Dickens set his final full-scale masterpiece in 1860s London, creating dozens of memorable characters. All the themes that engaged him as a mature writer are featured here: love and hate, wealth and poverty, honesty and duplicity, and the formation and reformation of identity.
Publisher: Orion Publishing Co
Born in Portsmouth on 7 February 1812 on Old Commercial Road, Charles Dickens was a well-known personality and his novels proved immensely popular during his lifetime. His first full novel, The Pickwick Papers, brought him immediate fame, and this success continued throughout his career.
His father, inspiration for the character of Mr Micawber in David Copperfield, was imprisoned for bad debt and all his family, apart from Charles himself, were sent to Marshalsea prison for his father's crimes. Forced to leave school at the age of 12 for a job in a factory, Dickens based several of his characters on his experiences. He worked 10 hour days at Warren's Blacking Warehouse on Hungerford Stairs, pasting labels onto blacking. The strenuous - and often cruel - work conditions for children made a deep impression on Dickens, and later influenced his fiction and essays.