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The official biography of Charles Dickens (1812-70) was published in 1872-4 by his close friend and literary executor John Forster, and has been reissued in this series. Of the many other memoirs and reminiscences of the great novelist, this book by his favourite daughter Mary (1838-96), known as Mamie, is perhaps the least familiar. Published in 1896, shortly after her death, it gives a loving picture, based on her own memories, of the person whom she held 'in my heart of hearts as a man apart from all other men, as one apart from all other beings'. Mamie, who had taken Dickens's side during the separation from his wife, and acted effectively as his housekeeper at Gad's Hill, had compiled an edition of her father's letters with her aunt Georgina Hogarth, and this second act of piety gives an idyllic - perhaps too idyllic - account of daily life with Dickens.