Bleak House

By Charles Dickens,

Book cover of Bleak House

Book description

Esther, at fourteen, has never known love. Determined to live well, earn some love and overcome the shadow of her birth, she takes her first steps into an unknown world. A family curse, a manipulating lawyer, poverty and secrets threaten to destroy Esther's world. Are the walls of Bleak House…

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Why read it?

2 authors picked Bleak House as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

The omniscient narrator in this classic novel speaks to the reader in a dispassionate present-tense voice that helps reinforce the satirical tone and immediacy of the novel. Dickens, who grew up in a debtor’s prison and included his bleak observations of life in a debtor’s prison in many of his great novels, used his fiction to shine a light on the social injustices of Victorian life. Bleak House shines much of that light on the punitive legal system (sound like today?), which Dickens exposed in some of his other novels as well. In thinking about the many theatrical and film…

From Don's list on written in the present tense.

The lawyers and clerks who inhabit this book are recognizable types around any courthouse today. Bleak House is one of the best novels ever written in English, funny, cheerful, and tragic by turns. It also features the first detective character in English fiction. “The one great principle of the English law,” Dickens writes, “is to make business for itself.”

From Garrett's list on legal novels that you can't put down.

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