Nicholas Nickleby

Nicholas Nickleby

Book - 1993
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Nicholas Nickleby, with its episodes of chicanery in finance and education, and the dramatic intensity with which it tells the story of its openhearted young protagonist and its frightening villain, the magnificently rendered Ralph Nickleby, represents Dickens at his clear-eyed, indignant, and mesmerizing best. When Nicholas Nickleby is left penniless by the death of his father, he appeals to his Uncle Ralph to help him and his mother and sister. But Ralph conceives a violent hatred of the young man, and his schemes of persecution haunt Nicholas through a series of picaresque adventures, including a job as a tutor at a horrific school for unwanted boys run by the cruel Wackford Squeers and a stint as a member of the eccentric Crummles family theater troupe. Without shying away from the grimmer aspects of the world Nicholas encounters on his path to eventual happiness, the story remains one of Dickens's most high-spirited and exuberant.
Publisher: New York : Knopf : Random House, c1993
ISBN: 9780679423072
Characteristics: lvii, 843 p. : ill. ; 22 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

" ' Part of Dickens' delight in the theatre's conventions springs from the ease with which they allow an individual to lay aside a given identity and assume another. Looking around backstage just before the Highland drama commences, Nicholas is amazed to discover everyone "so much changed that he scarcely knew them. False hair, false colour, false calves, false muscles--they had become different beings.'.....the acceptance of Smike by the troupe reflects its willingness to tolerate, indeed celebrate, all forms of eccentricity." If you think you might enjoy an author with a history in the theatre, and you are appalled by the simple numbers of words which Dickens employs to create his fiction (and she is more contemporary), i recommend Ms. Ngaio Marsh.

Jan 19, 2018

One must remember that this was written in the 19th century and can be a bit difficult to read, with extremely long and detailed descriptions of location, thought and action not found in today's works. Like many of Dicken's novels, the plot is convoluted and chronicles the tale of a young person and his family who have fallen on hard times and the people who both help and hinder their well being. Highly recommended for those who enjoy these old classics or just the patient reader who enjoys a good story.

Dec 14, 2014

Humor, drama, pathos, with a boatload of intriguing characters. Entertaining throughout.


My favorite Dicken novel.

Mar 30, 2012

I really don't like Victorian lit, but his writing has invaded my head, and I find myself thinking of the characters and wanting to find out what has become of them at odd moments of my day. Well done, Charles Dickens.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at CALS

To Top