Customer Reviews for

A Christmas Carol

Average Rating 4
( 52 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 51 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2003

    A Christmas Carol Audiobook read by Jim Dale

    I once heard it said that to appreciate Dickens best, one should read his stories aloud. I have never had the time to try to do this, but having just listened to a new unabridged reading of A Christmas Carol from Random House, I can see the validity of the statement. Playing the CD's I felt as if the narrator was, in the words of Dickens himself, 'standing in the spirit at your elbow.' And what a narrator! The multi-talented Jim Dale reads the story...no, that is not correct...Jim Dale PERFORMS the story. I counted 42 voices in the three-hour recording. Jim Dale is well known for his over 200 voices (and counting) bringing to life all of the characters in the Harry Potter books, which he also records for Random House's Listening Library. I first saw Jim Dale in the 1977 Disney movie Pete's Dragon where he played the bumbling villain. The next year he played three hilarious characters in another Disney film, Hot Lead and Cold Feet. I was lucky to see him in two musicals on Broadway, in Barnum, and Me and My Girl. Both very memorable performances. I plan to see him next month as he sings and dances Scrooge in Madison Square Garden's Christmas Carol - The Musical. I figure if he is great in the audiobook, he will be even better on stage. An actor has only two tools...his voice and his body. In the audiobooks, of course, only the voice can be used. And Dale's voice talents are well showcased here. I often found myself laughing out loud, thanks to the combined genius of Dickens and Dale. In a couple of cases, the genius is pure Dale. At one point he adds a bit of a dog's panting that really cracked me up. I have seen and/or heard other wonderful actors do one-man renditions of A Christmas Carol. A number of years ago a friend played a tape for me of John Gielgud doing an abridged version. I saw Patrick Stewart do his acclaimed one man show on Broadway; from the first row! And I have seen the author's great-great grandson, Gerald Dickens do his skilled and energetic version several times. They are all memorable and it would be impossible to say which was the best. But I can heartily recommend that Jim Dale's version be added to the family library. It is complete, it is accurate and it is a virtuoso performance. Although I certainly know the story well, I found by listening to the audiobook I was paying closer attention to the lesser known parts...the parts that, to be honest, I usually would skim over when rereading the book. In fact, there were several sections where I felt as if I were hearing them for the first time. Marvelous sections. I couldn't believe I had missed them in the past. Maybe Jim Dale's voice just made them more vibrant than my own inner voice. I suppose that asking me to review Jim Dale reading A Christmas Carol really isn't fair. One of my favorite performers reading my favorite story by my favorite author! But surely I am not alone. Dickens is universally known as England's greatest novelist. I wouldn't be surprised if Jim Dale was gaining a reputation as one of the world's greatest readers of audiobooks. They are both master storytellers. And to quote the Dickens himself, 'If that's not high praise, tell me higher, and I'll use it.'

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2003

    SPLENDID READING OF A CLASSIC TALE

    Since 1843 the timeless story A Christmas Carol has been as much a part of our holiday season as Santa and wreaths on the door. Many of us have heard it dozens of times; others may be hearing it for the first time. For those who have heard it - what's old is new again with this incredible performance by acclaimed actor Jim Dale. For those who have not heard it as yet - let this recording be your introduction. Mr. Dale is the quintessential Ebenezer Scrooge, the most miserly of misers. Without missing a beat this talented performer becomes the ebullient, hopeful Bob Cratchit, as well as the chillingingly mysterious Christmas Eve visitors - the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Christmas Present, and Christmas Future. Well remembered for the characters he enlivened with the Harry Potter audio books, Mr. Dale has garnered a bevy of awards including a Tony Award, four Drama Desk Awards, a Grammy Award, and an Academy Award nomination. This year there's more frosting on the cake - in the 2003 Royal Birthday Honours List, Queen Elizabeth II bestowed Jim Dale with an MBE, Member of the Order of the British Empire. Hearing this reading of 'A Christmas Carol' is not only a superb listening experience but a heartwarming reminder of the meaning of Christmas.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    Owlcry

    Watched him go, desperation and admiration sparkling in her violet gaze. She looked exactly like Aspen. Except for the blue shadowung her purplr eyes.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    Moon

    She wanted to leap but fear of hurting darkfur stopped her. "Stop it Scourge." She snarled. "Darkfur has done nothing."

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    F!re

    She padded in and made a nest away from everyone else and slept.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    good book for an independent reader!

    I bought it for my younger brother who became an independent reader! and even though he struggled with some vocabs he learned a lot! I think it is well written for adolescents.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Good adaptation

    This is a good adaptation of the book. This is an easy read for young adolescents.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2010

    If you like the movies, you must read the book.

    I have at least 8 movie DVDs of "A Christmas Story", and they all emphasize, de-emphasize, or delete certain scenes. They are all quite faithful to the book however.
    The book is much smaller than I expected, and easily read in a evening or two.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2010

    Why you should read this book.

