‘The Old Curiosity Shop’ is one of Charles Dickens’ most beloved novels about a poor orphan girl, Nell, and her caring grandfather. In an attempt to improve Nell’s life, her grandfather accepts a loan from the cruel and conniving landlord, Quilp, and begins gambling but this only worsens their fortune. After issues with the police, Nell and her grandfather set out on a grand adventure and meet many of Dickens’ most memorable characters as Nell’s health deteriorates. ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’ is an incredible drama involving love, betrayal, and death that blends the fantastical nature of Nell’s journey with Dickens’ realistic criticism of living conditions in Victorian slums. The story caused mania at the time as Little Nell captured the hearts of readers around the globe including Queen Victoria. Nell and her grandfather have captivated audiences for generations in this timeless story that is equally as heart-warming as it is heart-breaking, and it is recommended for readers of all ages.
Charles Dickens (1812-1870) was a widely popular English author and social critic. Among his most famous novels are ‘Oliver Twist’, ‘A Christmas Carol’, and ‘Great Expectations’. Dickens is best known for his depictions of poor Victorian living conditions and his unforgettable characters, some compassionate and others grotesquely malicious. Dickens’ timeless tales are still as celebrated today as when they were written, and his literary style is so influential that the term Dickensian was coined to describe the literature he inspired. Many of Dickens’ novels have been adapted for movies and television, including the Academy Award-winning musical ‘Oliver’.