A Christmas Carol (Sterling Unabridged Classics Series)

A Christmas Carol (Sterling Unabridged Classics Series)

4.5 36
by Charles Dickens, Scott McKowen
     
 

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Beloved in Christmases past, and sure to remain a favorite into Christmases of the future, Dickens’ popular holiday tale is the perfect Christmas present. The uplifting tale follows the mysterious and magical events that transform the miserly, miserable Ebenezer Scrooge into “as good a friend, as good a master, and as good a man” as ever lived.

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Overview

Beloved in Christmases past, and sure to remain a favorite into Christmases of the future, Dickens’ popular holiday tale is the perfect Christmas present. The uplifting tale follows the mysterious and magical events that transform the miserly, miserable Ebenezer Scrooge into “as good a friend, as good a master, and as good a man” as ever lived.

 

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 3 Up–Dickens’s cautionary tale of an embittered, stingy old man learning to be a happier, more giving person thanks to the intervention of four ghosts has long been fodder for holiday collections. From its stark opening spread (“MARLEY WAS DEAD”) to the final one with its much more cheerful winter scene, this year’s version, illustrated in Helquist’s darkly comic style, is one of the best. Some of that credit must go to Greenhut, who provided the abridgment. Sacrificing none of Dickens’s rich language, this retelling reads beautifully. The artist uses watercolor, pencil, and pastel to create cinematic artwork that contains amusing details; additionally, there are a number of pen-and-ink vignettes that help set the scenes. A winning combination of sparkling prose and exciting art.–Mara Alpert, Los Angeles Public Library

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781402776328
Publisher:
Sterling
Publication date:
10/06/2009
Series:
Sterling Unabridged Classics
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
96
Sales rank:
493,519
File size:
1 MB
Age Range:
10 - 17 Years

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MARLEY was dead: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. The register of his burial was signed by the clergyman, the clerk, the undertaker, and the chief mourner. Scrooge signed it: and Scrooge's name was good upon 'Change, for anything he chose to put his hand to. Old Marley was as dead as a door-nail.

Mind! I don't mean to say that I know, of my own knowledge, what there is particularly dead about a door-nail. I might have been inclined, myself, to regard a coffin-nail as the deadest piece of ironmongery in the trade. But the wisdom of our ancestors is in the simile; and my unhallowed hands shall not disturb it, or the Country's done for. You will therefore permit me to repeat, emphatically, that Marley was as dead as a door-nail.

Scrooge knew he was dead? Of course he did. How could it be otherwise? Scrooge and he were partners for I don't know how many years. Scrooge was his sole executor, his sole administrator, his sole assign, his sole residuary legatee, his sole friend and sole mourner. And even Scrooge was not so dreadfully cut up by the sad event, but that he was an excellent man of business on the very day of the funeral, and solemnised it with an undoubted bargain.

The mention of Marley's funeral brings me back to the point I started from. There is no doubt that Marley was dead. This must be distinctly understood, or nothing wonderful can come of the story I am going to relate. If we were not perfectly convinced that Hamlet's Father died before the play began, there would be nothing more remarkable in his taking a stroll at night, in an easterly wind, upon his own ramparts, than there would be in any other middle-aged gentlemanrashly turning out after dark in a breezy spot—say Saint Paul's Churchyard for instance—literally to astonish his son's weak mind.

Scrooge never painted out Old Marley's name. There it stood, years afterwards, above the warehouse door: Scrooge and Marley. The firm was known as Scrooge and Marley. Sometimes people new to the business called Scrooge Scrooge, and sometimes Marley, but he answered to both names: it was all the same to him.

Oh! but he was a tight-fisted hand at the grindstone, Scrooge! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster. The cold within him froze his old features, nipped his pointed nose, shrivelled his cheek, stiffened his gait; made his eyes red, his thin lips blue; and spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice. A frosty rime was on his head, and on his eyebrows, and his wiry chin. He carried his own low temperature always about with him; he iced his office in the dog-days; and didn't thaw it one degree at Christmas.

External heat and cold had little influence on Scrooge. No warmth could warm, nor wintry weather chill him. No wind that blew was bitterer than he, no falling snow was more intent upon its purpose, no pelting rain less open to entreaty. Foul weather didn't know where to have him. The heaviest rain, and snow, and hail, and sleet, could boast of the advantage over him in only one respect. They often 'came down' handsomely, and Scrooge never did.

Nobody ever stopped him in the street to say, with gladsome looks, 'My dear Scrooge, how are you? when will you come to see me?' No beggars implored him to bestow a trifle, no children asked him what it was 'oclock, no man or woman ever once in all his life inquired the way to such and such a place, of Scrooge. Even the blindmen's dogs appeared to know him; and when they saw him coming on, would tug their owners into doorways and up courts; and then would wag their tails as though they said, 'no eye at all is better than an evil eye, dark master!'

But what did Scrooge care? It was the very thing he liked. To edge his way along the crowded paths of life, warning all human sympathy to keep its distance, was what the knowing ones call 'nuts' to Scrooge.

Once upon a time—of all the good days in the year, on Christmas Eve—old Scrooge sat busy in his counting-house. It was cold, bleak, biting weather: foggy withal: and he could hear the people in the court outside, go wheezing up and down, beating their hands upon their breasts, and stamping their feet upon the pavement-stones to warm them. The city clocks had only just gone three, but it was quite dark already: it had not been light all day: and candles were flaring in the windows of the neighbouring offices, like ruddy smears upon the palpable brown air. The fog came pouring in at every chink and keyhole, and was so dense without, that although the court was of the narrowest, the houses opposite were mere phantoms. To see the dingy cloud come drooping down, obscuring everything, one might have thought that Nature lived hard by, and was brewing on a large scale.

