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Death and Mr. Pickwick    by Stephen Jarvis order for
Death and Mr. Pickwick
by Stephen Jarvis
Order:  USA  Can
Picador, 2016 (2015)
Hardcover, Softcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

I had never read anything about the personal or professional life of Charles Dickens. Death and Mr. Pickwick presents Dickens as I have never pictured him.

This novel by Stephen Jarvis delves into the life of Dickens and his dealings with Robert Seymour who was an illustrator of amazing skills. I won't give you a synopsis of this 802 page book. That would be a book in itself. Indulge yourself and discover Boz's story - Boz being Charles Dickens' pen name.

This book is a masterpiece, that takes a step back to London in the mid 1800s. Seymour's magical etchings caught the eye of the literary world and Boz was encouraged to write stories to match the artwork. Boz, of course, as we all know, became famous worldwide. Seymour not so well known.

Death and Mr. Pickwick will delight, as well as educate, the reader. Any period in history is bound to be interesting. But this is so much more than that. Death and Mr. Pickwick is written in such depth it is easy to imagine oneself a very real part of that era and Dicken's world.

I know that I cannot do justice to this fascinating and captivating back story of one of my most favorite authors. When I was a young girl, I fell and broke my elbow. While waiting hours for help, my mother read to me from Dickens. I realized later that listening to those wonderful words captured my attention and made the pain much less!

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