Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) died more than 150 years ago and yet the characters he created in his novels remain some of the most memorable and vivid in English literature. His characters “step out of the novel and roam the world,” as Dickens scholar Jenny Hartley put it in her Five Books interview. She spoke to us about Dickens’s place in English literature as well as his works’ relationship with Victorian society and his own life. In addition to a biography of Dickens, she recommended two novels, his letters and some criticism.

At Christmas, many of us still turn to some version of Dickens’s A Christmas Carol to reflect on the holiday’s significance. Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, a professor of English literature at Oxford, spoke to us about the Dickens and Christmas phenomenon and how it was not just about A Christmas Carol, but also his other writings.

Below you’ll find all the times Dickens’s novels have been recommended in Five Books interviews, the range of topics testament to his enduring legacy.

Books by Charles Dickens

Interviews where books by Charles Dickens were recommended

Jeffrey Archer on Bestsellers

The best books are the ones that tell great stories, says bestselling author and former British politician Jeffrey Archer. Here, he shares some of his favourites, popular novels that went down well with readers but are sometimes still looked down on by the literary establishment.

The best books on Schoolmasters in Fiction, recommended by David Hargreaves

Teachers play an important role in our educational and emotional development. But we have a complex relationship with them: one marked by firm boundaries and an unequal power dynamic. Here, novelist and former schoolmaster David Hargreaves discusses five classic works of fiction that portray teachers walking this line with varying degrees of success.

The Scariest Books for Kids, recommended by Jack Meggitt-Phillips

Scary children’s books give kids the pleasure of immersing themselves in an exciting page-turner, and are an excellent way to get reluctant readers to read novels. As long as you pay attention to individual children’s sensibilities, it shouldn’t be hard to find books that give them thrills rather than nightmares. Children’s author Jack Meggitt-Phillips talks us through his favourite scary books for kids.

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