Cover image for Charles Dickens and his publishers
Charles Dickens and his publishers
Patten, Robert L.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Oxford [Eng.] : Clarendon Press ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1978.
Physical Description:
xiv, 502 pages, 5 unnumbered leaves of plates : illustrations ; 22 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :

On Order

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Patten (Univ. of London, UK) traces Dickens's sometimes-difficult relations with publishers--British, Continental, and American--and problems with copyright through the various stages of his career. Four appendixes present an analysis of the account books of the novelist's two principal publishers, Chapman and Hall and Bradbury and Evans, for the period from 1846 to 1870. These appendixes cover sales and profits of Dickens's works; printing history of the monthly serials; income from Dickens's works for Dickens himself and for the two publishers; and income from Dickens's weekly periodicals, Household Words and All the Year Round. The first edition of this work appeared four decades ago (CH, Jun'79), and the new edition adds a preface with an account of the genesis of the book and the vicissitudes the author encountered as he struggled to determine how to make such matters as sales figures and profits interesting and how to make the book marketable. Another addition is an epilogue that concerns the distribution of Dickens's estate and the sales and adaptations into the 21st century. The book will be fascinating for anyone who has read a biography of Dickens and wants to learn more, though those who own the first edition may not wish to acquire this one. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty; general readers. --J. Don Vann, emeritus, University of North Texas