Often considered one of the greatest of all English comic novels, Tom Jones is a romp though 18th-century England with one of the most companionable and delightful fictional characters ever created—and one of the first in literature to display realistic sides of human virtue and vice. Henry Fielding chronicles the picaresque life of Tom, an illegitimate foundling who, despite a generous heart, has a naive inability to resist a pretty face, and is banished from his Squire's house. When the girl he truly loves runs away to escape her arranged marriage to his rival, the despicable Blifil, Tom pursues her to London, embarking on a series of riotous and frequently amorous adventures.
"Two hundred years have not dimmed Fielding's realism. His humor is closer to our own than that of any other writer before the [20th] century."—Kingsley Amis