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A Tale of Two Cities (Dover Thrift Editions) [Unabridged] [Paperback]

by Charles Dickens
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 31, 1998 0486406512 978-0486406510 Unabridged
Against the backdrop of the French Revolution, Dickens unfolds a masterpiece of drama, adventure, and courage featuring Charles Darnay, a man falsely accused of treason. He bears an uncanny resemblance to the dissolute, yet noble Sydney Carton — a coincidence that saves Darnay from certain doom more than once. Brilliantly plotted, the novel culminates in a daring prison escape in the shadow of the guillotine.

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A Tale of Two Cities (Dover Thrift Editions) + Great Expectations (Dover Thrift Editions) + Oliver Twist (Dover Thrift Editions)
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Product Details

  • Series: Dover Thrift Editions
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications; Unabridged edition (December 31, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486406512
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486406510
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,062 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
30 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome! September 24, 2000
I had a bad experience with Dickens. 2 years ago I tried reading Oliver Twist, after seeing the Disney movie, but after going through 3 chapters that took up 40 pages each - but consisted of only 2 paragraphs each, just for Oliver to be born and named, I gave up. Now I'm in 8th grade and as a language arts assignment, we were to read a Dickens novel. It was either A Tale of Two Cities or Great Expectations. I saw the Wishbone summary of A Tale of Two Cities and thought it had a nice plot but was dreading going through Dickens's lllooooonnnggg drones.
This time however, Dickens secured my interest with the ideal beginning of "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . ." I was immediately drawn into the story of mystery and splendor. The characters didn't suddenly multiply like they did before and I got to understand each and every one - from pretty Lucie Manette to the harsh Monseigneur the Marquis.
Dickens's drifting speeches improved as well: turning out to be quite dramatic and interesting. Maybe the book could have been a lot shorter - but it gives you something to think on. And it's definitely better than just having an author say, "okay, this is the story and that's the end." Instead, he gives you a suspensful novel that you are never bored with. You have to carefully follow the story and see how the threads tie together in the end.
. . . Prepare to be amazed!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story, great price September 30, 2006
"A Tale of Two Cities" is one of Charles Dickens' greatest and darkest novels. Set in the final quarter of the 18th century, Dickens presents to us the brutality that led to the anarchy of the French Revolution, as seen by Britons and by the Revolutionaries themselves.

Today's readers may seem put off by the overwhelming amount of coincidences that occur in the book, but no one I know of thinks it made the story suffer. I have taught "A Tale of Two Cities" many times and not one student had a problem with this. In fact, very few students disliked the book.

Which brings me to another point: the Dover Thrift Editions are great money-savers. For two and half books, they get a well-bound and printed, quality paperback that won't hurt their already financially-strapped wallets.

Rocco Dormarunno

College of New Rochelle
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A story to remember forever! June 26, 2012
"Recalled to life," is the strange message that Mr. Jerry Lorry of Tellson's Bank gives to the messenger on horseback waiting in the dark. "Recalled to life" is the running theme of the book, that each of its characters encounter. Originally, the message was stated for the case of Dr. Manette, a man hidden in the deep folds of the Bastille for 18 long years---his relatives never cognizant of his imprisonment, and thus presumed him dead many years ago. When Lucie, his daughter & only living shred of a family, discovers that he is alive at an innkeeper's lodgings in Paris, she immediately attempts to rescue him from his current horrible state she then finds him in.

Fast forward a little bit through the story, and the phrase "Recalled to life" fits yet again into a young man's life, a friend of the Manette's, whose name is Charles Darnay and has to endure his own hardship. The phrase is not applied to his situation, but works just the same. His fate includes being sent to the Guillotine, the main execution process used during the French Revolution. As trial after trial unfurls, what will be left of these men when it is all said and done?

This story begins in "the year of Our Lord one thousand seven hundred and seventy-five"--a few years prior to the beginning of the French Revolution. As the story progresses, the precautions and conflicts of the French citizens lead up to the full revolution, including the final storming of the Bastille and afterwards.

My personal thoughts:
I'd been wanting to read "A Tale of Two Cities" for a while, and I'm so glad that I did. The story had its peaks, which interested me greatly as I read each chapter.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes boring, but worth it. September 7, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The beginning was great but the ending was AMAZING. So much suspense, and the outcome really was unpredictable. Most of the characters were really well drawn. And Dickens is always good at getting the reader into his setting, which in this case was creepy and fascinating. He also does an awesome job of good vs. evil in all his books, and this was no exception.

