Kate's Queen City Notes

Blundering through Cincinnati, laughing all the way

100 books by 40: BLEAK HOUSE

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Book: Bleak House
Author: Charles Dickens
Published: 1853

Bleak is an accurate description of how I felt when I started this book. The gray Cincinnati winter seems the most suitable companion for slogging through this enormous book. I was cheered by the fact that this is the last Charles Dickens book in my list. All of my earlier struggles with The Bronte Sisters and Jane Austen have paid out in how quickly I jumped back into Dickens.

Of the many things to object to with this book, the obsession with 1800’s British legal system was most irritating. Long passages are devoted to the courts. I skimmed over those passages without guilt.

Fortune has put this book toward the end of my list. There are twenty books standing between me and my goal of finishing The BBC’s 100 Best Books list. The momentum of eighty books down and twenty to go carried me to the end of this book.

The sheer number of side characters in this book is overwhelming. I can’t say that the subplots add that much to the book. Actually, scratch that. I can’t say anything about the book added that much to my life. Great Expectations and David Copperfield deserved to be on this list. Bleak House, not so much. If you want to get into Dickens, steer clear of this one.

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