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A Christmas Carol

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By Charles Dickens

With so many wonderful movie and stage versions of Dickens’ holiday masterpiece, I sometimes forget to relish the printed word. This year I pulled out my worn paperback version of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and loved revisiting it. As a child, my family would read the novel out loud, going around the room as each child and parent alike took their turn trying not to trip over Dickens’ amazing language.

Here’s just a snippet of Dickens’ description of Ebenezer Scrooge.

External heat and cold had little influence on Scrooge. No warmth could warm, no 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.

I know there are so many warm Christmas novels to share with your family, and I love many myself, but if I had to choose a favorite – it would be Dickens. I picture Patrick Stewart delivering the famous Scrooge line when talking about the poor and needy, “If they would rather die then they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.”

Gather your family around and read aloud from A Christmas Carol. Let the language pour over you. Let the characters inspire you. Let the lesson of renewal, of rebirth, of making mankind our business fill your heart. Let Tiny Tim inspire your children with “God bless us everyone.”

Enjoy your holiday reading of whatever variety, and thank you for sharing your love of books with me on the Book Beat. For KSL Newsradio, I’m Amanda Dickson.

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