London fog, mystery, romance! This classic Victorian novel has it all (as it should, clocking in at over 900 pages). If you're up for tackling a tome, scholars say that this is Dickens' best work. Known for his social commentary on class, Dickens takes readers from high society to the London slums, with plenty of characters to meet. Break it up in 144 increments with the Serial Reader app for a more digestible reading experience.
Bleak House opens in the twilight of foggy London, where fog grips the city most densely in the Court of Chancery. The obscure case of Jarndyce and Jarndyce, in which an inheritance is gradually devoured by legal costs, the romance of Esther Summerson and the secrets of her origin, the sleuthing of Detective Inspector Bucket and the fate of Jo the crossing-sweeper, these are some of the lives Dickens invokes to portray London society, rich and poor, as no other novelist has done. Bleak House, in its atmosphere, symbolism and magnificent bleak comedy, is often regarded as the best of Dickens. A ‘great Victorian novel’, it is so inventive in its competing plots and styles that it eludes interpretation.