Originally Posted by demonrail666
I don't think people read Dickens now for his way with words, which is incredibly bloated at times, at least by today's standards, but for his creation of characters that seem to have near universal relevance, and for his social conscious. We can all play the game of dismissing a great writer on purely formal, medium specific grounds, but we dismiss a lot of great writers that way and end up celebrating a lot of mediocre ones in their place.
This pretty much sums it up. I dunno, I've grown up with Dickens all my life so I've a soft spot for him.
Thing is, people have anything else to do
in terms of entertainment. So having a book that may be bloated by today's standards was nothing. You could easily spend hours reading with no other distractions around.