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A Sample Book Review of "Great Expectations"

How would you feel if you wake up one day to find out someone who is willing to spend a lot of money to make a gentleman out of you? And how would you feel if that person who wants to remain anonymous initially, turns out to be a convict whom you once met in your childhood? “Great Expectations”, a novel by famous English writer Charles Dickens, has a similar story. With his best-known books David Copperfield, Oliver Twist, A Christmas Carol and A Tale of Two Cities; Charles Dickens is back again with the theme of a youth’s discovery of the realities of life in Great Expectations.

Pip, whose parents died when he was a child, used to live with his sister and her husband, in a small village. He encounters a runaway convict when, one day, he was sitting next to the graves of his parents in the graveyard. Obeying his commands Pip brought him food and an iron file, from the forge of his brother-in-law. The same man later turned into an anonymous benefactor of Pip to turn him into a gentleman. Pip was shocked to acknowledge his sponsor; however, he finds his love for that horrible man after discovering him as the father of the girl he loved while interpreting the entangled relationships among the weirdest people he came across in his life. Although he wanted to send him to a safe place, he didn't succeed and the man died of injury invoked illness. Pip, fully grown up by now, loses everything except the hope to be well off again and everyone except Mr. Joe, his dear brother-in-law, and Herbert, his best friend whose firm he joined to work hard and reap its best results.

Pip is a young hero of the novel while Mr. and Mrs. Joe Gargery his only relatives. Joe was a blacksmith and worked in his own forge beside his house. Pip would have been apprenticed to him hadn't his fortune intervened. He was visiting Miss Havisham – an immensely rich and grim lady – regularly then and he had believed that she was his benefactor who had Great Expectations for him. However, it was Abel Magwitch, also called Provis to conceal his real identity, who had financed him for his life of gentleman.

Great Expectations is part of Dicken’s second phase of writings, where he has returned to the theme of a youth’s discovery of the realities of life. He has cleverly weaved the social relationships among the characters whom we happen to think as unrelated to one another while reading the story. It is only towards the end that we succeed in discovering the relation among these characters.

In conclusion, Great Expectations is a worth reading novel especially for those who want to plunge into the world of imagination as well as those who love mystery. You will be overwhelmed with pleasure while reading this book.


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