Here's an encouraging piece for those of us who are always looking for ways to help the younger generation learn to love Dickens. Abhilash Gaur writes The Times of India that he's been reading David Copperfield and other Dickens works to his seven-year-old son, and that though he needs to use simplified editions, he's been impressed by his son's understanding of and attraction to the plots and characters:
"I can see that my little Pip has been in love with Estella (now with Em’ly, since he is David); he has sensed trouble as the Artful Dodger leads Oliver to Fagin’s shack. He has threatened to squash Monks’ head, and he has cheered when David bites Mr Murdstone’s hand. He absolutely detests Miss Murdstone. But most of all, my David is heartbroken by mother’s death. . . . It’s good to nudge kids towards airy and cheerful books, but perhaps it’s just as well to expose them to meatier plots from literature as soon as they can stomach them."
On this note, I'd like to give a shoutout to my nine-year-old goddaughter, who recently picked out and bought David Copperfield all on her own! I suspect she may need just to dabble in it for a while before she's fully ready to take the plunge -- that's not at all a bad way to start -- but I hope that this will one day lead to a lifelong enjoyment of Dickens for her.