In its oppressive atmosphere of fog, mist, and mud, nothing conjures up the dreary days of November and its "implacable" weather like the celebrated opening of Bleak House. The plot concerns a long-running legal dispute (Jarndyce and Jarndyce) that has far-reaching consequences for all involved. Dickens' assault on the flaws of the British judiciary system is based in part on his own experiences as a law clerk. His harsh characterization of the slow, arcane Chancery law process gave voice to widespread frustration with the system, helping to set the stage for its eventual reform in the 1870s.This novel represents the highest point of Dickens' intellectual maturity. Over the years, it has been one of his most popular books, and it was recently turned into a PBS film starring Gillian Anderson.More
"Vigorous satire....[with] a host of interesting minor characters." (The Concise Oxford Companion to English Literature)
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