The Pickwick Papers

  • by Charles Dickens
  • Narrated by Simon Prebble
  • 30 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club (commonly known as The Pickwick Papers) is the first novel by Charles Dickens. The book became the first real publishing phenomenon, with bootleg copies, theatrical performances, Sam Weller joke books and other merchandise.
Written for publication as a serial, The Pickwick Papers is a sequence of loosely-related adventures. The novel's main character, Mr. Samuel Pickwick, Esquire, is a kind and wealthy old gentleman, and the founder and perpetual president of the Pickwick Club. To extend his researches into the quaint and curious phenomena of life, he suggests that he and three other "Pickwickians" (Mr. Nathaniel Winkle, Mr. Augustus Snodgrass, and Mr. Tracy Tupman) should make journeys to remote places from London and report on their findings to the members of the club. Their travels throughout the English countryside provide the chief theme of the novel.
Its main literary value and appeal is formed by its numerous memorable characters. Each character in The Pickwick Papers, as in many other Dickens novels, is drawn comically, often with exaggerated personalities. Alfred Jingle provides an aura of comic villainy. His misadventures repeatedly land the Pickwickians in trouble. These include Jingle's elopement with the spinster, Aunt Rachael of Dingley Dell manor, misadventures with Dr. Slammer, and others.

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What the Critics Say

This novel, Dickens's first, made him famous and was perhaps the world's first real publishing phenomenon, inspiring bootleg copies, theatrical performances, and merchandise based on the popular characters.
"[T]he great example of everything that made Dickens great....[a] supreme masterpiece." (G. K. Chesterton)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A quite brilliant performance

I feel inadequately qualified to offer any critique on any of the writings of England's greatest novelist. The fact that they can be read &/or listened to and thoroughly enjoyed over 150 years after they were written is testimony itself to the quality of the work.
I must, however, pay tribute in this instance to quite brilliant narration by Simon Prebble.
It was truly superb throughout.
His diction & pronunciation is faultless and his impressive range of accents for the various characters who appear in this wonderful collection of tales was so brilliantly done that it there is never any confusion over who said what & to whom!
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- Peter

Pickwick Papers

It was a very enjoyable listen. I have always intended to read dickens but have been put off by the length of the main novels and have only read some of the short stories. I'm very pleased that I am now able to listen to the books in unabridged version because not only are the stories good but I can also hear the beauty of Charles Dickens prose.i especially like the fact that all the loose ends were tied up in the last chapter.(something which I don't remember from the various adaptations I have heard).
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- Linda

Book Details

  • Release Date: 21-12-2009
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.