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The Chimes (Christmas Books)

3.13  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,157 Ratings  ·  506 Reviews
"The Chimes" is Charles Dickens 1844 novella that concerns the disillusionment of Toby "Trotty" Veck, a poor working-class man. When Trotty has lost his faith in Humanity and believes that his poverty is the result of his unworthiness he is visited on New Year's Eve by spirits to help restore his faith and show him that nobody is born evil, but rather that crime and povert ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1844)
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Tessa Eger Look it up on Amazon. You will see what it is being sold for from various retailers. I find, today, that it starts at $10.00 and has one collectible…moreLook it up on Amazon. You will see what it is being sold for from various retailers. I find, today, that it starts at $10.00 and has one collectible asking $50.00(less)
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Community Reviews

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Iris  Pereyra
The Chimes

A few years ago, Audible released a new audio version of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and gave it for free to its members.

I had read the book and watched several movie adaptations of this holiday classic, but had never heard it on audio. And while I enjoyed listening, I didn’t quite click with the narrator.
Last week, I received an email from Audible offering another freebie, this time of The Chimes.

I immediately felt in love with the narrator, Richard Armitage, who I thought
...more
Jean
The Chimes, or to give it its full title, The Chimes, a Goblin Story of Some Bells That Rang an Old Year Out and a New Year In, is the second Christmas book by Charles Dickens. It was written in 1844, a year after his phenomenally successful "A Christmas Carol", and continued the burgeoning tradition of an annual Christmas book in what he called the "Carol philosophy". He was to write five of these short novels, all of which have a strong social and moral message. He then discontinued them in fa ...more
Jake
Dec 13, 2009 Jake rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
If A Christmas Carol is about making restitution after sins of commission, The Chimes is about the potential cost of sins of omission. That is what I got from this year's reading of a Dicken's holiday story. I read one every Christmas to get into the holiday spirit. (See also: The Haunted Man ).

I'm not a huge fan of Dickens, because I find reading him laborious. Yet, that is really my only gripe with him. I love the characters, settings and situations he created. I just wish he hadn't been so
...more
Duane
If you're looking to add some "merry" to your Christmas reading you might want to look elsewhere. Dickens's delivers his holiday messages in bitter doses. Alrhough you will find his ability to create interesting stories and memorable characters intact, it's still depressing. This one's along the lines of A Christmas Carol but not as good.
Lyn
Dec 19, 2015 Lyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the 1840s Charles Dickens wrote five Christmas related stories that promulgated his social and moral messages of his time.

The first and still most famous and recognized, A Christmas Carol has become a staple of holidays entertainment. People worldwide are familiar with the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and how he got his groove back.

Less recognizable, but as every bit as enjoyable are the other four, The Chimes being the second, published a year after Scrooge. Toby "Trotty" Veck is a poor ticket-
...more
Steve
Story: 5 stars
Narration: 2 stars

Most of us who have read, seen, and heard A Christmas Carol are unaware as to how shocking a piece of literature it was when it was originally published. Familiarity has softened its blow to the point that the story is viewed with a jaundiced eye, its effectiveness long worn off. The Chimes is even more brutal in its portrayal of 1840s England.

The Chimes is the second of five in Charles Dickens's "Christmas Books". Written in 1844, it was published a year after A
...more
Mpauli
Dec 08, 2014 Mpauli rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Due to my large tbr, reviews will follow in 2015, but all I can say is that there aren't enough drugs in the world that will help me to understand the second part of the story completely.^^
Tristram
Four Quarters May Not Always Make a Whole

In the autumn of 1844 Dickens was staying in Genoa and working on a second Christmas story which was due to an agreement with his new publishers and with which he wanted to reprise the success of A Christmas Carol. For quite a long time, the prolific author was at a loss about how to begin – maybe because he was working in surroundings unwonted to him – until he finally came up with the idea of writing the story of old and poor Toby Veck, a ticket porter,
...more
Wart Hill
Dec 16, 2015 Wart Hill rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, audio
What is it with Dickens, Christmas, and Ghosts?

and what is it with GR and shitty changes?

important questions, friends. very important.
Barbara
I'd do better reading rather than listening to Dickens. The Victoriam speech can be challenging. Very Dickens with extremes of utter poverty contrasted with the relative prosperity of the middle class.
Katerina
Dec 22, 2015 Katerina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Бедным, но хорошим людям холодно и голодно, потом совсем плохо, а потом хорошо. Рождественский такой мистер Диккенс.
Jenna
Dec 30, 2015 Jenna rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
THIS IS CURRENTLY FREE ON AUDIBLE, READ BY RICHARD ARMITAGE. EARGASM ALERT.

David
Dec 19, 2015 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: porters, poor couples engaged to be married, pompous aldermen
This is one of Dickens' less sentimental Christmas stories. It still has all the morality and heartfelt moral delivery of A Christmas Carol, but it's a darker, gloomier tale that addresses more directly the desperate fate of the poor whom Dickens wrote about most often.

