Title: Martin Chuzzlewit
Author: Charles Dickens
Other works by author: The Pickwick Papers
The Adventures of Oliver Twist
The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby
Old Curiosity Shop
Barnaby Rudge: A Tale of the Riots of ‘Eighty’
The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit
Dombey and Son
Hard Times: For These Times
A Tale of Two Cities
Our Mutual Friend
Several Christmas Novellas (including A Christmas Carol)
Several Short Stories
The Mystery of Edwin Drood – unfinished
For a complete list with the shorter stories see Charles Dickens Wikipedia biography here.
My Rating: 5 of 5
Summary: The greed of his family has led wealthy old Martin Chuzzlewit to become suspicious and misanthropic, leaving his grandson and namesake to make his own way in the world. And so young Martin sets out from the Wiltshire home of his supposed champion, the scheming architect Pecksniff, to seek his fortune in America.
My thoughts: This is one of Dickens lesser known works and it is one of my favorites. The story deals mostly with selfishness and greed and how it can effect those around you. It leads to bad things such as estrangement, murder, and suicide. It also shows how certain circumstances and people can teach and grow you.
As with most of Dickens works he does use some gritty issues from the time to convey his story but nothing terrible.
It was written not long after his first visit to America which was not long before the Civil War so he does have some… interesting perceptions of Americans that come out in a portion of the book. In the postscript, however, he tells that he visited America again under much more favorable circumstances and no longer felt the way he did when writing the book.