    The Book a Christmas Carol was a good book, but yes it is very confusing.
    Description and summary of main points
    The book was about a man named Scrooge who seems to not like anything and Christmas is one of them. When he was a boy he was engaged to a beautiful woman and she left him because he was to selfish. As he got older he began his own business and stuff.
    Evaluation
    I like it a lot and I suggest you to read it.
    Conclusion
    It teaches people a very good lesson
    Your final review
    I like the book and the movie is good too hopefully one day you'll read it and get a good lesson out of it like did.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2009

    Good Story

    The Christmas Carol is a very entertaining story. The characters are well written. And the setting adds to the story.
    A favorite point of the story to me is when the ghost of Christmas past comes to show Scrooge all that he's lost. Some other points are; first Marley comes to warn Scrooge of the three impending ghosts, then when the ghost of the past comes to show Scrooge the people in life that he loved and lost, thirdly the ghost of Christmas present arrives and shows Scrooge his nephew, and last but not least when the ghost of Christmas to come, arrives to show Scrooge what will happen to Scrooge if he does not change his ways.

    "The Christmas Carol" is about a very selfish man named Scrooge. Scrooge treats every one other than himself terribly. He often snaps at his apprentice, Bob Cratchit, his nephew, Fred, and even the two portly men who come to ask him to donate money for the homeless shelter. However, the story makes a pleasant change whenever the ghost of Marley, his old business partner, arrives to warn him of three ghosts. But Scrooge passes this off as nothing and soon forgets. Although to his shock he is visited later that night by the ghost of the past, present, and future. After all of the ghosts come and go Scrooge wakes up as a new man, he is kind to every one now.
    After all of the ghosts come and go, Scrooge awakens as a new man, and a kind one at that.

    I found the "Christmas Carol" to be a very enjoyable book that many people will adore reading.

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  • Posted May 15, 2009

    A Christmas Carol.

    Introduction
    One of the themes of this novel is that people can change by learning from their mistakes. I have learned not to be greedy when someone is giving me something because Scrooge, the main character in this story, went into the future and saw the devastating results of his greed. The reason I am reviewing this book is because it was my favorite book, which my class read this year.
    Description and summary of main points
    This story is very interesting and fun to read during the Christmas time. I enjoyed reading Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol. I think if you sit down and take the time to read this story, you will like it. My opinion on the book is that it is a really good Christmas story. This Story is where Scoorge goes to Christmas past, present, and future and is forced to change how he is acting toward his renters.
    Evaluation
    The main characters were: Scoorge and Old Marley. When you are receiving money or a present, you don't have to have a return of what you gave. If Scrooge gave you money he was sure he had to have the same amount of money that he gave them back in a certain amount of time. If he didn't he would keep on until he got it, no matter how it made others feel.
    Conclusion
    Scoorge was a very mean and stingy old man. He always needed paid back for what he gave or let people borrow. He didn't like it when people didn't pay him rent. He would keep reminding them if he didn't get it on time or he would raise the rent rate to a higher amount of money.
    Your final review
    My review for this book was really good. The characters in the story found out what was going to happen in his past, present, and future. The story was great and you never knew what was going to happen. I would highly recommend this story for 6th through 9th graders. This book is a really good book to read. When I was reading it I didn't want to put it down.

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  • Posted January 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A wonderful holiday classic

    This was my first Dickens novel. I know it is kind of cheesy to make my foray into Dickens¿s work by reading A Christmas Carol during the holidays but hey¿whatever helps break the ice right? <BR/><BR/>This book, as most people already know, is about a tight-fisted, bitter old man named Ebenezer Scrooge. Scrooge is visited one night by the ghost of his partner who has come to warn Scrooge of his fate in the afterworld and that Scrooge will face similar persecution in the afterlife if he does not change his ways. Scrooge is warned that more ghosts will appear to help him redeem himself in life and prevent the perils his partner has faced in death. Scrooge is then visited by the ghost of Christmas past, the ghost of Christmas present, and the ghost of Christmas future. Scrooge is shown the actions of different people during each Christmas and he is given a choice at the end. Can he ever change? <BR/><BR/>The story was an inspiring Christmas story and helps remind people how their behavior affects others. This novel reminds us that we need to give to others who need more than we ourselves are and that the payoff for this assistance is much more fulfilling than any amount of money in the pocket or the bank could ever be. <BR/><BR/>I found this book surprisingly fun and easy to read. The novel was shorter than I expected and was not inundated with old world terms that I could not understand. I had been somewhat intimidated by Dickens prior to reading this book. However, now that I know the humorous and witty writing style of Charles Dickens I will definitely be reading more of his work in the future.

