Concerned with the plight of children living in poverty, Charles Dickens wrote a short novella, titled A Christmas Carol. First published in 1843, this story tells of a miserly old man visited by three ghosts. A Christmas Carol remains popular — having never been out of print —– and has been adapted many times to film, stage, opera, and other media.
The tale begins on a "cold, bleak, biting" Christmas Eve exactly seven years after the death of Scrooge’s business partner, Jacob Marley, Scrooge, an old miser, is established within the first stave as "a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner!" He hates Christmas, calling it "humbug"; he refuses his nephew Fred's Christmas dinner invitation, and rudely turns away two gentlemen who seek a donation from him to provide a Christmas dinner for the poor. His only "Christmas gift" is allowing his overworked, underpaid clerk, Bob Cratchit, Christmas Day off with pay – which he does only to keep with social custom, Scrooge, considering it "a poor excuse for picking a man's pocket every 25th of December!"
This led to one of the best-selling, most-told Christmas stories of all time.
Many other stories followed by other authors through history:
The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Anderson
The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry
A Letter from Santa Claus by Mark Twain
Papa Panov’s Special Christmas by Leo Tolstoy
Just to name a few. The website http://osr.org/christmas/20-famous-christmas-stories/ lists 20 of the most popular.
My family prefers The Night Before Christmas. Which stories does your family enjoy this time of year?
Multi-published and Best-Selling author Cynthia Hickey had three cozy mysteries and two novellas published through Barbour Publishing. Her first mystery, Fudge-Laced Felonies, won first place in the inspirational category of the Great Expectations contest in 2007. Her third cozy, Chocolate-Covered Crime, received a four-star review from Romantic Times. All three cozies have been re-released as ebooks through the MacGregor Literary Agency, along with a new cozy series, all of which stay in the top 50 of Amazon’s ebooks for their genre. She has several historical romances releasing in 2013, 2014, 2015 through Harlequin’s Heartsong Presents, and has sold more than 260,000 copies of her works. She is active on FB, twitter, and Goodreads. She lives in Arizona with her husband, one of their seven children, two dogs and two cats. She has five grandchildren who keep her busy and tell everyone they know that “Nana is a writer”. Visit her website at www.cynthiahickey.com