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Selected Short Fiction Paperback – Jul 30 1976

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; Reprint edition (July 30 1976)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140431039
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140431032
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.6 x 19.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 358 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #710,496 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in Landport, Portsea, England. He died in Kent on June 9, 1870. The second of eight children of a family continually plagued by debt, the young Dickens came to know not only hunger and privation,but also the horror of the infamous debtors’ prison and the evils of child labor. A turn of fortune in the shape of a legacy brought release from the nightmare of prison and “slave” factories and afforded Dickens the opportunity of two years’ formal schooling at Wellington House Academy. He worked as an attorney’s clerk and newspaper reporter until his Sketches by Boz (1836) and The Pickwick Papers (1837) brought him the amazing and instant success that was to be his for the remainder of his life. In later years, the pressure of serial writing, editorial duties, lectures, and social commitments led to his separation from Catherine Hogarth after twenty-three years of marriage. It also hastened his death at the age of fifty-eight, when he was characteristically engaged in a multitude of work.

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
'In an old abbey town, down in this part of the country, a long, long while ago - so long, that the story must be a true one, because our great grandfathers implicitly believed it - diere officiated as sexton and grave-digger in the churchyard, one Gabriel Grub. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Selected Short Fiction: Brief pieces culled from Dickens' novels, periodicals and collections June 2 2008
By C. M Mills - Published on
Format: Paperback
Charles Dickens (1812-1870) is the greatest Victorian novelist. However, many readers do not turn to his shorter fiction to while away an hour or so of reading pleasure! These short gems will entertain you as the master British storyteller weaves his spell of enchantment.
The 400 page book published by Penguin English Classics includes:
Tales of the Supernatural;
The Story of a Goblin who stole a sexton is a spooky tale about a grouchy gravedigger who is stolen by Goblins on a Christmas Eve long ago.
Other stories in this section include "The Baron of Grozgwig" who learned through a ghostly apparation to enjoy the good things of life.
A Confession in the Time of Charles II is the first person narrative of a murderer who describes how his crime was discovered.
To Be Read at Dusk is a ghost story set in Switzerland. The Signalman at Mugby Junction is a harrowing tale of a dark and stormy night at a lonely railroad junction.
Impressionist Sketches-many taken from Dickens' early work "Sketches from Boz" include short articles on an election for parish beadle, Seven Dials area of London and the best of the lot: The Christmas Tree. A few other short pieces are included in this section.
This reviewer found most interesting the third section of the Penguin edition dealing with dramatic monolgues by fascinating characters drawn with Dicken's unmatched skill:
Somebody's Luggage deals with a man finding old luggage containing a mansucript. Mrs Lirriper is a cockney owner of a London lodging. She and her friend raise a small boy after the child's mother dies in the room she has rented in the Lirriper hotel. This story is very sentimental but is touching without being treacly!
Doctor Marigold's prescriptions is another touching tale about a dealer in cheap merchandise who adopts a young girl who is deaf and dumb.
Mugby Junction pokes fun at the atrocious refreshment establishments available to the British train traveler.
Charles Dickens is a genius of the printed word. These little known stories are worthy of being wider known.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Now I have an idea of what Dickens wrote when he wanted to have fun June 26 2013
By RF - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The short fiction is, for the most part, more derivative than Dickens long work, in that one can often see some kind of folk tale behind much of what I have read so far. That said, the short work is interesting because it shows a more intimate side of Dickens, I think, as well as probably some of the experimentation that went into writing his longer, more famous work.

I can't say the book is a spell-binder for me, but I enjoy it now and then.
Five Stars Sept. 6 2014
By Cecilia - Published on
Format: Paperback