The door of Scrooge's counting-house was open that he might keep his eye upon his clerk, who in a dismal little cell beyond, a sort of tank, was copying letters. Scrooge had a very small fire, but the clerk's fire was so very much smaller that it looked like one coal. But he couldn't replenish it, for Scrooge kept the coal-box in his own room; and so surely as the clerk came in with the shovel, the master predicted that it would be necessary for them to part. Wherefore the clerk put on his white comforter, and tried to warm himself at the candle; in which effort, not being a man of a strong imagination, he failed.

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Meet the Author

Charles Dickens was born in a little house in Landport, Portsea, England, on February 7, 1812. The second of eight children, he grew up in a family frequently beset by financial insecurity. At age eleven, Dickens was taken out of school and sent to work in London backing warehouse, where his job was to paste labels on bottles for six shillings a week. His father John Dickens, was a warmhearted but improvident man. When he was condemned the Marshela Prison for unpaid debts, he unwisely agreed that Charles should stay in lodgings and continue working while the rest of the family joined him in jail. This three-month separation caused Charles much pain; his experiences as a child alone in a huge city–cold, isolated with barely enough to eat–haunted him for the rest of his life.

When the family fortunes improved, Charles went back to school, after which he became an office boy, a freelance reporter and finally an author. With Pickwick Papers (1836-7) he achieved immediate fame; in a few years he was easily the post popular and respected writer of his time. It has been estimated that one out of every ten persons in Victorian England was a Dickens reader. Oliver Twist (1837), Nicholas Nickleby (1838-9) and The Old Curiosity Shop (1840-41) were huge successes. Martin Chuzzlewit (1843-4) was less so, but Dickens followed it with his unforgettable, A Christmas Carol (1843), Bleak House (1852-3), Hard Times (1854) and Little Dorrit (1855-7) reveal his deepening concern for the injustices of British Society. A Tale of Two Cities (1859), Great Expectations (1860-1) and OurMutual Friend (1864-5) complete his major works.

Dickens’s marriage to Catherine Hoggarth produced ten children but ended in separation in 1858. In that year he began a series of exhausting public readings; his health gradually declined. After putting in a full day’s work at his home at Gads Hill, Kent on June 8, 1870, Dickens suffered a stroke, and he died the following day.

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Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
February 7, 1812
Date of Death:
June 18, 1870
Place of Birth:
Portsmouth, England
Place of Death:
Gad's Hill, Kent, England
Education:
Home-schooling; attended Dame School at Chatham briefly and Wellington

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A Christmas Carol (Sterling Unabridged Classics Series) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
bookin-it More than 1 year ago
After reading this, you are no longer left to wonder why this tale has been retold coutless times through many mediums throughout the years. It is haunting in its eerie descriptions of London after dark. It is chilling in that we can all sympathize with Scrooge to one degree or another. And while haunting and chilling, it still sprinkles you with a generous amount of Christmas warmth throughout. If you're simply looking to find the best version on film, then I kid you not in recommending The Muppet's version. It's the closest to the book I've ever seen.
LoveSanta More than 1 year ago
Another Christmas present for my grandson who has really found the love of books and is beginning to read the classics. I thought this was a good one to start with and I hope he enjoys it as much as I did when I read it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a book I first read in Jr. High. I have seen the story in a movie, play, and on TV but it was a wonderful experience to read the book again as it was written by Charles Dickens and I recommend it to every one young and old I also recommend "Little Women"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am not a big classics reader. I'm more into teen drama and romance, but I LOVE this book and it is definitely a good selection, whether you're into classics or not! :)
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He nosed her Tansy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When she made it to the bank she looked for the others. Setting Twistedkit down safely she called for OutCast.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Is taken there.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Looks around
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The dens have caught fire!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kk. Gtgtb bbl.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
IDEA ONE.<br> Organize it like the United States. We can have a leader (or three) of whom make the final decisions and help with suggestions. They stay in power for life or until they choose to retire. The Clan can then elect and vote for a new leader to take the retiring or dead leader's place. Then there can be about ten to fifteen (not recommrnding more because of how much we argue as is) who have to think of the good for all and help create any rules and try to fix things, even help decide who to raid. They can be rechosen once a month so that no one has that power for too long. And they ought to give recommendations for who they think would be a good replacement and just have a vote. Then there can be three to judge (must be impartial to each and every case) those who have been wronged or something and try to like keep order when someone is being accused of something and dole out fair punishments. They can be changed once every three months for ease. The leaders can choose who to replace them with.<p> IDEA TWO.<br> Organize it like the United Kingdom. There can be a leader (or three) and their mate (not needed to assume the role, but recommended) to help a set of ten to fifteen (same reason as above) create rules and choose who to raid. Instead of a few judges, the leaders must hear each case and dole out fair compensation and/or punishments. The leaders stay for life, unless they choose to retire, in which both the him/her and their mate are forced to step down. One of the party can be elected to take their place. The party can be realigned every month.
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The chrismas carol is a very cool nice book. I think scrooge was acting like a not very nice person. But in the end when all the spirits saw him, he really becomes a nice guy. A cristmas carol is a very good book that should be read by many great readers for many years.
Bags More than 1 year ago
Why do you even need a review? This is Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol! I LOVE this book, it's a must have for everyone. I really truely understand its popularity, especially after so many year.
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