The main downside was that the middle part was slow, but the ending was totally worth it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sydney Parade Carton November 29, 2012
I avoided reading this until now, having heard somewhere that it was Dickens at his least funny, and I guess that's sort of true but A Tale of Two Cities is nevertheless a stupendous bit of thick description. When I ran across the following revelation about Sydney Carton I was filled with a sense of gladness and wonder that such a character could spring so true to life on the page:

"Sadly, sadly, the sun rose; it rose upon no sadder sight than the man of good abilities and good emotions, incapable of their directed exercise, incapable of his own help and his own happiness, sensible of the blight on him, and resigning himself to let it eat him away."

As far as I'm concerned that's exactly it right there in a nutshell and who better than old Charlie to set it down so surely. I must admit I was instamatically fascinated by Mr. Stryver's blighted jackal and not just because a Carton is some kind of Box either. There's a strong strain of Eugene Wrayburn about the old chap only much more satisfyingly moreso, if that makes any sense. To me at least this fellow of no delicacy is completely and utterly credible as a human being and my reaction to the book he's so much a part of might best be summed up in a slight paraphrase of the great Denis Johnson: It felt wonderful to be alive to read it! I've gone looking for this character everywhere. Come to think of it another reason I feel decidedly drawn to Sydney Carton is that the blighter turned up as one half of a priceless comparison made by Bertie Wooster in the first installment of Wodehouse's inspired Totliegh Towers tetralogy. If that isn't a recommendation in itself I hardly know what is.

Plus anyway A Tale of Two Cities isn't all oppression, misery and tumbrils of the Revolution either coz Jerry Cruncher for one cracked me up consistently. Taken for all in all, then, I reckon that even in the realm of stone cold history Boz is the bloody bleeding business.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars read with the audio book.
I'm not much good at book reviews, but this was a great book that taught true principles. It is however a bit difficult read for someone not familiar with classic literature. Read more
Published 23 days ago by J. Rich
5.0 out of 5 stars It was the best
This is a super great classic. We all have heard at least part of the first paragraph of this story. Read more
Published 1 month ago by JAMES WETHERINGTON
5.0 out of 5 stars Correct version
It's a requirement for school with correct version. I bought use and it's in good condition as described. Thank you...
Published 1 month ago by White May
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book but...
The plot itself is amazingly well thought out. I was hooked from the first words with the setting that Dickens puts forth. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Saurav Pandey
5.0 out of 5 stars Faithful love, grimacing revenge, honor, horror, darkness, and light
Profound human love and the most repugnant savagery, horror and redemption, a heroine and a grotesque revenger, two families with dark secrets, two cities, all in the backdrop of... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Leslie Taylor
2.0 out of 5 stars bad condition
this paperback was in bad condition. It was heavily highlighted throughout the book with notes written on the pages in every chapter. Many of the pages were folded.
Published 3 months ago by Peggybenz
5.0 out of 5 stars readibg
Can never go wrong with the Classics.
Love them. Can read them over & over.
You know the story & how it ends, but it doen't matter. It's like a fine wine.
Published 4 months ago by Maddy Feldman
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic
This is classic of a series of books aimed to middle school students. Highly recommended for all ages. My kids love it!
Published 4 months ago by Tech Operation
5.0 out of 5 stars "A Tale of Two Societies in Turmoil"
Charles Dickens' "A Tale of Two Cities" has been recognized for decades as one of the classics of western literature. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Gene Pisasale
5.0 out of 5 stars "It was the best of times," It was the best of reads.
The Tale of Two Cities, written by the renowned author, Mr. Charles Dickens, was a brilliant read. While written with beautiful language that helps its readers understand the... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Slater
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Topic From this Discussion
Welcome to the A Tale of Two Cities forum
I found the end of the book to be highly moving. It was written so well that I felt I was actually witnessing the event. I'm sorry that I don't explain myself more, but to do so is to relate the ending of the book to someone who may not have read the book fully yet. But, it is the ending that... Read more
Apr 8, 2009 by WT |  See all 8 posts
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