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Vanity Fair

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Summary

Discover this ultimate classic for the first time or fall in love with an old favourite all over again.

Status:
Complete
Chapters:
68
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
13+

Before the curtain

As the manager of the Performance sits before the curtain on the boards and looks into the Fair, a feeling of profound melancholy comes over him in his survey of the bustling place. There is a great quantity of eating and drinking, making love and jilting, laughing and the contrary, smoking, cheating, fighting, dancing and fiddling; there are bullies pushing about, bucks ogling the women, knaves picking pockets, policemen on the look-out, quacks (OTHER quacks, plague take them!) bawling in front of their booths, and yokels looking up at the tinselled dancers and poor old rouged tumblers, while the light-fingered folk are operating upon their pockets behind. Yes, this is VANITY FAIR; not a moral place certainly; nor a merry one, though very noisy. Look at the faces of the actors and buffoons when they come off from their business; and Tom Fool washing the paint off his cheeks before he sits down to dinner with his wife and the little Jack Puddings behind the canvas. The curtain will be up presently, and he will be turning over head and heels, and crying, "How are you?"

A man with a reflective turn of mind, walking through an exhibition of this sort, will not be oppressed, I take it, by his own or other people's hilarity. An episode of humour or kindness touches and amuses him here and there—a pretty child looking at a gingerbread stall; a pretty girl blushing whilst her lover talks to her and chooses her fairing; poor Tom Fool, yonder behind the waggon, mumbling his bone with the honest family which lives by his tumbling; but the general impression is one more melancholy than mirthful. When you come home you sit down in a sober, contemplative, not uncharitable frame of mind, and apply yourself to your books or your business.

I have no other moral than this to tag to the present story of "Vanity Fair." Some people consider Fairs immoral altogether, and eschew such, with their servants and families: very likely they are right. But persons who think otherwise, and are of a lazy, or a benevolent, or a sarcastic mood, may perhaps like to step in for half an hour, and look at the performances. There are scenes of all sorts; some dreadful combats, some grand and lofty horse-riding, some scenes of high life, and some of very middling indeed; some love-making for the sentimental, and some light comic business; the whole accompanied by appropriate scenery and brilliantly illuminated with the Author's own candles.

What more has the Manager of the Performance to say?—To acknowledge the kindness with which it has been received in all the principal towns of England through which the Show has passed, and where it has been most favourably noticed by the respected conductors of the public Press, and by the Nobility and Gentry. He is proud to think that his Puppets have given satisfaction to the very best company in this empire. The famous little Becky Puppet has been pronounced to be uncommonly flexible in the joints, and lively on the wire; the Amelia Doll, though it has had a smaller circle of admirers, has yet been carved and dressed with the greatest care by the artist; the Dobbin Figure, though apparently clumsy, yet dances in a very amusing and natural manner; the Little Boys' Dance has been liked by some; and please to remark the richly dressed figure of the Wicked Nobleman, on which no expense has been spared, and which Old Nick will fetch away at the end of this singular performance.

And with this, and a profound bow to his patrons, the Manager retires, and the curtain rises.

LONDON, June 28, 1848

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Further Recommendations

Pink_Venom_007: L'histoire est trop cool

Stefanie: Ich bin positiv von dieser Geschichte überrascht. Es handelt von tollen starken Charakteren. Und es zeigt einem, wie stark Freunde gemeinsam sein können.

dtjenkins5: A good read with all the complexities of relationships. The twists and turns of the plot add a special dimension.

FiU: Zum Dahinschmelzen. Tolle Geschichte. Hoffe auf Band 2 über die besten Freunde.Bitte mehr Zeit für die Rechtschreibung aufwenden.

Erika: Yooo where’s the second part?!

nizaly: Muy bonita historia y divertida.gracias

Annie Kay: The dirt bag behavior with Marcus and erica was annoying and this story was amazing. The relationship development wasn't over time but more over rushed at the end and erica should have lost her relationship with Marcus when he started to be kind to his wife. It was a good story.

2jlynn: Cannot imagine all that went on in Annalisa had going on in her life the past 2 years... then to top it off with her dad stepping in taking care of everything her an Eagle would need yet expecting nothing in return. Yes, it's a book, but nothing can stop the dreaming.

2jlynn: How can people do such horrible things... especially to the innocent? My heart hurts thinking of what is reality for some individuals. My life may not be "storybook", but comparatively speaking, there is nothing to complain about.

More Recommendations

Reader0409: I’m really enjoying the story. Thank so much for sharing it with us.

Deloris McCoy: I like these type of stories. This is a good one. I will be reading the rest of them. Keep writing.

Janis Hynes: Really good!’n

Diane: I was really hoping that this book didn’t repeat the themes in the previous. It is the best one so far. Best thing I’ve read in a long time!

Diane: This is a good read. Be careful of reiterating the books previously written.

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