The Life of Charles Dickens (3 Volume Set)

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Overview

John Forster (1812-76), an exact contemporary of Charles Dickens, was one of his closest friends, and acted for him (as for many other authors) as advisor, editor, proofreader, agent and marketing manager: according to Thackeray, 'whenever anyone is in a scrape we all fly to him for refuge. He is omniscient and works miracles.' Forster was Dickens' literary executor, and was left the manuscripts of many of the novels, which he in turn left (along with the rest of his magnificent library) to the South Kensington ...

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The Life of Charles Dickens

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Overview

John Forster (1812-76), an exact contemporary of Charles Dickens, was one of his closest friends, and acted for him (as for many other authors) as advisor, editor, proofreader, agent and marketing manager: according to Thackeray, 'whenever anyone is in a scrape we all fly to him for refuge. He is omniscient and works miracles.' Forster was Dickens' literary executor, and was left the manuscripts of many of the novels, which he in turn left (along with the rest of his magnificent library) to the South Kensington Museum (later the Victoria and Albert Museum). He was ideally placed to write a biography of Dickens, having known him since the 1830s, and having been involved in deeply private matters including Dickens' separation from his wife. This three-volume account, first published 1872-4, is reissued here from early printings; many further reprints and editions followed over the course of the nineteenth century.

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Table of Contents

Volume 1: 1. 1812-22. Childhood; 2. 1822-4. Hard experiences in boyhood; 3. 1824-30. School days and start in life; 4. 1831-5. Reporters' gallery and newspaper literature; 5. 1836. First book, and origin of Pickwick; 6. 1837. Writing the Pickwick Papers; 7. 1837 and 1838. Between Pickwick and Nickleby; 8. 1838. Oliver Twist; 9. 1838-9. Nicholas Nickleby; 10. 1838-9. During and after Nickleby; 11. 1839. New literary project; 12. 1840-1. The Old Curiosity Shop; 13. 1840. Devonshire Terrace and Broadstairs; 14. 1841. Barnaby Rudge; 15. 1841. Public dinner in Edinburgh; 16. 1841. Adventures in the Highlands; 17. 1841. Again at Broadstairs; 18. 1841. Eve of the visit to America; 19. 1842. First impressions of America; 20. 1842. Second impressions of America; 21. 1842. Philadelphia, Washington, and the South; 22. 1842. Canal boat journeys: bound Far West; 23. 1842. The Far West: to Niagara Falls; 24. 1842. Niagara and Montreal. Volume 2: 1. 1842. American Notes; 2. 1843. First year of Martin Chuzzlewit; 3. 1843-4. Chuzzlewit disapointments and Christmas Carol; 4. Year of departure for Italy; 5. 1844. Idleness at Albaro: Villa Bagnerello; 6. 1844. Work in Genoa: Palazzo Peschiere; 7. 1844. Italian travel; 8. 1845. Last months in Italy; 9. 1845-6. Again in England; 10. 1846. A home in Switzerland; 11. 1846. Swiss people and scenery; 12. 1846. Sketches chiefly personal; 13. 1846. Literary labour at Lausanne; 14. 1846. Revolution at Geneva, Christmas Book, and last days in Switzerland; 15. 1846-7. Three months in Paris; 16. 1846-8. Dombey and Son; 17. 1847-52. Splendid strolling; 18. 1848-51. Seaside holidays; 19. 1848-50. Haunted Man and Household Words; 20. 1848-51. Last years in Devonshire Terrace. Volume 3: 1. 1850-3. David Copperfield and Bleak House; 2. 1853-5. Home incidents and Hard Times; 3. 1853. Switzerland and Italy revisited; 4. 1853, 1854, and 1856. Three summers at Boulogne; 5. 1855, 1856. Residence in Paris; 6. 1855-7. Little Dorrit, and a lazy tour; 7. 1857-8. What happened at this time; 8. 1856-70. Gadshill Place; 9. 1858-9. First paid readings; 10. 1859-61. All the Year Round and the Uncommercial Traveller; 11. 1861-3. Second series of readings; 12. 1855-65. Hints for books written and unwritten; 13. 1864-7. Third series of readings; 14. 1836-70. Dickens as a novelist; 15. 1867. America revisited. November and December, 1867; 16. 1868. America revisited. January to April, 1868; 17. 1868-70. Last readings; 18. 1869-70. Last book; 19. 1836-70. Personal characteristics; 20. 1869-70. The end; Appendix; Index.

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