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  • Posted November 17, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    It's the Most Wonderful Version I've Ever Seen

    My child and I have had hours of fun with this story, reenacting scenes and pretending that real life people take the roles of people like Ebenezer Scrooge.<BR/><BR/>Somehow when I came across this years I ago, I felt I should buy about half a dozen as they may come in handy one day. Before my Hispanic preschool Sunday School Class, often my room is full of children, and when it gets cold, I think this will be the perfect thing to share with them. They're learn both about Christianity and the ethical roots of my culture. Unfortunately, when some bump into folks that remind them of Ebenezer Scrooge or other antagonists, then, they can see the rest of the culture that way. Nevertheless, no culture is defined by our antagonists, but by the good wholesome culture that unites us.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2008

    The ultimate Christmas story

    I have loved this book since I could read and now I'm turning my children on to this same great book. We read a lot as a family but this book stands out among most.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2008

    Great text, okay presentation

    Nothing less than unabridged can ever do for this fantastic piece of literature. This is probably Dickens best literary creation ever. The reading is, however, mediocre at best. Too bad for such a great book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2008

    A christmas carol

    A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickons was a book about a greedy man named Ebenezer Scrooge who has an encounter with the ghost of Christmas past, present and future. At the end of this book he is a changed man. I rated this book okay, but not great because it tended to drone and on about something insignificant. Also, there were a lot of parts that were hard to understand and even reading them again a few times didn¿t really help to clear it up. Some examples of this are when Scrooge sees ignorance and want and when Scrooge says he sees his friend Ali Baba. This book was good because of the interesting plot. I had seen the play so I knew what was coming but it was still interesting. That is, when Dickons wasn¿t droning on about something. My favorite part is when he sends the boy on the street to go buy him a giant turkey.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2007

    a profound tale of the human heart

    Charles Dickens was, and remains, one of the foremost writers of the English language. Intense depth and feeling can be found in his exquisitely formed sentences, which are made rich by the understanding, acceptance and even joy of life which was apparently Dickens' response to a difficult childhood, frequently filled with seemingly insurmountable obstacles. 'A Christmas Carol' may be one of his finest tales. It is beautiful in its simplicity, striking in its imagery, and deeply moving in its message of hope, love, kindness and humility. It would seem impossible for anyone to read this book and get nothing from it. To young children, it may be hard to truly feel the beating heart beneath the inanimate type but years and heartache, and the hope that something good and beautiful will yet come of such things lend an appreciation for this marvelous work.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2007

    An Interesting Classic

    Ebenezer Scrooge had always hated Christmas¿until it determined his future. Now he had a choice¿be haunted by three spirits or spend his time wandering the planet as a ghost. The three spirits reviewed Scrooge¿s past, present, and future. The Ghost of Christmas Past showed Scrooge many things about his childhood. The Ghost of Christmas Present showed him a party his nephew had and a dinner at the poor Cratchit¿s house. The final spirit revealed to Scrooge his fate that could only be changed if Scrooge himself changed. This book was very interesting, and I recommend it. I enjoyed that this book was written in three different tenses: past, present, and future. The Ghost of Christmas Past took Scrooge back in time so he could review things such as his old school. The Ghost of Christmas Present simply showed Scrooge what his nephew was doing at that time (having a party). The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come revealed to Scrooge his grave, and showed him that if he gave away money and was happy, he could prevent his and Tiny Tim¿s death. This book had descriptive settings. The beginning of the story took place in a room where ¿Scrooge had a very small fire, but the clerk¿s fire was so very much smaller that it looked like one coal.¿ The Ghost of Christmas Past and Scrooge ¿passed through the wall, and stood upon an open country road with fields on either hand.¿ He also took Scrooge to ¿the busy thoroughfares of a city, where shadowy carts and coaches battled for the way, and all the strife and tumult of a real city were.¿ The characters in this book were very different from each other. Scrooge was an incredibly unkind and negative person, especially towards Christmas (until the spirits came). His nephew was quite the opposite, being kind towards others and loving Christmas. The Ghost of Christmas Present was obviously a ghost, but also a very large, kind man. A ghost, a person who hates Christmas, and a person who loves Christmas are three completely different beings. This book I recommend for all readers, especially those who like to read in great detail. I enjoy reading books like this, and I think you will like this timeless classic as well. T. Baker

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2006

    Review 4 Mrs. J

    A Christmas Carol This is the true version of a christmas carol. It was about Scrooge, a greedy, old man who hates christmas. But that night on christmas he is visited by 3 ghost. The ghost of christmas past, present and future. They show him about what has, is, and will happen to him and the people around him and he realizes what he has been missing in life and tries to make it all better. This book was written by Charles Dickens. The words were written in an Old English style and it was a little hard to fallow along with but i got the point. It wasn¿t really an exciting book but it was very meaningful and it was written well. I really liked the end because it made me feel happy to know that he wasnt that terrible of a person. If I had to rate this book I wouldn¿t because i didnt really like it, but alot of other people will and it is a fast read but not an easy one. I didnt realy feel like I was in the book but I really felt all the emotions Dickens wanted his readers to capture. If I could change one thing in the book is that i would make it in current day words so that people can read it easier and understand it better. This reminded me of all the other versions and i realized this was the best one because it is the original and the best put.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2005

    wonderful!!!

    I was in the play 'A Christmas Carol',and it is a great storie.Very touching and a great story for all ages!

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