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The mystery of Dickens remains unsolved

A bloodless life of the great Victorian writer offers little new

By Matthew Adams   July 2020
Dickens at work

Dickens at work

Literary biographers love a puzzle. But few practitioners of the craft have answered the allure of enigma with the alacrity of AN Wilson. His study of CS Lewis made much of the apparent conundrum that the creator of Narnia was able to inspire in equal measure feelings of hostility and affection. His Life of Milton placed at its heart the supposed paradox that the man who was capable of writing Paradise Lost was also capable of treating his wife and daughters appallingly. The result,…

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