Charles Dickens' first novel (well, sort of) really hits the spot. I have read many of his other books, and I can see now why people fell in love with him. Don't read this if you are in need of a novel with a clear beginning, middle, and end plot where you can clearly define the point and follow events. However, if you enjoy Dickens' mind and his humor, you MUST read this. Then you ought to read it again. What a hilarious, heart-warming story full of the beloved (and reviled) characters Dickens is so well known for. Read it!
Okay, the BOOK is awesome, of course, it's Dostoevsky. And I SOOO appreciate the availability of classics at a low price. But it is kind of disgusting to have the narrator BURPING - not to mention making unedited mistakes and such. I think I'll go ahead and pay for my subscription and not try to get these classics for this low price.
I've listened to, and read, this book about 5 times now. Wow. One of my favorite books of all time, and Gregory Maguire is now one of my favorite authors of all time! What I like is that he does not do a hack-job of changing the tales that he writes about (also in Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, etc.), he writes a full and complete novel which would be as enjoyable to anybody who had never even heard of the Wizard of Oz, and then makes it all that much more enjoyable for everybody who is able to relate to all the happenings. What an incredible "point of view" game he plays! And Elpheba really comes across as more interesting BY FAR than Dorothy (if not more "good"). Note - if you like this, immediately get Son of a Witch and listen to that. And GM, come on out with the third one, please!
Odd is great reading when no actual thought is necessary. You gotta love this character, his adventures are hilarious, and it's nice to take a break from "heavy literature" and just read a nice little story like Odd Thomas stories sometimes.
Reading this was weird, as I have always considered it one of my mom's books. Remember that weird thorn picture in the big orange circle, sitting on mom's book shelf for the entire 70's, 80's while growing up? I sure do! But finally I tackled it (aged 35) and WOW! I'm no "literary" critic or anything, but I do know a fantastic novel when I read one. This rates HIGH. The characters were fantastic (though the non-marrying of the brothers was, admittedly, unbelievable, and made me wonder if CM just couldn't work up any more characters because they'd get in the way?) and multi-faceted. The surprising climax caused me minutes of SOBBING (always fun when listening to books at work!) and the ending was hopeful and sappy, and I loved it. No wonder everybody loves this so much - I can't imagine the movie could do the novel justice, though.
My title doesn't suggest such a high rating, but the fact is, the book is wonderful. There are some great plots and sub-plots, and I love how they all interact - classic Dickens. And I think John is a good man, all in all. However, one of my favorite Dickens characters, Bella, does one thing slightly wrong - she really did need to at least punch John or scratch his eyes out a little or something when the "truth" is revealed to her. Seriously, like you want to hug and shake your kid when you find them after having lost them for awhile - I find this a very unrealistic reaction, not only for people in general, but for the character of Bella. But still, a great read, a wonderfully entertaining book!
This is my favorite of all the Dickens novels, and Nicholas is my favorite of all Dickens heroes! I do love David Copperfield, of course, but Nicholas has my heart. I realize the characters Dickens creates are pretty, schmaltzy, is that the word?, but I love them, and I wish I could meet somebody like Nicholas Nickleby. Though the end is, of course, predictable, it is the happily-ever-after ending I always love from Dickens.
I found it easier to understand this novel by checking out some stuff about it on SparkNotes, as it was sometimes difficult to follow all the characters (one good thing about physical novels), but it was absolutely hilarious and still completely as relevant today as it was when written. And now I actually know where the phrase came from!
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