IoS paperback review: Charles Dickens: A Life, By Claire Tomalin
Sunday 09 December 2012
In his centenary year, Dickens was brought to brilliant life by Claire Tomalin in this book.
Tomalin has been praised for her sensitive exploration of Dickens’s affair with the young actress Ellen “Nelly” Ternan, but there is so much more to discover in this rich, capacious biography. I especially enjoyed the raucous account of Dickens’s journey to North America in 1848, where he was greeted with the fervour nowadays associated with pop stars (5,000 New Yorkers applied for tickets to an extravagant welcoming party known simply as “Boz Ball”). Throughout the book, Tomalin treats her subject with just the right mixture of sympathy and detachment: one emerges with a fuller picture of the writer as a flawed and fleshy mortal, but also with an undiminished sense of his genius.
Broadcaster unveils Christmas scheduleTV
Jeff Fletcher found fame in 1990s
'At times I thought he was me'film
Review: One Direction, Fourmusic
Review: The World of Ice and Firebooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
- 2 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 3 Black Friday 2014: Opening hours for John Lewis, Asda, PC World, GAME and Argos
- 4 Bill Cosby: Isn’t it obvious why his accusers have stayed silent up until now?
- 5 Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
Black Mirror Christmas special: Jon Hamm episode will see people 'blocked' in real life, not just on Facebook
Doctor Who Christmas Special 2014: Ominous 'Last Christmas' title could signal Jenna Coleman's departure
Zoella: YouTube sensation Zoe Sugg's debut novel expected to become overnight bestseller
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs
Naked free runner captured in breathtaking photographs above London's streets
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police