Yikes, this was a long slog. I got off to a bad start, probably because I was distracted by too many other things. But, Dickens is truly excellent, and this book was good. Not my favorite so far, but still good. I picked it because I read that "experts" considered this to be Dickens' finest. It wasn't for me, but it is a good book.
I did, however, have some issues. It took me a while to become reconciled to the back-and-forth changes in story teller from Esther, who was writing up her own recollections of things, to some omniscient entity who was writing the mostly non-Esther parts in present tense. After a while, I did become reconciled and enjoyed the action.
Also, there were so many characters flitting in and out that I had rather a problem keeping them straight.
I think my major problem, however, relates to my feelings that it was rather creepy how women were patronized and manipulated in this book. I realize my problem is a sensibility from 150 years after the book was written, but none-the-less, it felt creepy. I had similar issues with the end of the Count of Monte Cristo
. Thank goodness, we have come a long way in our views regarding whether or not women are fully human.