Brought into the world by a drunken nurse and an inept surgeon, innocent young Oliver Twist couldn’t have known the mysterious circumstances surrounding his birth—that his mother had been discovered wandering the streets, near bursting with child, and had died ignominiously on the cold bed of a workhouse, having just pushed the little boy from her womb and into the uncertain future shared by thousands of other orphans throughout England.
This classic novel by Charles Dickens was among the first to expose the pitiless conditions of England’s orphanages, and an early example of the social novel—fiction meant to effect change by shining a dramatized light on a public ill. Readers were almost as shocked by the novel’s blade-edged sarcasm as they were scandalized by its stark depictions of ruinous orphanages and corrupt clergy.
“Poor Oliver Twist has quite a tough life in the beginning. He is an orphan who is brought up in one bad home after another with pretty much no love at all. Like Harry Potter and many other sympathetic characters, Oliver’s youth is not one to be envied. The tale primarily deals with his early life for the first half until he is drawn in with a band of criminals and makes a few friends and meets a few good people along the way until befalling a near tragedy. The second half of the book is more about the other characters involved in his saga.
Oliver Twist starts off very down and gloomy in many parts and while that scenery doesn’t change, the tone definitely does toward the end. It is worth reading for sure and another tome in the classics of Charles Dickens. This version contains some illustrations as well which were very well done and appropriate.” – Amazon Review