Parents' Guide to

David Copperfield

By Barbara Schultz, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Dickens' coming-of-age epic is a timeless treasure.

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This classic coming-of-age tale is a delightfully entertaining, important work that's well worth its thousand-plus pages. Tenderhearted David Copperfield was one of Charles Dickens' own favorite characters, and no wonder. He represents Dickens himself to some extent, and he's full of innocence and goodness -- qualities that make him lovable, and easy prey to some degree. This lengthy novel is full of wonderfully realized characters, from eccentric Betsey Trottwood and Mr. Dick to the steadfast Peggottys to the mean-spirited Murdstones and more. It has some surprisingly modern qualities, as well, despite its vintage (1850). Betsey Trottwood lives an unusual, independent life for a woman of her time. Dickens also reveals the failings of "firmness" in child rearing and education, and he emphasizes the joys of marriage when the couple are true partners in their life and work. HIs relevant point of view speaks to the timelessness of David Copperfield.

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