I just finished rereading A Tale of Two Cities. It was such a burden at the beginning. Then, all of a sudden, I got the author’s point. I started appreciating the delicate structure of his sentences, and his so rich narration mechanisms. He’s the opposite of Julian Barnes and Alice Munro. To appreciate Dickens, you must read him slowly. You must appreciate the language, the expressions, rather than the pace or the plot.
Dickens is the master of eloquent literary narration. His work is a particular genre between fiction, poetry and linguistic lecture. To appreciate him, you must observe the mechanics of his sentences and the architecture of his chapters. He is a fine literary architect rather than a fiction narrator.
I suggest to read, or reread, A Tale of Two Cities. Besides its literary delight, it depicts the paradoxes, and the dilemmas, of the French revolution in a brilliant way. Violence must not be praised. Even if it’s driven by noble intentions. What started as a splendid quest of freedom ended up as a horrific work of human butchery. A romantic real-life fresco, sketched with slaughter and painted with blood.