John Harder's Reviews > The Old Curiosity Shop

The Old Curiosity Shop by Charles Dickens
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Mar 20, 2012

it was ok
Read in March, 2012

Dickens is never afraid of using three words when one would suffice, but he usually handles his verbosity gracefully. Grace or no, a red pen and a paring knife would have done this tale some good. Though I concede there are memorable characters in this story, there really is no story, rather several stories (or perhaps more to the point -- characters) running in a parallel fashion with no real direction and minimal interaction.

There is Little Nell and her Grandfather. They suffer like a Solzhenitsyn – their job is to live a life of Job, we pity them but their fortitude begins to wear a bit thin.

Secondly arises Daniel Quilp, an evil money lender. He is undoubtedly the most interesting character. For variety, I have decided we need more evil people. Unfortunately the author seems to equate Quilp’s nasty nature with his short stature. I am 5’6” and deeply offended.

Kip a youthful sprite is a devotee of Little Nell and the picture of goodness almost to the level of Nell herself – therefore not likely to be found in nature. I decided to kill off this character around page 400 – I threw him down a well. When he would occasionally crawl out and appear around page margins, I stepped on his fingers and he fell back in.

And finely we have Dick Swiveller. He is lovable rouge with a good heart. He is worth keeping in a dry area.

There are wonderful snippets in The Old Curiosity Shop but it is not one of my favorites from this master.

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The Old Curiosity Shop.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.