I've made it to chapter 16 of Martin Chuzzlewit, with Martin and Mark arriving in America. Just now Martin is talking to the editor of the New York Rowdy Journal (heh). I know my progress has been rather slow; it's my bad habit of reading many books at once.
So now I'm bracing myself a little, as I've been somewhat dreading this part. Dickens's quarrel with America -- though I realize he had his reasons -- is not one of my favorite things about him. I'm fond of my country, warts and all, and it makes me sad that he disliked it so much, at least on that first visit. I think that's partly why I waited so long to read this novel.
I have enjoyed it so far, though. I'm particularly eager right now to see if and how Tom and Mary are going to get together. Clearly they're made for each other, but equally clearly, they're the kind of "desperately honor-bound people" (as Robin McKinley brilliantly puts it in her novel Beauty) who wouldn't dream of letting down Martin -- the young hound. So I have a feeling this is going to be tricky . . .