The play delves into Dickensian bathos, preposterous coincidences, abrupt reversals of fortune, the collision of improbable goodness with impossible evil—and emerges triumphant, soaring with spirit. In the process it displays the grandest theatrical techniques, affirms the rightness of love and friendship, revives pleasures and poignancies that have all but vanished from modern narrative art.
The indestructible Dickens story includes high drama and low comedy, vividly drawn characters in the author's bravura style, melodramatic situations and contrasting subtle scenes...the playgoing experience of a lifetime.
...it is big, sweeping theatre of a kind you are unlikely to encounter more than once in a lifetime.
Let me put it simply and plainly. The Royal Shakespeare Company in THE LIFE AND ADVENTURES OF NICHOLAS NICKLEBY is one of the great theatrical experiences of our time.
Fans of the graphic novel appreciate how the genre can lead a reluctant reader to literature in a highly entertaining and palatable way, albeit through a mostly abridged edition. The Whole Story series takes this approach to a more satisfying level and offers an illustrated (cartoons, maps, photographs, diagrams, paintings), annotated (history, geography, pop culture, social customs, animal world, architecture, literature, and science), and historical perspective approach to unabridged great literature. This tremendous series for grades six though twelve can be used in several waysas an interdisciplinary textbook, a simple yet powerful springboard for discussion, or as a quite enjoyable read. Wilde's Dorian Gray is just one in this colorful series that includes The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Around the World in Eighty Days, A Christmas Carol, The Call of the Wild, Frankenstein, and White Fang. This series is important precisely because of its presentation. The heavy glossy pages are illustrated lushly with images that assist the reader in understanding the work's own political, artistic, historical, and cultural world in a most modern of designs. A perfect addition to the curriculum, books within the series are suitable for both the reluctant and avid reader and are highly recommended purchases for all public libraries and middle to senior high school media centers. Illus. VOYA CODES: 5Q 4P M J S (Hard to imagine it being any better written; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2001, Viking, 272p, $25.99, $17.99 Trade pb. Ages 12 to 18. Reviewer: Stefani KooreySOURCE: VOYA, August 2001 (Vol. 24, No. 3)
Gr 10 Up-"The Whole Story" format provides illustrations and annotations to the classic text. Ross's lively and sophisticated cartoons add interest, and historical information helps readers place the novel in proper context and gives insight into its characters. The problem with this attractive, glossy layout, however, is that the text and the quotes pulled from it are not always on the same page. Further, some illustrations and notations visually cut into the narrative and may distract readers. For example, a drawing appears on the first page along with the passage, "In the centre of the room, clamped to an upright easel, stood the full-length portrait of a young man of extraordinary personal beauty," but that quote does not appear until the second page of the story. Useful as a supplement to the original novel, but not a replacement for it.-Karen Hoth, Marathon Middle/High School, FL Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
"Dickens is huge—like the sky. Pick any page of Dickens and it’s immediately recognizable as him, yet he might be doing social satire, or farce, or horror, or a psychological study of a murderer—or any combination of these." —Susannah Clarke, author, Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell
"The novel has everything: an absorbing melodrama, with a supporting cast of heroes, villains and eccentrics, set in a London where vast wealth and desperate poverty live cheek-by-jowl." —Times