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A Tale of Two Cities (Barnes & Noble Classics) [Paperback]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   464
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.25" Width: 4" Height: 6.5"
Weight:   0.58 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 1, 2003
Publisher   Barnes & Noble Classics
ISBN  1593080557  
EAN  9781593080556  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
"A Tale of Two Cities," by Charles Dickens, is part of the ""Barnes & Noble Classics" "series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of "Barnes & Noble Classics": New introductions commissioned from today's top writers and scholars Biographies of the authors Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events Footnotes and endnotes Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work Comments by other famous authors Study questions to challenge the reader's viewpoints and expectations Bibliographies for further reading Indices & Glossaries, when appropriateAll editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. "Barnes & Noble Classics "pulls together a constellation of influences-biographical, historical, and literary-to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works. "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . ." With these famous words, Charles Dickens plunges the reader into one of history's most explosive eras-the French Revolution. From the storming of the Bastille to the relentless drop of the guillotine, Dickens vividly captures the terror and upheaval of that tumultuous period. At the center is the novel's hero, Sydney Carton, a lazy, alcoholic attorney who, inspired by a woman, makes the supreme sacrifice on the bloodstained streets of Paris.
One of Dickens's most exciting novels, "A Tale of TwoCities" is a stirring classic of love, revenge, and resurrection.
Gillen D'Arcy Wood received his Ph.D in English from Columbia University in 2000 and is currently an assistant professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He is the author of "The Shock of the Real: Romanticism and Visual Culture, 1760-1860,"

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More About Charles Dickens & Gillen D'Arcy Wood

Charles Dickens Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in Landport, Portsea, England. He died in Kent on June 9, 1870. The second of eight children of a family continually plagued by debt, the young Dickens came to know not only hunger and privation, but also the horror of the infamous debtors' prison and the evils of child labor. A turn of fortune in the shape of a legacy brought release from the nightmare of prison and "slave" factories and afforded Dickens the opportunity of two years' formal schooling at Wellington House Academy. He worked as an attorney's clerk and newspaper reporter until his Sketches by Boz (1836) and The Pickwick Papers (1837) brought him the amazing and instant success that was to be his for the remainder of his life. In later years, the pressure of serial writing, editorial duties, lectures, and social commitments led to his separation from Catherine Hogarth after twenty-three years of marriage. It also hastened his death at the age of fifty-eight, when he was characteristically engaged in a multitude of work.

David Pascoe is Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Glasgow. He has also edited Thackeray's The Newcomers for Penguin Classics.

Charles Dickens was born in 1812 and died in 1870.

Charles Dickens has published or released items in the following series...

  1. Collins Classics
  2. Dover Holiday Coloring Book
  3. Penguin Classics

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Paging Ronald Colman-2.  May 25, 2006
"The book is better than the movie", folks will say. Usually, that sentiment is correct, but there are exceptions. TTC is one. Many of us know the basic plot from high school, about the brave man that takes another guy's place on the guillotine. There is a wonderful storyline here but book and movie follow two very different paths. The 1935 MGM classic is more direct than the Charles Dickens opus. Ronald Colman carried the two hour movie, which considerably condensed the written work. And that is the heart of the matter. Dickens takes too many pages-and too many chapters (all in the flowery language of the era) to spin his tale. In fact, this reader would have been hard pressed to follow the plot without the benefit of having seen the screen version. There is no doubt Dickens is a great author, but his style can also grate the less than (very!) patient reader. By pleasant coincidence, this reviewer can offer one other example of screen superiority. That would be "The Prisoner of Zenda", which also starred Mr. Colman- with a wonderful supporting cast including Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Madleine Carroll, David Niven and C. Aubrey Smith. There is a positive aspect to the Gillen D"Arcy Wood version of TTC: The introduction and footnotes are superior. This reviewer actually read and enjoyed them, but doing so adds to the time investment of perusing the printed word. This observer concluded his review of the movie by stating it was so good he was buying the book. The verdict is in: For entertainment appeal, the 1935 MGM movie is clearly superior.
A Tale of Two Cities, Beyond the surface  Apr 11, 2006
In Charles Dickens' novel, A Tale of Two Cities, he makes it clear as to what his views are of the revolution with his ample descriptions of the crowds of revolutionaries, but what readers may fail to see is how he incorporates the revolution into each of his characters. True, some of the crowd's actions were savage and brutal, but given the period, I would say that Dickens gives a rather balanced and insightful perspective from both sides of the revolution. The first and most notable being that of the disgruntled citizen willing to participate in a governmental reform, and the other the pompous rich upper class, or the aristocrats, who wish to keep their corrupt form of politics. In this novel Charles Dickens shows his audience that everything has a purpose and whether they have come to a realization of that purpose or not, they are willing to sacrifice their lives for that purpose.
Dickens' use of arguments on both sides of the revolution are acted upon two chief characters, the first and foremost being the mobs of revolutionaries, who dedicate themselves and bleed for their idea that their blinded by the rashness of their actions. These people are also so fickle in their loyalty that they will turn on anyone who opposes their ideas. When the revolutionaries gain power in Book the Third, there now exists such violence and madness displayed by them, that I see them more as beasts then people. Dickens says, "False eyebrows an false moustaches were stuck upon them, and their hideous countenances were all bloody and sweaty, and all awry with howling, and all staring and glaring with beastly excitement and want of sleep."(3.259) This quote symbolizing two aspects in my opinion, the amount of bloodshed they are willing to sacrifice for their ideals and their madness in accomplishing their task. The second being that character of Charles Darnay, a man so doomed by his family's actions that his innocence represents that which may have lain underneath the foul aristocracy. Darnay renounces his family status and wealth just so he can prove that he was no friend of the old government. Nevertheless, through the crowd's rashness Darnay ends up getting the short side of the stick, being arrested twice and be doomed to the guillotine. Darnay may also represent the hopelessness of any uncorrupted soul of the former government, and Dickens portrays him well enough to get his point across.
Dickens uses a character's sacrifice to explain that everything has a purpose in life. When Dr. Manette is "recalled to life"(1. 8), he is given a new purpose to live by Dickens, the purpose to fight for both his sanity and to help Darnay. Manette's character is an intelligent one, encompassing the aspects of a citizen who doesn't much care for the way things are done, but when it comes to his family, he will fight until every breath in his body is gone. Sydney Carton is a dynamic character in this novel because he recognizes his purpose and acts on this recognization to save the lives of those whom he cares about. Each character is able to recognize their purpose regardless of which side of the revolution they are on and because of it, as a reader, I can see their though processes in their actions.
I believe this novel adequately portrays the revolution from both perspectives and tracts its movement through certain characters in this novel. Dickens novel may have been confusing and full of unneeded dialogue at a first glance, but as I looked deeper I saw the true meaning he was trying to get across. Sacrifice, for their own ideals, that's what he wanted people to see, how to stay on the right path in accomplishing their goals.
Well Documented Edition   Nov 2, 2005
I read this edition with a student I am tutoring. The introduction by Gillen D'arcy Wood is well written and helpful. The footnotes and endnotes provide just the right amount of information and background to the story. This is a superb student edition of a classic tale.

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