Charles Dickens was born in a little house in Landport, Portsea, England, on February 7th, 1812. At the age of eleven, Dickens was taken out of school and sent to work in a London blacking warehouse, where his job was to paste labels on bottles for six shillings a week. When the family fortunes improved, Charles went back to school, after which he became an office boy, a freelance reporter, and finally an author. With Pickwick Papers (1836-7) he achieved immediate fame; in a few years he was easily the most popular and respected writer of his time. It has been estimated that one out of every ten persons in Victorian England was a Dickens reader. Oliver Twist (1837), Nicholas Nickelby (1838-9), and The Old Curiosity Shop (1840-41) were huge successes. Martin Chuzzlewit (1843-4) was less so, but Dickens followed it with his unforgettable A Christmas Carol (1843). Bleak House (1852-3), Hard Times (1854), and Little Dorrit (1855-7) reveal his deepening concern for the injustices of British society. A Tale of Two Cities (1859), Great Expectations (1860-61) and Our Mutual Friend (1864-5) complete his major works.