Friday, 24 April 2015

The London Reading List No.25: Great Expectations

Throughout March & April 2015 we'll be compiling our definitive London Reading List. 

We've asked London Walks Guides & London Walkers to recommend a favourite book or story, and we've also raided the archives here at The Daily Constitutional to bring a rich and varied selection of London-themed and London-set reading matter.

Whether you live here in London, work here, play here or if you are in the throws of planning a trip to visit us here, these are the books you need to read. As usual, you can give us a shout with your own recommendations – thrillers, literary classics, biographies, anthologies, anything! – at the usual email address, via Twitter or Facebook, or simply leave a comment below.

25. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Isobel brings in Great Expectations…

I know Charles Dickens is going to come up all over London in this series, so here is my favourite, Great Expectations, which coincidentally features Walworth where I lead the Chaplin, Cricket and Artists walk. It is where Sam Wemmick''s little house can be found, complete with gothic details, bridge and flag.

Adam adds:

Orwell wrote in 1940: "When Dickens has once described something you see it for the rest of your life." I first read Great Expectations more than two decades ago and still ‘see’ almost all of it vividly in my mind’s eye.”

Our late colleague Jean also held Great Expectations dear to her heart. Writing for this blog last year she described it as:

“A rite of passage narrative, great characters and set in the landscape and time where my great great great grandfather was surgeon on the hulks.”

Isobel is an artist, journalist, linguist, prize-winning Blue Badge Guide and London Walks' token aristocrat. One of her ancestors introduced the waltz to this country.


A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at

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