Wednesday, April 23, 2014

48:120 Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Ok, for those who have not read this here's the brief synopsis.  Pip is orphaned and living with his sister and her husband who is a blacksmith.  He meets a girl and dreams of being something more to have a chance of becoming worthy of her.  He gets a surprise benefactor who thrusts upon him "great expectations".  He turns into a jerk.  Girl doesn't care about him being a jerk or his "great expectations" and marries someone else.  The benefactor is not whom he had been assuming it was for years.  His life gets turned upside down and nothing went as he expected it.  The End.

There are a few more twists and turns (almost all of which are completely predictable) but those are the salient points.  It was a 490 page book.  It slogged and dragged.  I understand that some people get really into his language but I personally find it pedantic and lethargic.  It doesn't move, it doesn't paint a picture for me, it's dull and plodding.  My son had to read this for his book club and he didn't finish on time even with a month.  I am of the opinion even though I don't run that book club that I will read what he does for it so I read this around my own book club reads.  It's finally over and I'm glad it's over and I don't really care that I can now say I've read it.  I think the story itself might have been interesting if I'd ever actually cared about any of the characters but the narrator turned into a complete a$$ once he got into money, his friend wasn't fleshed out enough (although he was probably one of the more interesting characters), the one assistant lawyer again was sort of interesting but was more a ploy to get information to the character than a full-fleshed character himself.  I get that the story was supposed to teach a lesson about virtues and decisions and all that but I was hoping that Pip had hung with Magwitch for aiding and abetting because he was just so unlikable.  Maybe if Pip had been likable to any extent, or the book was half as long so it moved at a decent pace but as written....Blech!

Page count: 490p/11,885p ytd/192,877p lifetime

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