In this tale, first published serially in 1841 and 1842, Dickens follows Nell Trent, an angelic and unfailingly virtuous girl of “nearly fourteen” and her grandfather as they navigate a world populated by villains, criminals and ne’er-do-wells. The public response at the time equalled modern reactions to the Harry Potter books, the audience rapt to learn of Nell’s fate. Does she live a life of comfort, of which her grandfather dreams? Or does fate have something less noble in store for poor Nell?
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