Weekend Reads: “The Man Who Invented Christmas”

The Man Who Invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens's a Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived Our Holiday SpiritsThe Man Who Invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens’s a Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived Our Holiday Spirits by Les Standiford
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Note: this edition includes the full text of A Christmas Carol, which I have read so many times that I can quote it verbatim. If you have never read it, this book is the perfect edition for you. You’ll get the biographical information and the tale to which it refers all in one place.

So.

In mid-life, Charles Dickens was very concerned about his finances. So, he conceived of a Christmas tale that drew on his concerns about income inequality and the importance of charity. Having grown up very poor indeed (his father was in debtors’ prison twice), Dickens keenly felt the need to help the less fortunate.

This biography talks about the struggles of getting the book published (Dickens eventually published it himself), his personal life during the time, and how A Christmas Carol was the rising tide that helped float better sales of his subsequent serialized novels.

This is the book on which the popular film was based; highly recommended for those interested in both the literature and mores of the period.

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5 thoughts on “Weekend Reads: “The Man Who Invented Christmas”

  1. Just finished this- it is the book club i run’s book club book for this month. An easy read. I liked it- and it has motivated me to start reading David Copperfield.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I am not a big fiction reader- the only Dickens I’ve read is A Christmas Carol- so I thought I’d give Copperfield a go- loving it so far.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I read the book in anticipation of the movie coming out and was initially confused by the fact that the book is non-fiction and the the movie fiction. Let’s call the movie “inspired” by the book. I loved both though–the book for its biography of Dickens and examination of his times, and the movie for its story about how The Christmas Carol came to be. It may be a bit historically inaccurate, but it’s a fun time. I just watched it for the second time the other night!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We watched it for the first time last night and found it absolutely charming. The book was definitely far more biographical than the film, which I would call “magical realism.” We loved Jonathan Pryce as John Dickens.

      Like

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