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Charles Dickens was born in 1812 near Portsmouth, where his father worked as a clerk. Living in London in 1824, Dickens was sent by his family to work in a blacking-warehouse, and his father was arrested and imprisoned for debt. Fortunes improved and Dickens returned to school, eventually becoming a parliamentary reporter. His first piece of fiction was published by a magazine in December 1832, and by 1836 he had begun his first novel, The Pickwick Papers. He focused his career on writing, completing fourteen highly successful novels, as well as penning journalism, shorter fiction and travel books. He died in 1870.
Gr 7-12-Dickens' satire on the Victorian family and the philosophies of a society which sought to turn men into machines. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Hard Times is Dickens's most political novel. Taking place in the industrial burg of Coke-town, the drama among the characters illustrates the author's view of the dehumanizing effects of industrialization and utilitarianism on the lives of all involved and is essentially a "moral fable" illustrating the principle that one reaps what one sows. VERDICT Anton Lesser, a classical actor and an award-winning audiobook reader, gives a spirited reading, bringing out the character of each persona-the dictatorial Gradgrind, the pompous Bounderby, and the meek Sissy-with skill and verve. An entertaining and captivating listening experience; all libraries should consider. [See the Dickens roundup, p. 68.-Ed.]-Michael T. Fein, Central Virginia Community Coll. Lib., Lynchburg (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.