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Although I didn't manage to convince him, I remembered all over again why I love Dickens - the richness, the pictures, the feelings, so much in there. Reading aloud made me slow down and not skim over the detail, creating vivid pictures in my head. Not many authors can do it so well.
Dickens had the qualities of a Nobel Prize Winner in Literature, and had the potential to win if Nobel Prizes' Competition existed during the tenure of his existence.
Dickens described the British underpriveleged soceities in his novels with such real feelings for the characters in the novels such as " Oliver Twist", "Tales of Two Cities"equipped with the skills liked a master storyteller in his generation.
Though it's not about reading aloud, I found this recent piece on Dickens aficionados interesting: http://bostonglobe.com/opinion/2011/12/02/connected-dickens/0JfoF8vkanre61z0m9CX...
The Naxos unabridged audiobooks of Dickens on CD are uniformly superb, if very pricey. I'm halfway through listening to bleak house at the moment, for the second time. I know that some people sneer at audiobooks, but for me, working all day on a computer, with eyes too tired to read in the evening, these have been a godsend.
Some people sneer at Dickens as well. Their problem :) If audiobooks work for you, then they are good.:)
My husband and I have had a weekly read-aloud date every Wednesday night for 13 years now. He reads to me, and I butt in and criticize or ask questions, to which he always responds patiently, "I just read what it says." We've done everything from Harry Potter to Daniel Dennett this way.
My first experience of books was being read to at bedtime as a little girl.