Hi, I'm the last person on earth who hadn't read Great Expectations. And somehow I've also made it to my forties without a teacher or movie giving any of the story away. I knew it was about a poor kid who becomes rich and wants a really snooty girl, but that's it. And I only knew about the snooty girl from seeing a snippet of movie with a very modern (a.k.a. bastardized) take on the book.
I picked up the book months ago, and I've read a chapter every other night, dragging it on. Some nights I read one paragraph. That's what happens when you use up your eyes on the computer all day at work---there's no juice left in the eyeballs to continue focusing on a tiny page in the dim light while stretched out in bed at 11:58pm.
But oooooooh how I've loved this book. Certainly not a pleasant one, but so deliciously written, painted vividly in my head, and full o' people who are now real to me. Such great names likes Magwitch, Wemmick and Pumblechook...
Such ridiculous soap opera of tragedies and secret parents and twists, but still perfectly capturing real egos, nutbags, creeps, and golden friends I've encountered in my own life...
But what a bummer Dickens was ever convinced to change the ending of the book to be more pleasant. The paperback I was reading included both endings. The original ending is a bummer and perfectly appropriate and satisfying. The replacement ending is too tidy, somehow stomping on everything I just read...And so I'm going to pretend I didn't read that.
Actually I wish I could erase the whole book from my head and enjoy it all over again. I don't have a new book to get started on tonight, and I have about three more minutes of reading juice left in my eyes.
“Take a pencil and write under my name, ‘I forgive her!’”
Please, 'cause in a few minutes she'll literally be on fire, and you're gonna feel really bad that you didn't.