A Tale of Two Cities (Signet Classics) by Charles Dickens

By Charles Dickens

That includes a brand new advent by way of literature pupil Frederick Busch, the immortal novel of the French Revolution tells the tale of the brave Sydney Carton, a guy able to provide his existence for a girl who seriously isn't his. Reprint."

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Sample text

The obscurity was so difficult to penetrate that Mr. Lorry, picking his way over the well-worn Turkey carpet, supposed Miss Manette to be, for the moment, in some adjacent room, until, having got past the two tall candles, he saw, standing to receive him by the table between them and the fire, a young lady of not more than seventeen, in a riding-cloak, and still holding her straw travelling-hat by its ribbon in her hand. As his eyes rested on a short, slight, pretty figure, a quantity of golden hair, a pair of blue eyes that met his own with an inquiring look, and a forehead with a singular capacity (remembering how young and smooth it was) of lifting and knitting itself into an expression that was not quite one of perplexity, or wonder, or alarm, or merely of a bright fixed attention, though it included all the four expressions—as his eyes rested on these things, a sudden vivid likeness passed before him, of a child whom he had held in his arms on the passage across that very Channel, one cold time, when the hail drifted heavily and the sea ran high.

Sometimes it was staring and bewildered, and then it was, “I don’t know her. ” After such imaginary discourse, the passenger in his fancy would dig, and dig, dig—now with a spade, now with a great key, now with his hands—to dig this wretched creature out. Got out at last, with earth hanging about his face and hair, he would suddenly fall away to dust. The passenger would then start to himself, and lower the window, to get the reality of mist and rain on his cheek. Yet even when his eyes were opened on the mist and rain, on the moving patch of light from the lamps, and the hedge at the roadside retreating by jerks, the night shadows outside the coach would fall into the train of the night shadows within.

Madame Defarge is not only a revolutionary and the cunning keeper of underground resistance secrets: she is Lady Macbeth, according to the dark vision of this novel; she is everything bloody and dangerous, and she is contrasted to the angelic, endangered Lucie Manette. Madame Defarge is the soul of this revolution. She is a French Victory, which is represented, always, as a woman; but she is not merely the emblematic, heroic national spirit one sees in, for example, Victory Leading the People by Eugene Delacroix.

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