At the centre of the novel there is a long-running legal case, "Jarndyce and Jarndyce", which connects many different characters and sub-plots. The heroine of the novel is Esther Summerson who is raised as an orphan by Miss Barbary and does not know her parents¿ identity. After the death of Miss Barbary, John Jarndyce becomes Esther¿s guardian, and she moves in with him at Bleak House. There she makes a surprising discovery, and things start to move. Charles John Huffam Dickens (1812-1870) was an English writer and is regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian time. Some of the world¿s best-known fictional characters were created by him. His short stories and novels enjoy everlasting popularity, and many modern critics and scholars even regard him as a literary genius. "Bleak House" is one of Dickens¿ major novels and was first published as a serial of 20 monthly instalments (1852-1853). This edition contains the original beautiful illustrations by Hablot Knight Browne aka Phiz (1815-1882).
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