The Pickwick Papers was Dickens' first novel, written at the tender age of 24 and published in monthly instalments from 1836-1837. The story follows the 'perambulations, perils, travels, adventures and sporting transactions of the corresponding members' of The Pickwick Club as they travel across England. I found the funniest parts of the book to be the early chapters where Dickens seems to be concentrating more on pure humour/satire by creating brilliant caricatures and there were several incidents that had me laughing out loud whilst I was reading (fortunately I was reading at home). As the serial progresses Dickens seems to move away from this approach to create more rounded, sympathetic characters, particularly where Mr Pickwick himself is concerned and whilst that meant there were fewer laugh out loud moments it also meant I became fonder of the characters. A note on my edition: My copy was the 2003 Penguin Classics edition and as well as including some very helpful notes on the text and an introduction, this edition also showed where each monthly part ended so I was able to read along as the original subscribers to the serial would have received it (yes, I am a Dickens geek). This edition also comes complete with the original illustrations by Seymour and Phiz which are absolutely superb and really add to the story. All in all, I can't recommend this book enough and I'm only sorry it took me so long to get round to rereading it.