A Tale Of Two Cities

A Tale Of Two Cities

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After eighteen years as a political prisoner in the Bastille, the aging Doctor Manette is finally released and reunited with his daughter in England. There the lives of two very different men, Charles Darnay, and exiled French aristocrat, and Sydney Carton, a disreputable but brilliant English lawyer, become enmeshed through their love for Lucie Manette. From the tranquil roads of London, they are drawn against their will to the vengeful, bloodstained streets of Paris at the height of the Reign of Terror, and they soon fall under the lethal shadow of La Guillotine.
Publisher: ** E-Book // Click on DOWNLOAD link to place holds
ISBN: 9781400126361
Branch Call Number: EBOOK AUDIO
Alternative Title: OverDrive


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Feb 23, 2014

I found this book enjoyable though not gripping. And having listened to the audio book, I regret that I may have missed many of the literary elements.

Beth24 Dec 12, 2012

I completely agree with jwhite412. I have loved every Dickens novel I've ever read until this one. It did indeed feel like a sketchy parody of a Dickens novel with no characters fully realized.

jwhite412 Dec 15, 2011

Wow. I have found a Dickens’ novel that I DON'T LOVE; and it is one of his most frequently touted novels, too. My gut reaction to Tale is this: the novel felt like a draft of a Dickens’ novel that he never got back around to fleshing out. The characters were atypically sketchy – the most engaging by far being the minor characters of the rusty-fingered messenger Mr. Cruncher, the brave servant Miss Pross, and the evil-intended Madam DeFarge with her ubiquitous knitting. The protagonists are flat and lifeless. Most disappointingly, I felt cheated by the end. The doppelganger set-up was apparent to any intelligent reader from the beginning of the book, so the interest was in how it would play out - and what the reactions of the various characters would BE to Carton’s sacrifice. So there I was, on the edge of my seat in the last chapter… will Miss Pross get cleanly away? Do Lucie and Dr. Manette KNOW about the switch while they are yet fleeing the city, or as Carton planned it, do they still think the unconscious man is Carton himself? What will their reaction be when they learn of his selfless act? Does Dr. Manette ever recover his senses, or does he remain in mental darkness for the rest of his days? We don’t know. The book just ends. Food for thought: does the title stand for the two cities of Paris and London (which is barely visited in the text), or the two figurative cities of the Paris BEFORE and the Paris AFTER the revolution? Themes to note: 1775 on forward, the misery of the peasants, the cruelty of the ruling class, the French Revolution, the horrific indifference of La Guillotine (the goal of one small town being “60 heads a day” leading to random false accusations just to meet that goal), false imprisonment, hidden papers found in prison later condemning a man, Doppleganger, Voluntary sacrifice of self for another.


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