Monday, April 30, 2012

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens




You may have determined by now that when I review a book I write mostly about how I liked it and why. I will leave the details of themes and plots and other mysteries to those more qualified than I. I write only as a person who loves to read.

I now know where two quotes I've often heard actually come from . . . A Tale of Two Cities. What quotes? See if you recognize them.

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--

and

It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known. 


I never read this book in school or any other time. I don't know why. It was always on my to do list and now it is done. 
I read this book in installments through DailyLit.com which is a great way to receive novels through your email a bit at a time.  I really enjoyed it. Enjoy isn't really the appropriate word but a better word escapes me right now.

Charles Dickens is a master at blending stories with twists and turns and amazing surprises. There is intrigue, danger and adventure. There is love and romance and trust and family. This book has everything and it is so masterfully written that you are constantly on tenterhooks, wondering what will happen next. The plot is very complex and includes several characters with hidden pasts that come back to haunt them in the shadow of Madame Guillotine during the French Revolution. Dickens also has a habit of commenting on the times in which he was writing and offers many comparisons between the the horror of the Revolution and the peoples involved in Paris with the suffering and intrigues of the people in London England . . . in this way it is truly a tale of two cities.

Don't be nervous. Pick up this classic novel and thrill to the adventures within.