Celestial Timepiece

Charles Dickens: A Life by Claire TomalinJoyce Carol Oates reviews Charles Dickens: A Life by Claire Tomalin in the New York Review of Books:Is Dickens the greatest of English novelists? Few would contest that he is the most English of great English novelists, and that his most accomplished novels—Bleak HouseGreat ExpectationsLittle DorritDombey and SonOur Mutual Friend, and David Copperfield—are works of surpassing genius, thrumming with energy, imagination, and something resembling white-hot inspiration.

His gift for portraiture is arguably as great as Shakespeare’s, and his versatility as a prose stylist is dazzling

Dickens is so brilliant a stylist, his vision of the world so idiosyncratic and yet so telling, that one might say that his subject is his unique rendering of his subject, in an echo of Mark Rothko’s statement, “The subject of the painting is the painting”—except of course, Dickens’s great subject was nothing…

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One thought on “

  1. It is so subjective-a novelist-one important factor is if you enjoy their work.It needn’t be “important”in someone else’s estimation.

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