It was my rule to post a quote per week, and I broke it! My deepest and sincerest apologies. Two extra will be posted this week in order to catch up.
“It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to that I have ever known.” – A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
Seconded only to Phantom of the Opera, A Tale of Two Cities is my favorite classic! But how can I perfectly explain why I love it so? In a way, I believe it differs from Dicken’s other novels. Not in the aspect of emotion (it certainly has lots of that!) but more in plot. Don’t get me wrong, it’s beautifully deep and complex like all his others, yet there’s something different. It’s not centered on a homeless vagrant. It doesn’t take place on filthy streets nor can you hear mills billow in the distance. Instead, it’s centered on an aging doctor and his daughter who, after some previous hardships, settle down in London. (If you think this sounds boring and tedious, you’d be right…if the plot stopped there.)The factory’s whistle you do not hear, but the footsteps of angry Parisians you do. As the family lives normal lives, echos of the French Revolution knock on their door. The bloodshed is easily ignored until it invades their existence. Honey baby, it just became personal! Let me ask you this: what happens when you mix a wealthy English family with angry French commoners? A little bit of reconnaissance? A little bit of scheming? Certainly a lot of Madame Guillotine. This isn’t Dickens usual “Little Orphan Annie” plot. This is extreme sacrifice, espionage, and thrill!
If you’ve hated Dicken’s works before, let me recommend to you this work. You might enjoy it (or at least tolerate it better) than his other novels.