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Great Expectations

The Sons and Daughters of Charles Dickens
Gottlieb, Robert (Book - 2012 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Great Expectations
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Charles Dickens, famous for the indelible child characters he created--from Little Nell to Oliver Twist and David Copperfield--was also the father of ten children (and a possible eleventh). What happened to those children is the fascinating subject of Robert Gottlieb's Great Expectations. With sympathy and understanding he narrates the highly various and surprising stories of each of Dickens's sons and daughters, from Kate, who became a successful artist, to Frank, who died in Moline, Illinois, after serving a grim stretch in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Each of these lives is fascinating on its own; together they comprise a unique window on Victorian England as well as a moving and disturbing study of Dickens as a father and as a man.--From publisher description.
Authors: Gottlieb, Robert, 1931-
Title: Great expectations
the sons and daughters of Charles Dickens
Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012.
Edition: 1st ed.
Characteristics: 239 p. :,ill. ;,22 cm.
Contents: The Dickenes
"Why was I ever a father!"
Part One: 1837-1870
Charley
Mamie
Katey
Walter
Frank
Alfred
Sydney
Henry
Dora
Plorn
Part two: 1870-1933
After Dickens's death
Charley
Mamie
Kate
Frank
Alfred
Sydney
Henry
Plorn
The eleventh child
Afterthoughts
Dickens's other children.
Summary: Charles Dickens, famous for the indelible child characters he created--from Little Nell to Oliver Twist and David Copperfield--was also the father of ten children (and a possible eleventh). What happened to those children is the fascinating subject of Robert Gottlieb's Great Expectations. With sympathy and understanding he narrates the highly various and surprising stories of each of Dickens's sons and daughters, from Kate, who became a successful artist, to Frank, who died in Moline, Illinois, after serving a grim stretch in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Each of these lives is fascinating on its own; together they comprise a unique window on Victorian England as well as a moving and disturbing study of Dickens as a father and as a man.--From publisher description.
Local Note: 15 29 33 53 76 80 109 118 133
ISBN: 0374298807
9780374298807
Statement of Responsibility: Robert Gottlieb
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references p. [243-244]).
Subject Headings: Dickens, Charles, 1812-1870 Family.
LCCN: 2012004997
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Mar 28, 2013
  • bwortman rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

A biography of Dickens' ten children is no easy task and Gottlieb creates a highly readable book. Dividing the book into the childrens' lives while Dickens was alive and after his death is an intriguing structure although providing their lifespans in both halves of the book rather than just the first would have made things a little clearer for me. The children themselves are interesting cast of characters with disparate lives in the army in India, Australian sheep stations, and as painters (among others). However, Gottlieb makes broad sweeping statements about the nature of each of the children without providing substantial enough evidence to keep some of them from rubbing me the wrong way. Additionally, the lack of any citations in text irritate me as well. An interesting introduction but not a thorough academic source for individuals interested in the Dickens children.

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Version pocillo (pocillo) Last updated 2014/08/21 13:32