential classics. 'I am the Ghost of Christmas Present,' said the Spirit. 'Look upon me!' A celebration of Christmas, a tale of redemption and a critique on Victorian society, Dickens' atmospheric novella follows the miserly, penny-pinching Ebenezer Scrooge who views Christmas as 'humbug'. It is only through a series of eerie, life-changing visits from the ghost of his deceased business partner Marley and the spirits of Christmas past, present and future that he begins to see the error of his ways. With heart-rending characters, rich imagery and evocative language, the message of A Christmas Carol remains as significant today as when it was first published.
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  • Great Expectations

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZHE
    Paperback
    HarperCollins is proud to present its new range of best-loved, essential classics. 'Take nothing on its looks; take everything on evidence. There's no better rule.' Living with his sister and her husband, Pip is an orphan without any expectations. It is only when he begins to visit a rich old woman, Miss Havisham and her adopted niece that he begins to hope for something better. When it is revealed that Pip has inherited a large sum of money from a mysterious benefactor on the condition that he moves to London to become a gentleman, Pip's adventure really begins. Epic, illuminating and memorable, Dickens mysterious tale of Pip's quest to find the truth about himself is one of his most enduring and popular novels to date.
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  • Martin Chuzzlewit

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJZ
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Dr John Bowen, Department of English, University of Keele. Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). Martin Chuzzlewit is Charles Dickens' comic masterpiece about which his biographer, Forster, noted that it marked a crucial phase in the author's development as he began to delve deeper into the 'springs of character'. Old Martin Chuzzlewit, tormented by the greed and selfishness of his family, effectively drives his grandson, young Martin, to undertake a voyage to America. It is a voyage which will have crucial consequences not only for young Martin, but also for his grandfather and his grandfather's servant, Mary Graham with whom young Martin is in love. The commercial swindle of the Anglo-Bengalee company and the fraudulent Eden Land Corporation have a topicality in our own time. This strong sub-plot shows evidence of Dickens' mastery of crime where characters such as the criminal Jonas Chuzzlewit, the old nurse Mrs Gamp, and the arch-hypocrite Seth Pecksniff are the equal to any in his other great novels. Generations of readers have also delighted in Dickens' wonderful description of the London boarding-house - 'Todgers'.
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  • The Mystery of Edwin Drood

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZHT
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Peter Preston, University of Nottingham. Illustrations by S.L. Fildes and Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). Dickens's final novel, left unfinished at his death, is a tale of mystery whose fast-paced action takes place in an ancient cathedral city and in some of the darkest places in nineteenth-century London. Drugs, sexual obsession, colonial adventuring and puzzles about identity are among the novel's themes. At the centre of the plot lie the baffling disappearance of Edwin Drood and the many explanations of his whereabouts. A sombre and menacing atmosphere, a fascinating range of characters and Dickens's usual superb command of language combine to make this an exciting and tantalising story. Also included in this volume are a number of unjustly neglected stories and sketches, with subjects as different as murder and guilt and childhood romance. This unusual selection illustrates Dickens's immense creativity and versatility.
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  • Complete Ghost Stories

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZKB
    Paperback
    Interest in supernatural phenomena was high during Charles Dickens' lifetime. He had always loved a good ghost story himself, particularly at Christmas time, and was open-minded, willing to accept, and indeed put to the test, the existence of spirits. His natural inclinations toward drama and the macabre made him a brilliant teller of ghost tales, and in the twenty stories presented here, which include his celebrated A Christmas Carol, the full range of his gothic talents can be seen. Chilling as some of these stories are, Dickens has managed to inject characteristically grotesque comedy as he writes of revenge, insanity, pre-cognition and dream visions, he indulges also in some debunking of contemporary credulity.
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  • Dombey and Son

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJG
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Karl Ashley Smith, University of St Andrews. Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). Mr Dombey is a man obsessed with his firm. His son is groomed from birth to take his place within it, despite his visionary eccentricity and declining health. But Dombey also has a daughter, whose unfailing love for her father goes unreturned. 'Girls' said Mr Dombey, 'have nothing to do with Dombey and Son'. When Walter Gay, a young clerk in her father's office, rescues her from a bewildering experience in the streets of London, his unforgettable friends believe he is well on his way to receiving her hand in marriage and inheriting the company. It is to be a very different type of story. Dombey and Son moved grown men to tears (Thackeray despaired of 'writing against such power as this'), but its rich, comic characters and their joyful explosions of language draw laughter with equally unerring magic.
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  • Barnaby Rudge

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJL
    Paperback
    Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz) and George Cattermole, with a new Introduction by Cedric Watts, Research Professor of English, University of Sussex. This vivid historical and political novel by Dickens is centred on the infamous 'No Popery' riots, instigated by Lord George Gordon, which terrorised London in 1780. Dickens' targets are prejudice, intolerance, religious bigotry and nationalistic fervour, together with the villains who exploit these for selfish ends. His intense account of the riots is interwoven with the mysterious tale of a long-unsolved murder and with a romance involving forbidden love, treachery and heroism. Barnaby Rudge abounds in memorably strange, comic and grotesque characters. Furthermore, recent historical events have renewed its political topicality.
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  • Bleak House

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZIX
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Doreen Roberts, University of Kent at Canterbury. Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). Bleak House is one of Dickens' finest achievements, establishing his reputation as a serious and mature novelist, as well as a brilliant comic writer. It is at once a complex mystery story that fully engages the reader in the work of detection, and an unforgettable indictment of an indifferent society. Its representations of a great city's underworld, and of the law's corruption and delay, draw upon the author's personal knowledge and experience. But it is his symbolic art that projects these things in a vision that embraces black comedy, cosmic farce, and tragic ruin. In a unique creative experiment, Dickens divides the narrative between his heroine, Esther Summerson, who is psychologically interesting in her own right, and an unnamed narrator whose perspective both complements and challenges hers.
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  • Little Dorrit

