The Book Club| Great Expectations

"It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light and winter in the cold"

Great Expectations - 3/5

This is the first Charles Dickens book I have read since reading A Christmas Carol for my GCSEs. The story follows Pip who is both the main character and the narrator making him influential in the readers opinion of events as he becomes acquainted with Miss Havisham, and the resulting timeline. Because the narration is done with hindsight there are almost two Pips for the reader to understand. When reading the book I loved the fact that Pip has two very contrasting personality traits, on the one hand he aims to improve himself both intellectually and in terms of social status. But on the other hand at heart he is generous and sympathetic. This two contrasting characteristics made it hard
for me to decide whether I like him as a person or not.

One of the most difficult things I found about reading this books was how slow the plot progressed, at times I would get frustrated with the excess descriptive details. I also became irritated with the contrasting female characters of Miss Havisham, Mrs Joe, and Estella, however I think this might have the reaction Dickens was hoping for, as he tries to make a point about how happiness and well-being are separate from social class. To me Dickens represents the dramatic social change that occurred throughout the Victorian Era.

Overall Great Expectations taught me a lot about social class, love and how people can have two very opposing characteristics because of the events that have shaped their opinions.

Here is one of my favourite quotes from the book:

"I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be. I loved her none the less because I knew it, and it had no more influence in restraining me, than if I had devoutly believed her to be human perfection" 

XO, Miriam

Related Articles


Post a Comment