Vanity Fair, Paperback
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


With an Introduction and Notes by Owen Knowles, University of Hull.

Thackeray's upper-class Regency world is a noisy and jostling commercial fairground, predominantly driven by acquisitive greed and soulless materialism, in which the narrator himself plays a brilliantly versatile role as a serio-comic observer.

Although subtitled A Novel without a Hero, Vanity Fair follows the fortunes of two contrasting but inter-linked lives: through the retiring Amelia Sedley and the brilliant Becky Sharp, Thackeray examines the position of women in an intensely exploitative male world.

When Vanity Fair was published in 1848, Charlotte Bronte commented: 'The more I read Thackeray'sworks the more certain I am that he stands alone - alone in his sagacity, alone in his truth, alone in his feeling...Thackeray is a Titan.'


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 720 pages
  • Publisher: Wordsworth Editions Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Classic fiction (pre c 1945)
  • ISBN: 9781853260193


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Thackeray's novel without a hero, a story of the manners and morality of society in the years around the Battle of Waterloo, is a respected and admired classic, and also - perhaps more importantly - a document of the time. Like the other writers of his period, Thackeray is more than happy to digress, to follow a tangent away from his story to describe a time or place, and like Hugo's 'Les Miserables' it is in these digressions that the most interesting details emerge.

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