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Penguin Classics Our Mutual Friend Paperback – Feb 2 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 928 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classic (Feb. 2 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140434976
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140434972
  • Product Dimensions: 20 x 12.9 x 4.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 621 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #236,831 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
IN these times of ours, though concerning the exact year there is no need to be precise, a boat of dirty and disreputable appearance, with two figures in it, floated on the Thames, between Southwark Bridge which is of iron, and London Bridge which is of stone, as an autumn evening was closing in. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on Aug. 27 1999
Format: Paperback
Yes Yes Yes
Dickens writes a towering saga of greed and love and jealousy and manifold other emotions.
At times it seems as though the happy ending will never come, yet at the end wrong is righted and the heroine wed.
Forget this book as great literature - it probably is -(I'm just not pompous enough to say so) This book is a book that makes you glad you read it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 31 1999
Format: Hardcover
Charles Dickens novel "Our Mutual Friend" is by far the best novel I've read to date. He masterfully portrayed Victorian London society, and the overwhelming emphasis of money at that time. In this novel Dickins work is similar to that of Jane Austen, aside from the dark underlying settings the novel at times goes. This book by far to me, is a story of how love conquers all, even money.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on Jan. 14 1999
Format: Hardcover
I was first drawn to this book when I watched the mini-series on PBS and thought it facinating. So many reviews said it was "dark and dreary", but I found it to show the humor in so many outragous situations. The book presented a good handful of characters who were extremely selfish and greedy, yet through Dickens' amazing skills they became good once more. He shows that people are not one sided, nor can they ever be. They have a well of emotions and usually don't know why they do what they do.
Yes, the book may have a dark and complicated twist to it, but everyday life is not a walk through the park. It is full of tough decisions that we must face head on. Dickens' showed this brilliantly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 20 1998
Format: Paperback
Some may say that it is one of Dickens' darkest novels, but I only see the humor and the intricacy. This is a novel where he focuses on greed and hypocrisy. The sub-plots are masterfully inter-woven with the main plot (surrounding John Harmon's inheritance) and there is a surprise twist in the end, which makes everything come out blissful. (Like most of Dickens' novels.)
Dickens explores some of the bizarre occupations that might have been found in old London. For example: Dress-Maker for Dolls, Taxidermist/Curator of Human Bones, Street Sales of Ballads and Folk-songs, and (of course) Purchaser/Processor of Garbage (or "Dust").
There are so many examples of brilliant and hilarious stories he uses to illustrate human nature that, to begin to list them (which I could) would not do them justice.
Sure, there may be some dark subjects, but that is part of Dickens' creativity and therefore part of this masterpiece--full of intrigue and dark humor. My all! -time favorite novel.
Note: The Penguin edition always has good notes at the back of the book to explain dated references.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 19 1997
Format: Hardcover
There are at least half a dozen moments in Charles Dickens' Our Mutual Friend, the last book the great master was to complete before his death, when it becomes clear to the reader that he/she has left the London of nineteenth century earth for one deep inside the nightmare landscape of sleep. This is an angry, disturbing book (as all books by old men are), one that presents a vision of a great city coming apart at the seams and stuffed with sinners of all shapes and sizes. At the same time, and this is what makes Dickens both a great artist and a great humanist, there are flashes of beauty and humor that literally bring tears to one's eyes. At a time when so many of our own great cities are on the verge of imploding, there is no one hundred year old novel more pertinent--or saddingly familiar
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By Ruth Gerrard on June 20 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was purchased for my son and is the beginning of his planned Classics library and was unaware of the Nonesuch editions prior to receiving this item. He is so delighted with the format and substantial appearance of "Our Mutual Friend" he has requested all future Dickens purchases be the Nonesuch editions.
This has been one of my most successful purchases.
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By Pierre Gauthier TOP 500 REVIEWER on Nov. 11 2012
Format: Audio CD
Apparently, this is the last complete novel written by Charles Dickens.

Certainly, it is not his best.

The number of characters in this novel is astounding. The situation is worsened by the fact some of them change their name (more than once) ... and that some others change their personality, apparently for no reason.

There are many convoluted plots that often do not intersect each other significantly. Any pretense of verisimilitude is abandoned.

In this audio version, the narrator's outstanding performance alleviates the burden.

Still, this work cannot be seriously recommended to anyone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By B. Morse on July 15 2002
Format: Paperback
In the works of Charles Dickens, a reader can find many valuable life lessons threaded into the myraid plots, subplots, and character diversions. In Our Mutual Friend, those life lessons are no less abundant than in other works that I have read.
Perhaps the darkest Dickens novel, in terms of plot-driving devices; murders, theft, blackmail, beatings and the lot, the reader is left to derive the lesson each is there to offer. The story, lacking in a real hero or heroine as a focal point, is a far bleaker portrait of English society than in his past works.
However, woven into these dim themes, Dickens has interjected his typical wit and joviality to lighten even the blackest of plot twists.
Of course the usual roster of colorful, lively Dickens characters grace the pages of this book, although the novel is seemingly bereft of a hero and heroine, at least in the traditional sense. However; the denizens of Dickens' world in this novel will entertain and enchant every bit as much as in his other works.
Dickens imparts many words of wisdom in the pages of this book, his last completed novel: Money cannot buy happiness; be careful what you wish for; keep your friends close and your enemies closer; and many other time-honored cliches that stand true today.
For a good time, call Charles Dickens. His novels never fail to deliver.
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