Young Martin's comic odyssey to the New World; the naive Tom Pinch's rite of passage from innocence to enlightenment; the smooth scheming of the arch hypocrite Pecksniff; the grotesque self-love of Mrs. Gamp; the increasingly-desperate machinations of murderous Jonas Chuzzlewit; all are portrayed with a typically Dickensian flair for unerringly accurate social satire and buoyantly extravagant characterization.
About the Author
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."