Customer Reviews


89 Reviews
5 star:
 (62)
4 star:
 (13)
3 star:
 (6)
2 star:
 (2)
1 star:
 (6)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
From its first publication in book form after the serialisation, Little Dorrit has always proved to be a good seller. So why has this book always been so popular? For whole segments Amy 'Little' Dorrit does not even appear. The novel covers so much more than the title implies.

Little Dorrit is born in the Marshalsea, where her father is imprisoned for debt...
Published on 21 May 2008 by M. Dowden

versus
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good on characterisation poor on plot
Warning: this review contains spoilers.

The major strengths of the novel are its characters and atmosphere. Every character is sharply drawn, we can visualise them in our mind's eye; Dickens has the ability to invest each of them with their own distinctive speech patterns. He can also create atmosphere whether it be describing the Marshalsea or the interior of...
Published on 9 Nov 2008 by Mr. T. Harvey


‹ Previous | 1 29 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 21 May 2008
By 
M. Dowden (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
From its first publication in book form after the serialisation, Little Dorrit has always proved to be a good seller. So why has this book always been so popular? For whole segments Amy 'Little' Dorrit does not even appear. The novel covers so much more than the title implies.

Little Dorrit is born in the Marshalsea, where her father is imprisoned for debt. Eventually he is released at the end of book one, when he comes into an inheritance. For Mr Dorrit this leads to paranoia that people are talking behind his back or laughing at him due to his former poverty. Poor little Dorrit finds it difficult to change her ways and is still a ministering angel to all and sundry.

What really stands out in this book are the locations, as the story travels from London through France, Switzerland and Italy. This is the most widespread geographically of any of Dickens' novels. Also this book probably has the most sub-plots of any Dickens novel, with mention of murder and smuggling, to actual acts of corruption and suicide, to love, marriages and death. Mrs Clennam tries to keep a family secret buried but is being blackmailed, and is her house haunted or is there a more rational explanation?

As to be expected with Dickens there are some great characters and some good comedy. Anyone who has ever had any dealings with govermental departments can really appreciate the Circumloction Office, and its practices. A few of the illustrations in this book are some of the very best to appear in any of his novels.

This is a must read book, that with so many things going on throughout will keep you absorbed for hours, and that you will want to read again.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Little Dorrit, 18 Jun 2009
By 
T. J. Huins (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Little Dorrit (Audio CD)
A vivid and detailed tale of Victorian England, which has many similarities to present day Britain. A really masterful story by Charles Dickens, graphically narrated by Anton Lesson, another master of his profession. It has more than 10 hours of story, ideal for a long car journey or enlightening another pile of ironing or a long winter's evening. We wholeheartedly recommend it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars American spellings, 22 Feb 2009
By 
Michael Bell (Shipley, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I was a bit put-off by a previous review that claims that this book has been changed to american spellings but went ahead and got it anyway as I thought that the illustrations were worth it (they are). I have found that the book has not been americanised (just opened it at random to page 362 and almost the first word I see is 'endeavour' - english version. It does conntain some olde english spellings, eg trousers is spelt as trowsers (not pants).
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dickens at what he does best!, 20 Nov 2008
Little Dorrit is a prime example of Dickens' weighty descriptive style and his genius for observation and characterisation. It also, perhaps unusually for Dickens, has a semi-coherent story line.
The book chronicles the respective fortunes of the title heroine, a young women caring for her incarcerated father in the Marshalsea Prison, and Mr Arthur Clennam, a kindly businessman returned lately from the east, who becomes obsessed with the idea that his father was responsible for the Dorrit families woes. An entrie host of characters, good and bad, amusing and obnoxious, accompany the main protagonists on their mysteriously intertwined journeys. The only fault I can find is with the tale's finale, when it seems Dickens grows tired of the story, not actually having a great twist for the climax, and bumps off many of his characters before ending with a rather predictable chocolate tin finish. However, your sense of achievment at having penetrated deeper into the world of Dickens, meeting memorable heroes and villains will probably overcome any misgivings on this score. The scene where Mr Pancks cuts the patriarch's hair is pure genius and the petulant Mr Dorrit, Flora Casby and her objectionable Aunt are another constant stream of entertainment.
Apart from the moral that money will not buy you happiness, Dickens also used this book to launch a scathing criticism against the government and society of the time, represented by the infamous Circumlocution Office and a certain affluent couple named Merdle.
An excellent read for all those who have a reasonable grasp of the English language or have enjoyed other Dickens books.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Little Dorrit, 24 Jan 2009
This review is from: Little Dorrit (Paperback)
A truly superb story and a must for everyone,whether a fan of Dickens or not
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Little Dorrit, 1 Feb 2009
By 
S. M. Burns "SMB" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Little Dorrit (Paperback)
For me, a great book, Dickens' meticulous attention to detail sets the plot and through the book the story line develops, sub plot within plot. I enjoyed the book very much, as I have all dickens' books I've read. SMB
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good on characterisation poor on plot, 9 Nov 2008
By 
Warning: this review contains spoilers.

