From a bitter childhood mired in poverty and hard work to a
career as the most acclaimed and best-loved writer in the
English-speaking world, Charles Dickens had a life as tumultuous as
any he created in his teeming novels of life in Victorian England.
And no one has captured the rich texture of this life as colorfully
and persuasively as Fred Kaplan in this acclaimed biography.
Drawing on unpublished and long-forgotten sources, Kaplan presents
a full-scale portrait of Dickens and his world. From the
autobiographical basis of his novels and his extraordinary circle
of friends to the course of his unhappy marriage and complicated
family relations, Kaplan reveals the restless compulsions, private
passions, and professional concerns that drove Dickens to
unprecedented literary success. Kaplan details Dickens''s often
stormy dealings with his publishers and his carefully cultivated
relationship with readers, heightened through amateur theatricals
and numerous public readings in Britain and North America.
Brilliantly written and thoroughly researched, Dickens
provides an absorbing and perceptive account of its subject as a
singularly complex man and a consummate artist, offering readers
new insights into Dickens''s-and literature''s-greatest works,
works such as Bleak House, David Copperfield, Great
Expectations, and Oliver Twist.