Great Expectations

The Sons and Daughters of Charles Dickens

By Robert Gottlieb
(Farrar Straus Giroux, Hardcover, 9780374298807, 239pp.)

Publication Date: November 27, 2012

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The strange and varied lives of the ten children of the world's most beloved novelist

Charles Dickens, famous for the indelible child characters he created--from Little Nell to Oliver Twist and David Copperfield--was also the father of ten children (and a possible eleventh). What happened to those children is the fascinating subject of Robert Gottlieb's "Great Expectations." With sympathy and understanding he narrates the highly various and surprising stories of each of Dickens's sons and daughters, from Kate, who became a successful artist, to Frank, who died in Moline, Illinois, after serving a grim stretch in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Each of these lives is fascinating on its own. Together they comprise a unique window on Victorian England as well as a moving and disturbing study of Dickens as a father and as a man.

About the Author
Robert Gottlieb is Henry R. Luce Professor of Urban Environmental Studies at Occidental College in Los Angeles. He is the author of "Environmentalism Unbound: Exploring New Pathways for Change "(2001), and "Reinventing Los Angeles: Nature and Community in the Global City" (2007), both published by the MIT Press, and other books.
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