I'm a little curious as to why you need a brief summary of the whole novel? If it is a school or college project, then surely the idea is that you should read the book yourself in order that you might then form your own opinion of its content, and to then write a summary based on your own knowledge and understanding of the plot etc. If you watch a film version of a novel, the story is played out for you visually, based on the imagination and interpretation of the film makers. This of course leaves very little to your own imagination. If on the other hand you read the book, the author will most probably have provided only basic outlines of the characters, which then gives you considerable scope to visualise the appearance and personalities of the characters in the novel, and that effectively means that you have some part to play in how that story unfolds to you the reader. This is certainly the case with Charles Dickens novels. If you examine them more closely, you will find that despite the fact that we think we know his characters quite intimately and in great detail, he actually provides only very sketchy outlines of most of his characters in most of his novels. This was in part at least, his great art and skill. Probably one of the reasons he is considered to be one of England's great writers, and why his writings are still so popular all over the world. That is something you will fail to learn and appreciate if you rely solely on other peoples opinions of the writers you are presumably supposed to be studying. Of course you could be asking this question for some other reason entirely, in which case I have to ask your forgiveness for being so presumptuous. But that being said, maybe you should still try reading Dickens yourself anyway. You never know, you might actually enjoy them. A lot of other people have and are still doing so!! Great Expectations is one of the best of his novels and although obviously set in a period long past, the plot which follows the life of a boy from a very young age, through some diffcult times to his eventual happiness in early maturity, is quite easily transposable to the present time. In fact I know that a remake of the film has been made with its location now transposed to America and set in the current time. Regrettably I don't know what the title of the film is, and as I haven't seen it myself I can't actually recommend it, but is shows that there is still considerable interest in the story. Throughout his life journey, the boy (Pip), has many interesting experiences which help to develop his character, and these include the happiness and joy of childhood, early emotional and probably sexual awareness and infatuation, fear, jealosy, pride. pity, gratitude, happiness and sadness and the whole gamut of human emotions. The novel has humour, social comment, suspense and mystery and pretty much everything that you could expect to find in any modern novel except perhaps foul and abusive language. So there you are. If it contains all that, surely its worth taking a look yourself if only to prove me wrong!!