Charles Dickens (1812-70) had his first, astounding success with his first novel The Pickwick Papers and never looked back. In an extraordinarily full life he wrote, campaigned and spoke on a huge range of issues, and was involved in many of the key aspects of Victorian life, by turns cajoling, moving and irritating. He completed fourteen full-length novels and volume after volume of journalism. Hard Times delivers a powerful indictment of materialism in industrial society, and vividly portrays the perils of the institutionalised crushing of imagination and creativity. The Pickwick Papers, Oliver Twist, Nicholas Nickleby, The Old Curiosity Shop, Barnaby Rudge, A Christmas Carol, Martin Chuzzlewit, Dombey and Son, David Copperfield, Bleak House, Little Dorrit, A Tale of Two Cities, Great Expectations, Our Mutual Friend and The Mystery of Edwin Drood are also published in the Penguin English Library.