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Oliver Twist [Kindle Edition]

Charles Dickens
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (367 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Review

The greatest writer of his time. (Edmund Wilson)

Book Description

CD and mini-hardback format ideal for easy comprehension and reading

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 690 KB
  • Print Length: 268 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1450517064
  • Publisher: Waxkeep Publishing (14 Jan. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00B1FJT0A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (367 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #43,399 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Dickens' best 24 Jun. 2004
Format:Paperback
Having read quite a lot of Dickens novels, I came quite late to Oliver Twist. I had read a children's version of it and since I knew the story, I thought I might not find it very interesting. How wrong I was!. The first chapters, although they are a very good critic of the poor workhouse conditions, were a bit dragging. But once Oliver goes to London and meets Fagin's gang, it was a pleasure to read. As in most of Dickens' works, the villains are the ones who make the story interesting. The dingy places that they live, the squalor and filth is so well described as the evil turn of their minds that the "good" people in the story, including Oliver, are quite dull compared to them. It seems Oliver is just an accessory that the plot evolves around but the bad people are the ones that draw us into it. Especially the murder, the haunting conscience and the death at the end are one of the best that I have ever read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Prince and a Pauper 23 Feb. 2010
By Sam Quixote TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Dickens' famous story of a young orphan's struggle to survive on the streets of London is rightly one of his most remembered.

Two outstanding characters have been contributed to literature - Fagin and Jack Dawkins the Artful Dodger.

Dickens writes Fagin as a puppet master, controlling the orphaned children as pickpockets and the adults like Bill Sikes as thieves. His subterfuge of a penniless pauper with a kindly approach are at odds with the moments he steals gazing at his hidden stash of jewels and his barking moments of brutality. Though his name is Fagin, Dickens refers to him more often than not as "the Jew", a label quite jarring in today's culture. Fagin is sinister though and many see him as a devil like character. His many schemes, plans, and selfishness all contribute to the image.

The Artful Dodger is a whirling dervish of charisma and charm, teaching Oliver the tricks of the trade and leading the cohorts of youngsters as the ultimate example they should all be aspiring to. Dickens chooses to have the Dodger answer for his crimes as he is finally caught and sent to jail. Tantalisingly, Dickens implies that the Dodger will be deported to Australia though we never see Dodger again after he is led away back to jail. Maybe he was thinking of writing a sequel with him as a grown up character?

Oliver is by no means a great character but a likeable one. His tribulations put us on his side early on and his base survival has us enthralled and rooting for him throughout. Bill Sikes isn't also that great a character. A one dimensional thug and bully, his character is indeed menacing and ugly but unfortunately never goes further.

Nancy meanwhile is another triumph of characterisation.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Darker than the film 19 Feb. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am working my way through Dickens - have seen the film but am glad I read the book too although it's not easy reading - the descriptions of characters and scenes are much bleaker than in the film.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Charles Dickens – Oliver Twist | Review 5 April 2014
Format:Paperback
Dickens is one of the greats, and plenty of people won’t say a word against him – I’ve read a few of his novels and I’d beg to disagree. His work often falls wide of the mark and it doesn’t always age well, but Oliver Twist is a great example of Dickens at his finest, a writer who managed to capture the essence of the Victorian age in which he lived in like no other.

I won’t bother going in to detail about the plot, because it’s one of the most famous stories ever told and you should already be familiar with what happens, but I’ll avoid spoilers just in case – suffice to say that most of the adaptations that I’ve seen fail to do Dickens justice, because it’s too difficult to capture all of the intricacies of his writing in a stage play, a film or a TV series.

In fact, if you’ve enjoyed the musical or some similar adaptation then I strongly encourage you to read the novel if you haven’t already, just to see where it started – sure, Dickens’ writing is heavy going and it’s easier to read it in small chunks than in a couple of long sittings, but it’s like that with all of the greats. It took me nearly two years to finish The Lord of the Rings trilogy because Tolkien has the same problem, if you can call it that – both authors are lovers of language, and so their work can be daunting to the casual reader.

Reading Oliver Twist is like experiencing high definition video when you’re used to watching things on an iPhone – characters like Bill Sykes take on new dimensions and become even more realistic, while Jack Dawkins, better-known as the Artful Dodger, seems almost tragic. He’s certainly a much darker character in the novel than the happy-go-lucky pickpocket that we’re used to from popular culture.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A first-rate novel 3 April 2012
By Jimbo
Format:Paperback
This was only Dickens' second novel, but it features most of the themes and characteristics that would be the hallmarks of Dickens' literary output. So, Oliver Twist take a high moral tone in seeking to draw attention to the desperate conditions that the poor lived in, populated by a succession of memorable and memorably named characters.

The book tells the story of the orphan Oliver Twist, born in a poor house and subject to mistreatment by a long succession of people. Oliver is twice saved by the intervention of wealthy individuals, and although he can at times be a somewhat blank character, he serves as a good vehicle to explore the failings of the institutional support that should serve to assist him, rather than treating him as an inconvenience. This book is full of powerful, biting sarcasm, especially in the earlier chapters before Oliver travels to London to escape the misery he endures as an undertakers apprentice.

Once in London he is drawn into the activities of a criminal gang, and this really opens up the opportunities for Dickens to create a memorable clutch of characters. The master criminal Fagin and his "head boy" the Artful Dodger are two of Dickens' most famous characters, but Bill Sikes and Nancy, Mr Grimwig and Mr Bumble and his future wife are all well drawn, well named and ultimately hugely enjoyable.

This is a book that is driven by anger at the lack of attention that society gave to the poor, but novel frequently reaches beyond this. The is especially true of the vicious murder of Nancy, which still retains the visceral power that so shocked contemporary readers. There is also much humour to be found throughout the book, with Mr Bumble's descent into marital strife really standing out.
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