Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Review: A Christmas Carol Special Edition by Charles Dickens with Stephen Skelton

Title: A Christmas Carol Special Edition

Author: Charles Dickens with Stephen Skelton

Rating: 1/2

Who Should Read it? This is a great Christmas story for the whole family. Because of the added studies at the end of each question, it is also great for a Bible Study Group (I gave one to my sister's bible study group this year) or a Christian family.

What I Have to Say: Somehow, in my 27 years of life, I had NEVER read a Christmas Carol. I've seen about a bagazillion adaptations, so, for me at least, the not reading it thing is just weird. Now that I have finally read it, it far surpassed my expectations. As with most things, the book is just better than all of the adaptations. Dickens's writing is so pure and innocent; he makes you feel that, with a little push in the right direction, anyone can be good. This book is a classic for a reason, and all the hype surrounding it is well-deserved. I would have loved to see Dickens himself do a reading.
Reading it with Stephen Skelton's insight made the reading experience even more satisfying. Every time there was something I didn't understand (or I thought I understood but actually didn't), Skelton was there with an explanation. I felt like I was really able to get righ into Dickens's head and understand the true meaning of his words.
Each chapter was followed by a study guide separated into 4 sections filled with insightful questions. I really enjoyed thinking through some of my answers to these questions, as they helped me to feel truly connected to the story and understand how Dickens's message can apply to how we celebrate Christmas and to me in my daily life. The first two questions in each section, while applying to adults as well, were written so as to be applicable to and easily understood by children. Because of this, it was a great book for parents to read with their children or for a bible study group, as the questions could easily lead to lively conversation.
I'd also like to point out that, while spiritual, I am not a Christian, and yet I still found the study sections thought-provoking and enjoyable.
A superb read!

Summary (from Since its publication in 1843, the tale of a miserly old man and the ghosts who visit him has been bringing the true spirit of Christmas into hearts and homes. Whether you've read the story a thousand times or have only seen the movie, A Christmas Carol Special Edition will enrich your enjoyment of this holiday favorite with:

•The complete text of the Charles Dickens classic.
•Annotations offering interesting insight into the story's biblical allusions, the author's faith, and compelling Christian themes throughout.
•Discussion questions designed to engage and promote dialogue among readers of all ages on such subjects as regret, repentance, and redemption.
•A list of related resources to enhance your study.
Enjoy A Christmas Carol Special Edition in your home, study group, book group, or Advent celebration and learn how to say with Scrooge:

"I will honour Christmas in my heart,
and try to keep it all the year."

Disclosure: This book was sent to me by FSB Media to give an honest review.


Liz @ Cleverly Inked said...

way off topic but I love your blog unique

vvb32 reads said...

i know the story and wouldn't have considered reading this. but your review has made me interested.
btw: you've just been awarded

Jessica said...

Great review! I read A Christmas Carol recently and since many of the adaptations I've seen are so similar, I really regret not reading this book a lot sooner.

D Swizzle said...

Hey there! If you could shoot me an email about the Big Fat Nerd Tour? I need to know if you got it or not...:)

Sheila (Bookjourney) said...

I want to read this - I think it looks beautiful! I love this book!

Tales of Whimsy said...

I SO can't wait to read this. This sounds like an awesome copy.

Felicity Grace Terry said...

A (ahum) few years older than you, I haven't read this book either though after reading your review, it's something I shall have to put right.
Anyway, A Happy New Year to you and yours, I hope it's filled with lots of love and laughter.

Jennay and Luke the Pup said...

I haven't read this one, but I have always wanted to. Maybe this year I'll get it for Christmas : )

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