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZKA
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Peter Preston, University of Nottingham. With Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz). Little Dorrit is a classic tale of imprisonment, both literal and metaphorical, while Dickens' working title for the novel, Nobody's Fault, highlights its concern with personal responsibility in private and public life. Dickens' childhood experiences inform the vivid scenes in Marshalsea debtor's prison, while his adult perceptions of governmental failures shape his satirical picture of the Circumlocution Office. The novel's range of characters - the honest, the crooked, the selfish and the self-denying - offers a portrait of society about whose values Dickens had profound doubts. Little Dorrit is indisputably one of Dickens' finest works, written at the height of his powers. George Bernard Shaw called it 'a masterpiece among masterpices', a vedict shared by the novel's many admirers.
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  • Our Mutual Friend

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZJY
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by Deborah Wynne, Chester College. Illustrated by Marcus Stone. Our Mutual Friend, Dickens' last complete novel, gives one of his most comprehensive and penetrating accounts of Victorian society. Its vision of a culture stifled by materialistic values emerges not just through its central narratives, but through its apparently incidental characters and scenes. The chief of its several plots centres on John Harmon who returns to England as his father's heir. He is believed drowned under suspicious circumstances - a situation convenient to his wish for anonymity until he can evaluate Bella Wilfer whom he must marry to secure his inheritance. The story is filled with colourful characters and incidents - the faded aristocrats and parvenus gathered at the Veneering's dinner table, Betty Higden and her terror of the workhouse and the greedy plottings of Silas Wegg.
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  • To be Read at Dusk

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: AYNSH
    Paperback
    'The monstrous thought came into my mind as I perused the fixed eyes and the saturnine face, that this was a spirit, not a man.' Three ghostly tales from a master of the form, 'The Signalman', 'The Trial for Murder' and the title story, 'To Be Read at Dusk'. One of 46 new books in the bestselling Little Black Classics series, to celebrate the first ever Penguin Classic in 1946. Each book gives readers a taste of the Classics' huge range and diversity, with works from around the world and across the centuries - including fables, decadence, heartbreak, tall tales, satire, ghosts, battles and elephants.
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  • Penguin English Library Edition: Oliver Twist

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ADKXK
    Paperback 11 years +
    'A parish child - the orphan of a workhouse - the humble, half-starved drudge - to be cuffed and buffeted through the world, despised by all, and pitied by none'. After the brutal care of the workhouse, the orphan Oliver Twist falls into the more welcoming arms of a den of thieves. But the sinister Fagin's grip is not light, and life in the underworld where Oliver now finds himself often ends in a noose ...Mordantly funny, with some of the most memorably drawn characters in all of fiction - including the arch-villain Fagin, menacing Bill Sikes and the artful Dodger - Dickens' novel is a cutting social satire, imbued with a high moral sense and an air of threat and mystery.
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  • Oxford Reading Tree Treetops Classics: Level 17 More Pack A: Oliver Twist

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: AIXLE
    Paperback 7 years +
    Oliver Twist tells the story of Oliver's struggle with life. After suffering the hardships of the workhouse, he is thrust into a life in the dark underworld of the London streets. Oliver struggles to escape from the evil Fagin and Sikes who are determined to ruin his life. Exciting and powerful classic stories to enrich and extend your children's reading experiences. TreeTops Classics are carefully adapted versions of must-read stories which introduce your readers to significant authors, powerful plots and characters that have stood the test of time. These abridged versions of classics have been sensitively adapted by top children's authors to ensure that language and content is appropriate, but remain faithful to the original. These enchanting stories will appeal to all your junior readers and introduce them to a rich literary heritage. Each book includes author biographies and notes to help with historical and social context and any challenging vocabulary, ensuring the books are easily accessible. Books contain inside cover notes to support children in their reading. Help with children's reading development also available at www.oxfordowl.co.uk. The books are finely levelled, making it easy to match every child to the right book.
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  • Charles Dickens: The BBC Radio Drama Collection

    Charles Dickens

    Product Code: ASZHF
    Audio
    Thrilling full-cast radio dramatisations of three of Charles Dickens' classic novels. Charles Dickens is one of the most renowned novelists of all time, and this second volume of the dramatised canon of his work includes the gripping historical novel Barnaby Rudge, picaresque comedy Martin Chuzzlewit and bittersweet tale of family relationships Dombey and Son. Barnaby Rudge Against the background of the anti-Catholic riots of the 1780s, young Barnaby Rudge becomes entangled with the fanatical George Gordon and his campaign for 'No Popery'. But mob violence, the burning of Newgate Prison and the shadow of murder put his life in danger...Martin Chuzzlewit - disinherited by his wealthy grandfather because of his love for the beautiful Mary, Martin Chuzzlewit sets sail for America to seek his fortune. Dombey and Son Wealthy Paul Dombey is desperate for a male heir to continue the family business, and neglects his six-year-old daughter Florence. Then, at last, the longed-for son is born - but Dombey's hopes for him go unfulfilled...With a star cast including Simon Cadell, Bill Nighy, Alex Jennings, Robert Glenister, Geraldine James and Pam Ferris, these BBC radio adaptations bring out all the suspense, adventure, satire and social realism of Dickens' three classic masterpieces. Duration: 19 hours approx.
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