A Christmas Carol | Charles Dickens | Reviewed by Taylah

Sunday, 16 December 2012

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“God bless us, every one!”
As it's Christmas I decided it was the perfect time to review A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Usually I wouldn't have read this book, I've never read a Charles Dickens book before and even thought Christmas is my favourite time of the year, the story of Ebenezer Scrooge never excited me. I read this book as apart of my final year of high school, I've analyzed, highlighted, bent and basically worn in this book like no other. I think it's become one of my most favourite books ever.

Ebenezer Scrooge is an old man. He's cold, he senile and he's tight when it comes to money. It's only when on Christmas Eve Ebenezer is visited by the ghost of his dead business partner, Marley, that he becomes even remotely aware of his hostility. Marley warns him that he will be visited by three ghosts, Ghost of Christmas Past, Present and Yet To Come. It's the visits by these ghosts to Scrooge's past, present and future that Scrooge's eyes are opened to the world of the lower class.

The book itself was written by Dickens in an attempt to convince, or better yet scare, the upper class in the 1800's to be more charitable members of society. The gothic theme and the use of ghosts was a smart tactic used by Dickens. Religion was highly present when A Christmas Carol was written, the threat of a lifetime haunted by ghosts and an afterlife of suffering was a terrifying thought.
An even more smarter tactic was the fact that only members of high society could afford books and the education to read, thus allowing Dickens' to pinpoint his audience.

I really enjoyed the story. The charitable message paired with the spirit of Christmas made for a heart warming tale. I think it's important to recognize the message being told in A Christmas Carol not just during the holidays, but the whole year round. The book can be quite difficult to read in some parts, written in Standard English, it's hard to form a mental picture in some parts. Saying that, I really enjoyed the eloquent language used by Dickens throughout the story.

Recommended For:
As I've never read a book like this, I can't really compare it to other books. If you like moral tales, mild ghost stories or Christmas themes you may enjoy this book. The writing to me almost seems like a more mature version of Lemony Snicketts.

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