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Oliver Twist (Penguin Classics) by Charles…
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Oliver Twist (Penguin Classics) (edition 2003)

by Charles Dickens (Author)

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18,584180162 (3.84)756
The adventures of an orphan boy who lives in the squalid surroundings of a nineteenth century English workhouse until he becomes involved with a gang of thieves.
Member:Grey_Coopre
Title:Oliver Twist (Penguin Classics)
Authors:Charles Dickens (Author)
Info:Penguin Classics (2003), Edition: Reissue, 608 pages
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Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

  1. 31
    Jack Dawkins by Charlton Daines (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Unauthorised sequel about the life of the Artful Dodger as an adult when he returns to England.
  2. 86
    The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (Leishai)
  3. 10
    The Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton (Waldstein)
    Waldstein: Another look at Victorian corruption and crime. More comprehensive and more sinister.
  4. 11
    Tom Jones by Henry Fielding (swampygirl)
  5. 11
    The Good Thief by Hannah Tinti (derelicious)
  6. 12
    The Adventures of Nathaniel Swubble: The Story of a Parish Boy's Childhood by Lilian Margaret Spencer (millylitre)
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English (161)  Spanish (6)  Dutch (3)  German (3)  Swedish (2)  French (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (177)
Showing 1-5 of 161 (next | show all)
Oliver is an orphan living on the dangerous London streets with no one but himself to rely on. Fleeing from poverty and hardship, he falls in with a criminal street gang who will not let him go, however hard he tries to escape.

One of the most swiftly moving and unified of Charles Dickens’s great novels, Oliver Twist is also famous for its re-creation–through the splendidly realized figures of Fagin, Nancy, the Artful Dodger, and the evil Bill Sikes–of the vast London underworld of pickpockets, thieves, prostitutes, and abandoned children. Victorian critics took Dickens to task for rendering this world in such a compelling, believable way, but readers over the last 150 years have delivered an alternative judgment by making this story of the orphaned Oliver Twist one of its author’s most loved works.
  Fredo68 | Jun 29, 2020 |
[Reviewed as part of The Illustrated Book Club]

This is Dickens' second novel, first published in serial form over 2 years. Later Dickens, from the bits I've read, may come across as more polished and sophisticated, but all the typical ingredients are here: the genius for characterisation, the biting social satire, and - unfortunately - the sometimes mawkish sentimentality that he seems to have shared with his fellow Victorians (I'm reminded of Oscar Wilde's typically ruthless observation that “One must have a heart of stone to read the death of little Nell without laughing”).

Some of the social observation and banter now seem either dated or impenetrable to a modern reader (q.v. the Dodger, Fagin and Master Bates (!)), but I'm sure they were spot on for a contemporary one. Taken as social commentary, the heartlessness of the parish workhouse system is laid bare mercilessly: the pompous hypocrisy of Mr Bumble the Beadle and the parish board members; the mercenary Mrs Corney, starving her charges into an early grave. I doubt there was much exaggeration needed on Dickens' part, and any sentimentality is far outweighed by such keen eyed dissection of human faults and prejudices embedded in the system. It's great stuff.

The other downside concerns the charge of anti-semitism. Dickens, it seems, was no anti-semite - or at least he vehemently denied it, merely arguing that it was a common fact of the street that most criminals of Fagin's class were Jews. However, Fagin is not the only Jewish character in the novel, and it seems fair to say that Dickens does little to dispel harmful racist stereotypes, and much (if inadvertently) to promote them. But then maybe the fact that Fagin remains one of his most popular and well-known characters - a lovable and charming rogue - is something that should argue in his favour (though possibly this is more due to Ron Moody's portrayal than his depiction in the novel). Let readers make up their own mind.

Gareth Southwell is a philosopher, writer and illustrator.
  Gareth.Southwell | May 23, 2020 |
Written in 1837, during Dickens' astronomical rise to success, Oliver Twist is his third major work, second novel, and the negative counterpart to its exact contemporary, The Pickwick Papers. One could argue it's still the work that has had the greatest impact on the public psyche: Dodger, Fagin, Nancy, and Bill loom large in the collective cultural consciousness, don't they? Who can forget Oliver asking for more, or the climactic tightrope walk? In truth, this is not a brilliant work. Only Fagin has any sparks of internal life, and he's an unfortunate anti-Semitic caricature common to the era. Oliver Twist, carrying the torch from some of Dickens' sentimental Sketches is a rather lifeless little twig. What works in the story is the vividness of "low" culture, and Dickens' already fierce moral stance on the inhumanity of much of 19th century English culture. Certainly a worthwhile read, but possibly the least of Dickens' "Big Fifteen". The relatively straightforward Twist will give way to the diffuse, picaresque Nicholas Nickleby, and then the real Dickens will be formed. ( )
  therebelprince | Apr 27, 2020 |
Fine condition with original cover and brilliant illustrations
  JamesLemons | Apr 26, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 161 (next | show all)
Oliver Twist, a meek, mild young boy, is born in the workhouse and spends his early years there until, finding the audacity to ask for more food, he is made to leave. Apprenticed to an undertaker by Mr Bumble, Oliver runs away in desperation and falls in with Fagin and his gang of thieves where he begins his new life in the criminal underworld.

Under the tutelage of the satanic Fagin, the brutal Bill Sikes and the wily Artful Dodger, Oliver learns to survive, although he is destined not to stay with Fagin but to find his own place in the world.

With its terrifying evocation of the hypocrisy of the wealthy and the depths to which poverty pushes the human spirit, Oliver Twist is both a fascinating examination of evil and a poignant moving novel for all times.
added by letonia | editPenguin Popular Classics
 

» Add other authors (185 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Charles Dickensprimary authorall editionscalculated
Allen, Walter ErnestPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cruikshank, GeorgeIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fairclough, PeterEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ghiuselev, IassenIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hayens, KennethIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Heilig, Matthias R.abridged bysecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hoppé, E.O.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Horne, PhillipEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
House, HumphryIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Howe, IrvingIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jarvis, MartinNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Johnson, EdgarIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kelk, C.J.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Le Comte, EdwardAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lee, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Leopoldo de Verneuil, EnriqueTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Méndez Herrera, JoséTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mahoneij, J.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Margolyes, MiriamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
May, NadiaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Muller, JillIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nix, GarthIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Oddera, BrunoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Slater, MichaelIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Smith, Lawrence BeallIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tillotson, Kathleensecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vance, SimonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilson, AngusIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Among other public buildings in a certain town, which for many reasons it will be prudent to refrain from mentioning, and to which I will assign no fictitious name, there is one anciently common to most towns, great or small: to wit, a workhouse; and in this workhouse was born; on a day and date which I need not trouble myself to repeat, inasmuch as it can be of no possible consequence to the reader, in this stage of the business at all events; the item of mortality whose name is prefixed to the head of this chapter.
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Penguin Australia

6 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141439742, 0451529715, 0141031719, 0141322438, 0141192496, 0141198885

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