Happy Birthday, Charles Dickens! (Little Dorrit “Challenge”)

Charles Dickens at his Desk in 1858 – This was from Wikimedia and I make no claim to ownership

Today, February 7, is Charles Dickens’ birthday. This an author who needs little or no introduction, being perhaps the most famous 19th century English language author.  Even if they haven’t read a word, everyone knows A Christmas Carol, can quote the opening lines of A Tale of Two Cities and most likely can summarize Oliver Twist.  There are other big name books, like David Copperfield, Bleak House, Great Expectations, etc. 

Dickens is known for some of the most colorful characters created in the English language.  He also pushed for social reform and helped improve the lot of the average British citizen.  He is often thought of as the greatest, most influential British author since William Shakespeare. 

Anyway, the man is well known and well respected.

Recently I was talking to Yvette Prior on one of my posts.  She had brought up Dickens’ book Little Dorrit, a work that I do not know.  I was surprised to find out that this is a lot of people’s favorite Dickens’ book.  Wow.  I would expect it to be one of the ones listed above, or the other half dozen that I know better, like The Old Curiosity Shop (of course the main character in that book’s last name is Trent, so…).  No, for many it is Little Dorrit.

Talking to Yvette about it, we decided to both read the work and discuss it in posts on or around June 9, which is the anniversary of Dickens’ death.  We don’t have it nailed down yet, but we were thinking of an open discussion.  And we planned on inviting others to join as well.

That is where this post comes in.  And where you come in…

Would you like to join us?  We don’t have a sign up sheet or anything at this time, but we will do some type of blog party or link up on June 9.  That gives you four months to read the book.

Are you ready?  I have my copy right here!

We’ll announce it again later, as we get closer, but I wanted to give you a warning so you can start reading – it is a huge book!

Oh, and if reading this great work of fiction and talking about in our blog party it isn’t incentive enough, we have decided to do a raffle: everyone who joins in with the Little Dorrit Link Up on June 9th will be entered to win.  We will be raffling off two books and a $25 Amazon gift card and perhaps miscellaneous surprise items.

(Go visit Yvette and see what she has to say about the challenge :) )

19 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, Charles Dickens! (Little Dorrit “Challenge”)

  1. Pingback: If We Were Having Coffee on the 13th of February, 2021 | Trent's World (the Blog)

  2. Gary A Wilson

    I just finished the BBC series of Little Dorrit. They nailed the Dickenson atmosphere but I’ve not read the book. I have and have read several others, the more well known. I do think the BBC video series is worth watching.

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Yvette had seen that series, and it was her talking about it that brought up the idea. She really liked it, but thought the actress playing Dorrit could have been better. I’ve seen other BBC adaptations of Dickens’ works, and they always do a great job.

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      1. Gary A Wilson

        Agreed but I blamed the writers for weaknesses I saw with the main character. In the final scenes she suddenly loves the man who had admired her all along but there was no hint of this coming so it came off as crammed in at the last moment. Could not have been the actress” fault. The supporting material simply wasn’t there. I enjoyed it anyway.

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  3. Prior...

    hey trent – the way you worded this post was perfect
    and looks like we already have one person joining us – corin said she was in (in the comment here so right on)

    ;)
    anyhow – have a good day and glad we followed up with the idea – i am starting my reading of the book next weekend

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. Corina

    Can you believe that I have NEVER read Dickens? Somehow I got through high school without being assigned Great Expectations like all the other freshman English classes had to read. And I made it through college without Dickens, too. And I was a lit major! The only reason I know A Christmas Carol is because you can’t not know it. And the only reason I know Great Expectations is because my sister had to read it in ninth grade so I sort of heard a lot about it. So I guess that and the fact that I just downloaded it for free on Kindle means that I am in. Looking forward to it!

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  5. Pingback: Happy Birthday, Charles Dickens! (Little Dorrit “Challenge”) – priorhouse blog

    1. trentpmcd Post author

      I’ve only read three or four of his works – they are great, but I usually spend reading time on newer works (Little Dorrit is long!). Thanks. If it ends up being just me and Yvette, not a problem, but I do hope more join in :)

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  6. notestowomen

    I have watched screen adaptions of his books and have enjoyed them very much. He was a great writer. A Tale of Two Cities is my favorite with the famous lines, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”

    Liked by 2 people

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      lol, when I said most could quote the beginning, I was thinking of that first famous couple of phrases. That paragraph you quoted is classic and shows why he is so well loved. I’ve seen a few adaptions, but have only read three or four of his works. I’m looking forward to Little Dorrit, even if it is long!

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  7. tidalscribe

    I haven’t read it either, though I did see a BBC dramatisation years ago. Sounds like a fun idea so I hope to join in. When my younger son was a teenager he cottoned on to the fact that you could get classic Dickens paperbacks at WH Smith for only £1, so that is what he bought my aunt and uncle for birthday and Christmas presents. They were delighted with his interest in great literature and very happy to rediscover Dickens!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply
    1. trentpmcd Post author

      That is pretty funny about your son. The copy I picked up was less than four dollars, including shipping, so it is still possible to get great (non-copyrighted) literature for next to nothing. I think the version Yvette watched was the 2008 BBC series, so it may have been the same one you saw. I hope you can join in.

      Liked by 1 person

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