Annotations for Tale of Two Cities
Baker & Taylor
Tells the classic story of a young Englishman who gives his life during the French Revolution to save the husband of the woman he loves.
Blackwell North Amer
Set in London and Paris at the time of the French Revolution, A Tale of Two Cities (1859) sees the causes and effects of that great social upheaval from an essentially private point of view. Dickens's characters are fictional, their responses individual, their political activity minimal, but all are caught up in a web woven by their own activities and responsibilities, and all are drawn to the Paris of the Terror.
"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times."
After eighteen years as a political prisoner in the Bastille the aging Dr Manette is finally released and reunited with his daughter in England. There two very different men, Charles Darnay, an exiled French aristocrat, and Sydney Carton, a disreputable but brilliant English lawyer, become enmeshed through their love for Lucie Manette. From the tranquil lanes of London, they are all drawn against their will to the vengeful, bloodstained streets of Paris at the height of the Reign of Terror and soon fall under the lethal shadow of La Guillotine. This Penguin Classics edition uses the text as it appeared in its first serial publication in 1859 and includes the original illustrations by H. K. Browne (?Phiz'). Richard Maxwell's introduction discusses the intricate interweaving of epic drama with personal tragedy.
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