The first 250 pages were boring to me, except for the interactions between Pip and Estella. There was way too much back story, though it did lead to some great character development. It all leads up to a pinnacle moment, and once that moment is reached (no spoilers!), it’s like a rollercoaster soap opera, with one twist after another, until the very end. Unfortunately it takes about 300 pages to get there, but once it’s there you won’t regret having picked up this book.
I was a little biased toward this book because I am in love with the movie, and while the characters are the same (though not their names – awkward), the differences are such that it makes it seem like a different story. But the actors chosen for the movie couldn’t have been a better representation of Dickens’ characters, and having seen the movie really enriched my experience with the book.
The book offered twists and haunting scenes that weren’t in the movie, and one in particular that the movie should have adopted. The book was also a lot more dramatic than the movie, tying everyone together in the end, where the movie left things more to the imagination.
In one of the last scenes in the book, I actually got goosebumps, which books don’t generally do for me, so for that reason alone I’d recommend it. I actually recommend seeing the movie first (which I immediately ordered on Amazon for nostalgia’s sake), to get a really vivid image of the characters. Here’s a trailer/video that highlights it pretty well, though I can’t find enough on the unforgettable Miss Havisham/Dinsmoor: