The Selected Letters of Charles Dickens (Hardcover)

By Jenny Hartley (Editor)

Oxford University Press, USA, 9780199591411, 458pp.

Publication Date: March 2, 2012



Charles Dickens's letters provide vivid close-up snapshots of a life lived at maximum intensity. This volume offers the first selection to be made from the magisterial twelve-volume British Academy Pilgrim Edition of his letters. From over fourteen thousand, editor Jenny Hartley has cherrypicked four hundred and fifty to give readers the essence of "the Sparkler of Albion." This eagerly awaited selection takes us straight to the heart of his life, to show us Dickens at first hand. Here he is writing out of the heat of the moment: as a novelist, journalist, and magazine editor; as a social campaigner and traveler in Europe and America; and as friend, lover, husband, and father. These letters were an outlet for his high spirits, sparkling wit, and caustic commentary--striking glimpses of the world around him, as seen through his highly individual and acutely observing eye. Whether you dip in or read straight through, this selection of his letters captures anew the brilliance of Dickens and the sheer pleasure of being in his company.

About the Author

Jenny Hartley is Professor of English Literature at Roehampton University. Her recent Charles Dickens and the House of Fallen Women was a Guardian Book of the Week and hailed as "brilliant" by Claire Tomalin.