The major strengths of the novel are its characters and atmosphere. Every character is sharply drawn, we can visualise them in our mind's eye; Dickens has the ability to invest each of them with their own distinctive speech patterns. He can also create atmosphere whether it be describing the Marshalsea or the interior of Mrs Clennam's house. He is wonderful at creating a scene, of placing his characters in that scene and exploring the interaction of each.

The weakness of the novel is its plot. It never really gains momentum and there is always a sense of stasis, of things about to develop, but never doing so. We are presented with a series of tableaux and then, suddenly, something happens with no relation to anything that has gone before. Much is left unexplained; we are never told what Doyce's invention actually is, we are given no clue as to the nature of Merdle's financial dealings, his downfall just happens. The Dorrits suddenly become rich halfway through the novel. It dosen't convince.

A warning about this Penguin edition. For some inexplicable reason, American spellings are used throughout (eg 'honor' instead of 'honour'). I am not sure why this has been done and as certain Victorian spellings are also used, it makes even less sense. Some readers may find this annoying and would prefer to read a different edition.

A bonus of the Penguin edition, though, is the inclusion of the original illustrations.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic classic, 20 Jun 2009
By 
Gaynor Thomas "Bosslady" (Wales) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Little Dorrit (Paperback)
Oh how I loved this book! I am a huge fan of Dickens but recently real life has taken over and I never seem to have the time I need to devote to reading "proper literature". I read lots, but usually crime fiction as it is plot driven and so keeps me picking the book back up again in any spare minute I have. But I really enjoyed the TV adaptation of this, so I put the book on my Christmas list and found that I actually couldn't put it down! I don't know what it is about Dickens but I adore the way he writes and it was a real pleasure to immerse myself in his language and his world for the few weeks it took me to read this massive tome. The characters spoke to me and became my friends and I was really sorry to say goodbye to them when the story came to an end.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, well cast Dickens adaptation, 15 Feb 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Having recently tried to follow the BBC TV adaptation on various nights,as if it were part of an obstacle course, it is much easier to follow the main lines of the plot in this version. Dickens' novels don't fillet easily, but this adaptation, for the ears only, has all the atmosphere and characterisation that one could wish. The BBC have much experience in such adaptations and with Ian McKellen's authoritative narrator one never feels lost. Both adaptations omit the reasons for the spooky noises in the house, but to get that and much else, you have to read the original novel, to which this is an excellent painless enjoyable primer. Good sound.Little Dorrit (BBC Radio Collection)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection, 24 May 2013
By 
Mr. J. M. Haines (Merseyside) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
As most Dickens fans know, the honest ones that is, our fav' could be wordy, flowery, over-metaphorical and all the rest. But here, he gets the lot right, all 900 odd pages, every single page. The style of the writing - freer than was his norm, plainer than was his norm, and of course brilliant, which was quite often his norm. For new readers, don't let the huge chunk of compressed paper staring at you from the shelf put you off, this is such a good read you won't even notice it.

Little Dorrit is the lynchpin of the tale, a young girl born in prison due to her father being a debtor, was born almost a saint. The rest of her family, father included, are very different : William Dorrit the father - ideas above his station, or to be fair cannot let go of his previous station despite his being whisked off to the Marshalsea and promptly staying there for many years. Brother Edward, a waster or at best wasteful; sister Fanny - enjoys the status of tuppencehapenny snob or real snob depending on her social standing at any one time. But Amy or as she is called, Little Dorrit, carries her father and the rest of the family through; the elder siblings know but don't appreciate this, the father has no clue at all, thinking his privileged position in prison (clean cell, clean clothes and regular meals) are all due at first, to his prior social status, and later, internal status through being the oldest inmate -'Father of the Marshalsea' as this person is called, but it is not : Little Dorrit is going to work every single day, and skips meals and comforts to ensure her father has his. And this is the basis of a very comprehensive saga; the young lady captivates every one she comes into contact with, and her simple loving character is something which a great many others around her, privileged or poor, greatly benefit from.

As usual, many side characters and sub plots ensure that much Victorian glue was in need for the first editions, and some of these are very very important to the tale. This of course means the classic Dickens weaving is there with their inherent coincidences and surprises (which I know annoy some but I don't mind them), and these wrap around, spin away and come back again, right through to the end of the tale.

There is much more to cover of course, but, many more generations will come to know the great man's work in years to come, and I am just doing my non-spoilery bit to save marring their enjoyment of this great tale - Charles Dickens' best work ever - at least I think so.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 29 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Little Dorrit
Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens (Audio CD - 1 July 2008)
24.89
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews