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Great Expectations Paperback – November 29, 2014
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"I think I was 10. I was having a party. The weather was good, so my mother was keeping us all outside, so we'd break nothing and get sick on the grass. One of my friends handed me a present. He looked a bit embarrassed. I knew what it was before I opened it. A book... I thanked him and tore off the paper. Great Expectations. I eventually read it. Pip in the graveyard, the escaped convict - more than 40 years later, I'm still reading Dickens" -- Roddy Doyle --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
About the Author
Charles Dickens (1812–1870) is considered one of the English language's greatest writers. His works include The Adventures of Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, Great Expectations, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, and A Tale of Two Cities. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Ebenezer Scrooge is a cranky banker who wants nothing to do Christmas. He won’t give his employee, Bob Cratchit, time off so that Cratchit can spend the holiday with his family—including his ailing son Tiny Tim. He chases off charities. He won’t even accept an invitation to attend the Christmas party thrown by his nephew, Fred. Then one night, he’s visited by the ghost of his recently deceased business partner—Jacob Marley. Marley, who was as cheap and crotchety as Scrooge, is burdened with horrifying chains, and the ghost warns Scrooge that if the old man doesn’t change his ways, he—too—will end up wandering through eternity in a similar set of chains. Before disappearing, Marley tells Scrooge to expect visits from three more ghosts.
The three subsequent visits with the famous ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future don’t require much discussion. First of all, the names of the ghosts (e.g. Ghost of Christmas Past) are self-explanatory. Secondly, this story is iconic in pop culture and it’s been remade in every medium in every way imaginable from modern adaptations (e.g. “Scrooged”) to “Simpsons” episodes. At any rate, the first ghost shows Scrooge that there was a time when he wasn’t such a curmudgeon while reminding him that he once had an employer, the beloved Mr. Fezziwig, who was a much better to Scrooge than Scrooge is to Bob Cratchit. The second ghost takes him to see the Cratchits and their meager but blissful Christmas festivities and then to his Nephew’s party as well. The final apparition, The Ghost of Christmas Future, takes Scrooge to the end of his own line. In the wake of the four ghost visits, Scrooge makes some changes to avoid the fate he’s been shown.
The Puffin Classics version that I read has an introduction by Anthony Horowitz and some artwork. That said, I don’t think it matters much what version one reads. It’s about the story.
I’d highly recommend this book for all readers.
Can't imagine not reading this at Christmas time. I have several versions of this classic on DVD and watch them every year but reading "A Christmas Carol" is still the best.
This year I have a Kindle Fire HDX and using Whispersync for the narration of it was another plus. A chance to try it out for free. The person narrating had a voice that has the emotion and tone for each character, that fit Scrooge and the rest of them to a "T".
The illustrations throughout the book were fun to look at. Not common to find illustrations in books today unless they are children stories.
Lots of great quotes come from this story but the most famous is BAH! HUMBUG! followed by:
"God bless Us, Every One!"
When our kids were young we would read this aloud over 5 nights leading up to Christmas. At first the 19th century language may sound stilted; but stick with it and within a few minutes you'll pick up Dickens' wonderful cadence.
If you have an evening to spare, I urge you to read it as well so it might have a similar effect in you
Don't be intimidated. This is a book everyone should read at least once.