Now for the book... It's no good to speak bad of Dickens, but I will. Just a tiny bit of critic will not offend him, I hope. So... dear Dickens, Nell just pisses me off, and her grandfather adds to the experience. She is so nauseatingly angelic and perfect, so meek and dull, so bad in making right decisions, that I wanted to close the book every time the narration turned to her and her grandfather. As for him, gambling and stealing is not pardonable, and even though reader is supposed to believe he is only doing it out of his great love for Nell, he is just a selfish, addicted and mad old man. All the parts with these two were specifically designed to make readers shed a tear, and I hate tearfulness just for the sake of it. So I wasn't touched with their deaths at all, because they were dead to me from the beginning. And enough of them.
Who I really cared for was Kit! That's my boy! He is also good and kind, but he is REAL. He's active and caring and honest, and I really like the way he supports his family. He has gained everybody's respect, and it is no surprise his friends do everything to get him out of trouble. I couldn't put the book down during his process, because I was so nervous how it'd end!
The plot is somehow confusing for me, as I didn't understand all the motivations of the characters. Is Quilp just stupid to search for a beggar, thinking he has some hidden treasure? Oh, no, he just wants to make fun of poor Dick Swiveller, marrying him to the supposedly rich Nell, and he hasn't ever seen Dick before... Seriously, the main bad guy in the book has to plot something cleverer to be convincing. But anyway, he is drown in the end, so justice triumphs.
What I really enjoyed without any "but"s in this book is the descriptions of the cities and the secondary characters Nell and her grandfather meet on their way. I think that the title really means not the shop itself, but that the book is a collection of curiosities of human nature itself. And as this, it is a certain classic!