The Old Curiosity Shop by Charles Dickens
Gentle Nell Trent lives a simple, if solitary life with her doting grandfather in his curiosity shop. Her parents died in poverty and unbeknownst to Nell her grandfather is obsessed with winning her an inheritance through gambling, but is forced to borrow heavily from malicious money-lender Quilp. As their debts mount up Nell and her grandfather are forced to flee London, pursued by the vindictive Quilp and others who seek to exploit them, in Dicken's classic tale of pathos and villainy.
'His characters are marvellous, his insights wonderful... Dickens is the father of magic realism. You don't expect reality but you get something bigger and better' Ruth Rendell
'It could be argued that The Old Curiosity Shop changed the expression of grief in the English-speaking world' Peter Ackroyd