I started working my way through the unabridged audiobook of Great Expectations (narrated by Frank Muller), oh I don’t know, let’s say two weeks ago. It’s taken me that long to get to Chapter 15 and I’m still not quite sure I understand what the hell is going on. Granted, this could be because I listen to it while I’m driving and maybe don’t give the old classic my undivided attention.
So far I’ve gathered that there’s a young boy of an undetermined age (I can’t figure out if he’s 4 or 21), Pip, who has a horrid and abusive sister, spineless father/brother-in-law, and the coolest character by far is Miss Havisham.
Miss H is awesome and hilarious. A big bonus is that she pays people to hang out with her: “Thanks for the card game and taking that verbal abuse with a smile, Pip – here’s a bucket full of money” (okay, I’m paraphrasing). I doubt that Dickens intended her to be the comedic relief of this particular book, but I must admit that I smile a bit whenever she enters the scene. She reminds me of a certain spirited woman I know, which makes the character of Miss H all the more endearing to me.
I think I’m supposed to be paying more attention to the part of the story which involves the escaped convicts that Pip helped out, but so far I am un-enthralled.
Initial thoughts: I have a hard time with Dickens. I fought through A Christmas Carol when I read it, and I dragged my feet through Tale of Two Cities as well. That being said, at the end of the day I was really happy I read ToTC – making the score 1-1 for ol’ Charlie. I don’t know if ToTC won me over because of my love of the French Revolution, or if Dickens pulled it off. I guess Great Expectations will settle the tie.
**SIDE BAR: just found out that Helena Bohnam Carter played Miss H. in a 2012 making of Great Expectations. I have to see this. +1,000,000,000 points**
February 28th: the best thing about this book right now is that it has an ending (made it to Ch. 24)