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I rate Daphne Du Maurier'sRebeccaas my favourite English novel. The characterisation of Mrs Danvers is supremely evil.

Great Expectationswould have to rate as a very close second for its detail and fast-paced action.

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Is there another similar discussion post to this?  I just know I wrote an answer yesterday in which I said Pride and Prejudice...  Hmm.

Well, I would say Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.  This is a novel that addresses social class, women's roles, love, relationships, and still maintains an amazing level of pure readability for the sake of enjoyment.  Of all the classics, this is a novel that continues to be admired as not only an amazing piece of writing and fiction, but also for the sheer love that readers have for it.  I've read (and reread...and reread) this book and still love it.

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My vote also goes to Heart of Darkness, despite the third poster's trouble with the book. I'm with poster #4. This novel is captivating in so many ways and so fully articulate of a challenging and mysterious subject - the limits of morality. I've never read a book like it. 

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I'm partial to Great Expectations. I love Charles Dickens' plotting and characterization, and he can write incredible sentences. He gets a little melodramatic at times, but he has a sympathy for the common people that few writers can match.

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I have said before that Heart of Darkness would be my choice. It squeezes more commentary about humanity into a short novel than any other book I can think of. The use of darkness as metaphor, the consistently foreboding mood, and the memorability of Kurtz as a character make it the best in my book. If I were forced to choose a best English language book, I'd probably choose something diffferent, but Heart of Darkness is my favorite English book. 

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First, I would suggest that this question be moved to the Discussion Board. I am sure many editors will have to chime in on this one given the different tastes of literature.

I have to say that my all-time favorite English novel is Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. The novel was written during one of my favorite periods, the Romantic Period, and includes characteristics of the Gothic as well.

As for the story itself, it speaks of actions and consequences, life and death, love, family, and sparks a huge question about science and religion. Overall, I believe the ambiguous nature of the Creature's physical appearance can speak to all readers given the Creature's physical appearance can change from reader to reader.

Outside of that, many different criticisms can be applied to the text. Also, many different filmatic adaptions have been made on the ideas and characters created in the novel. Much can be criticized in this regard as well.

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