It is said that all England mourned the heartbreaking fate of little Paul Dombey, but it is the ordeal of his loving and long-suffering sister, Florence, that carries the full emotional weight of the story. Their father’s cold obsession with the future of his business empire, the malevolent plotting of his greedy manager, Mr. Carker, and the tragic self-contempt of his proud second wife, Edith, cast a dark shadow over the life of the motherless girl. But as the world of Dombey and Son begins to fall to pieces, Florence is sustained by the warmth and brightness of humbler allies: her fiercely loyal nurse, Susan Nipper; her haplessly devoted suitor, Toots; the rough but loveable old salt Captain Cuttle and his friend Sol Gills; and her fervent admirer, the orphan Walter Gay. In its locomotive power and its transcendent moments of suspense and revelation, Dombey and Son is a superb example of Dickens’s ability to combine the qualities of a social historian, a theatrical artist, and a poet of the utmost tenderness and insight.
Charles Dickens set this tale of a hard-hearted businessman, the son he pins all his hopes on, and the daughter he cruelly neglects in a country undergoing the storms of change brought by the Industrial Revolution.