HomeGroupsTalkMoreZeitgeist
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

The Old Curiosity Shop

by Charles Dickens

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,501531,777 (3.68)254
Nell Trent lives with her doting grandfather in his London shop. It is a magical place, filled from wall to wall with treasures. Grandfather keeps his nocturnal gambling activities a secret from Nell. He borrows heavily from the evil, profiteering loan shark Daniel Quilp. When Grandfather gambles away what little money they possess, Quilp seizes the opportunity to take possession of their beloved shop. It seems Nell and Grandfather are left only with the option to escape. They fall in with a number of colourful characters, some vilainous and some affectionate. They are on the run from Quilp and his band of misguided money seekers, including Nell's own brother Freddie and his gulible friend Dick Swiveller.… (more)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 254 mentions

English (48)  Spanish (4)  Swedish (1)  All languages (53)
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
The Old Curiosity Shop - Dickens' 5th book and 4th novel - is an odd fish, isn't it? Give or take Martin Chuzzlewit, it's perhaps the most confusing of his "Big Fifteen". It's been fifteen years since I first read it as a boy, and I still don't know where I stand. This is Dickens at his most Victorian, most sentimental. The long march of Nell and her Grandfather captured the public imagination in 1840 in a way that people of our era will never truly understand. At the same time, this is a world peopled with characters perhaps not as truly electric as those in Nicholas Nickleby but a little bit more real. The characters here are still, for the most part, symbols and cardboard stands, but by now, Dickens is a master at the novel's structure. The poignancy of Nell, and of the "Marchioness", and the rabid charisma of Mister Quilp, perhaps guaranteed Dickens his celebrity that would keep him in the trade for another 30 years.

I'm not sure if this is really worth 4-stars. Characters like Mrs. Quilp threaten to show signs of a personality and then fade back into the wallpaper. Predictable moment is heaped on predictable moment, glued together with endless apostrophising and moralising. This is perhaps the most dated of Dickens' serious novels. Yet it's still a compelling read, filled with rich descriptions of character and place, with a sense of social seriousness that anchors the novel far stronger than most of its contemporaries. I may never truly understand the "Little Nell mania" of the 1840s, but I can at least appreciate the man behind it. ( )
1 vote therebelprince | Apr 27, 2020 |
A despicable dwarf and a gutclenching ending. This is the story of Littlw Nell and her compulsive gambling grandfather and their trek across England after they are turned out of their Curiosity Shop home by Quilp. Other characters are Kit, Swiveler, The Single Gentleman, the Brass brother and sister, and the Marchioness. The curiosity shop is only in the first few chapters. ( )
  LindaLeeJacobs | Feb 15, 2020 |
3.5, rounded up to 4, I guess. Certainly not my favourite Dickens (that'd be [b:Bleak House|18172068|Bleak House|Charles Dickens|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1373379910l/18172068._SX50_.jpg|2960365]), but still a fine read, if you're into ginormous casts of characters and dastardly villains and Victorian melodrama, WHICH I AM. ( )
  Sonya_W | Feb 5, 2020 |
I keep trying to get people to tell me which is Dickens' best, so I won't have to read all the others. But no one helps much. Some group on the Internet said it was Bleak House, but I think that is the least favorite of the five I've read in the past year.

Based on the five books I've read so far, it appears that Dickens' stories are all pretty much the same. There's always orphans, much benighted, but stout hearted, moral and persistent. There's usually some kind of deformed villain, a ne'er-do-well sponger, a kindly old gentleman or two, an eccentric spinster, and likely a few other character types. Oh yeah, many, but not all, lawyers are conniving and grasping.

Anyway, The Old Curiosity Shop has all this in spades. It's the story of Little Nell and her grandfather, more-or-less. Also the story of Kit. There's lots of pathos, but, what's rather fun, lots of Dickens' wry humorous portrayal of the frailties of humanity. Dickens blathers incessantly, but it's such entertaining blather that one can never tire of it. I wonder why it took me so many decades to discover Dickens?
( )
  lgpiper | Jun 21, 2019 |
This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: The Old Curiosity Shop
Series: ----------
Author: Charles Dickens
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Classic
Pages: 632
Format: Digital Edition

Synopsis:


Little Nell's Grandfather runs a Curiosity Shop and everyone, including her older brother and a money lending dwarf, think he is rich as Croessus. Unfortunately, he's also a secret gambler and ends up spending every penny they have on gaming, trying to win big so Nell can live in luxury for the rest of her life.

The help, a young man by the name of Kit, is dismissed, the brother plots to marry Nell to his friend because he is still convinced the Grandfather is rich (just miserly) and the dwarf causes trouble because of his evil nature.

Nell and Grandfather take to the road and meet various characters, some good, some bad and are saved from privation and death by working at a little church in some tiny town. The Grandfather's younger brother returns from faraway parts, very well off and begins searching for his brother and Grand-niece.

The dwarf plots rot and ruin for everyone and Kit finds a kindly couple to work for and settles down pretty well. Everyone caroums off of each other and does the thing called life and at the end Nell dies, Kit marries happily, Nell's brother is killed in France by bad company and the dwarf drowns and his poor wife finally marries happily.

My Thoughts:

This felt like Dickens used Nell as the white ball in a game of billiards. It is the focus of each player but what it does is defined by how it interacts with all the other billiards. Nobody cares about the white ball very much. In the same way Nell 's importance to this story was more how she drove interactions with the other characters.

I liked all the various stories. They were great Dickens' stories but the ties that bound everything together felt a bit weak. I almost wished that there had been more of the Marchioness (another young girl who ends up marrying and helping reform another side character) and not so much Nell. Nell was not a strong person and as such didn't have the personality to drive this story forward.

Don't get me wrong, this was still a good, fun, interesting story. But it didn't have quite that “pop” that I found in some of my other reads by Dickens. Could also be that coming after the Pickwick Papers didn't do this any favors for me either.

Overall, I enjoyed this but didn't find much to say about it and nothing made me sit up and go “Awesomesauce”. Definitely on the lower end of the Dickens Ladder.

★★★★☆ ( )
1 vote BookstoogeLT | Nov 14, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (61 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Charles Dickensprimary authorall editionscalculated
Andrews, MalcolmIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Browne, Hablot KnightIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cattermole, GeorgeIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Easson, AngusEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Frank ReynoldsIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Frith, W. P.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lesser, AntonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Maclise, DanielIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Page, NormanEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Page, NormanPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schlicke, PaulEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sharp, WilliamIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wicklow, Earl ofIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Williams, SamuelIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Although I am an old man, night is generally my time for walking.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Nell Trent lives with her doting grandfather in his London shop. It is a magical place, filled from wall to wall with treasures. Grandfather keeps his nocturnal gambling activities a secret from Nell. He borrows heavily from the evil, profiteering loan shark Daniel Quilp. When Grandfather gambles away what little money they possess, Quilp seizes the opportunity to take possession of their beloved shop. It seems Nell and Grandfather are left only with the option to escape. They fall in with a number of colourful characters, some vilainous and some affectionate. They are on the run from Quilp and his band of misguided money seekers, including Nell's own brother Freddie and his gulible friend Dick Swiveller.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.68)
0.5 1
1 11
1.5 4
2 36
2.5 11
3 141
3.5 38
4 176
4.5 22
5 108

Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0140437428, 014119958X

Urban Romantics

An edition of this book was published by Urban Romantics.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 150,829,064 books! | Top bar: Always visible