First things first, I was not able to reach chapter eleven. I made it up to chapter 4.
I struggled with deciding to continue this book just to finally get through it or just dnf it. I decided to dnf it. Here are my reasons:
- All the characters are bland.I have read David Copperfield and Oliver Twist so I expect a vast amount of characterization in the characters. I expect that if anyone should get pages upon pages of back story it should at least be the main character. That did not happen however. Esther got maybe a chapter on a bit of her lifet story and that is it. This chapter was not a chapter that sold her character to me.Esther reminded me of Jane Eyre and a bit of David Copperfield. Except Jane and David had personalities. I heard that Charles Dickens based Esther off of Jane Eyre, he felt that Jane Eyre was not thankful enough. Looking at this the way the character is structured Esthers personality makes sense. He just took all the personality and what makes Jane, Jane Eyre out. Readers get to see Janes struggles and understand her strife. Esther we just get a chapter and her personality is so thin that I honestly don’t see it. I kept hearing that Charles Dickens cannot write women characters and I had not experienced it so I did not believe it. I can really see it with this book. It really makes me angry because he gave so much to his other characters but did not give anything to hold onto to this one. I think Charlotte Bronte herself sums up my issues with Esther “…weak and twaddling ; amiable nature is caricatured, not faithfully rendered…” If his characters from Bleak House were just problematic that would have been possibly okay but they have the audacity to be boring as well, no.
- The Story is bland too. I honestly do not know what is exactly going on but I do not care that much.
- My resolve not to finish books that I know I will not enjoy. I kind of struggled a bit with deciding to let this book go. I felt that because he was one of my favorite authors I needed to get through this book. That reading through this book like a good soldier was getting things done. Then when that thought crossed my mind it seemed like I was doing a chore. I thought at one point, if this was any other author I would dnf and never read the authors books again. I cannot in good conscience allow myself to finish a book that I do not like that is this big just because the author is one of my favorite authors. I could be reading any other books that is interesting and makes me excited to read it. I could be reading Les Miserables or one of the other 20+ classic books I have. I have too many books left to read that I own and don’t own to waste on this book. It is too much to read 900+ pages just to give it a don’t like.
It seriously bothers me that so many people are going to read this listening to how so many count this as a favorite, not like it and most likely never read a Charles Dickens ever again. This is not Charles Dickens best by far. Bleak House is not my last novel by Charles Dickens definitely. I just am hoping this is not one of those trends were the rest of his books suck too.