They were old Chimes, trust me. Centuries ago, these Bells had been baptized by bishops: so many centuries ago, that the register of their baptism was lost long, long before the memory of man, and no one knew their names. They had
...more
Tom Brennan
I think this is an excellent companion to A Christmas Carol, which makes sense because it was the next Christmas novella Dickens wrote following that classic tale. The two stories share Dickens' major themes - the welfare of the poor and destitute, and society's apathy toward their plight (or, in the case of The Chimes, the upper class members of society consider themselves great friends of the poor, when they clearly are not). Toby "Trotty" Veck's travels (Dickens always comes up with awesome n ...more
Elizabeth
Oct 21, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, christmas
This is the second of Dickens' three Christmas books. Like the first book in the series, "A Christmas Carol," "The Chimes" takes place during the "Hungry Forties." That would be the 1840's.

The main character, Trotty Veck, is a very poor man who works as a ticket porter on the streets of London. He adores his daughter Meg who is on the verge of marrying her love named Richard. Meg and Richard are going to get married on New Year's Day.

Trotty loves the church chimes and he and Meg feel the chimes
...more
Stacey
Dec 30, 2015 Stacey rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
Not much for me to say about this one. Audible gives their members a freebie at Christmas time and this was it for 2015. It just wasn't for me, I don't think the narrator helped as he just wasn't my cup of tea.
Renee M
Nov 23, 2014 Renee M rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
SPOILERS BELOW!


Overall, I'm disappointed. But I suspect it's because I'm so fond of A Christmas Carol. The language and description here are sumptuous. But the characters have no depth or nuance. And the "blow for the poor" misses the mark. It's too obviously preachy.

In CC, Dickens us more successful because he shows his audience the path to change. He has spirits show Scrooge a bleak future to affect his present. In this, we see a bleak future for no apparent reason. Trotty does not change, no
...more
Emily
Damn you, Dickens! Ooh, okay, that may be a bit strong, but seriously, good grief. Every Christmas, Audible sends out a little gift, usually some one-off Christmas story or another. Last year, it was a version of The Snow Queen, and the year before that it was The Cricket on the Hearth, so I have now read three of Dickens' five Christmas tales. For me, this one has a similar problem to Cricket, which is to say Dickens and I have different ideas of what qualifies for Yuletide subject matter. This ...more
Nick Iuppa
Dec 27, 2015 Nick Iuppa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Chimes

Charles Dickens

Dickens was commissioned, or so I read, to write a series of holiday stories… Novella’s actually. The first one may be one of the best-known tales ever told, A CHRISTMAS CAROL. The second story, which came out a year later, actually celebrates New Years, and it’s called THE CHIMES. In spite of it’s initial success, almost no one these days has ever heard of the book. How come?

There may be several reasons, and the biggest is obvious. It’s certainly overshadowed by one of
...more
Jesse
Dec 31, 2015 Jesse rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Charles Dickens wrote The Chimes in 1844. 1844. Coming up on two hundred years ago. It's pretty amazing that words from nigh on two hundred years ago have such power, even today. By the end, my chest physically hurt, I couldn't breathe, and it quite literally moved me to tears.

A lot of similar lessons from the much more well-known A Christmas Carol, though from the opposite angle...and with even more of an edge to them. At the outset, the narrative mentions being "brought low" ... but even then,
...more
Samantha
Like many other Dickens novels, I felt like I was dragging myself through this book. It felt sort of like trying to read The Professor after enjoying Villette. For everyone other than the 1 person who understands that reference, I mean to say that this book will disappoint if you're looking for another Christmas Carol.

The Chimes has obvious similarities to A Christmas Carol. Occurring on New Year's Eve rather than Christmas Eve, we get a similar eye-opening spiritual visit that causes the protag
...more
Melora
Dec 22, 2015 Melora rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: listened
Similar in theme to A Christmas Carol, but far darker, and with trippy goblins instead of ghosts.There is an even greater emphasis on the particular social concerns of the day, and on the various unsympathetic responses of those living in comfort to those in need than is depicted in The Christmas Carol. In places this becomes rather maudlin and overwrought, and it has far less of the humor and moments of joy which lighten The Christmas Carol. Still, this is a fine reading by Richard Armitage, an ...more
Lorrie
This must have been better than I thought it was since my eyes teared up a couple of times. There was a wonderful age old message in the story, that of loving without constraints. Very nice seasonal message. Reminiscent of "Christmas Story". Thank you Audible.
Toni FGMAMTC
This is more on what the true meaning of the holidays is and just every day being good to others with focus on the poor. The Chimes covers New Years instead of Christmas. I liked it, but I didn't like it as much as A Christmas Carol.
Jimmy
Jan 01, 2013 Jimmy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Chimes is the story for New Year's Day. Dickens followed up his Christmas Carol in his series of Christmas stories with The Chimes, again with a deep moral and message for the society of the Victorian age. The characters are typically Dickensian, with an old porter Trotty Veck as the main character. Trotty learns from the Chimes after a journey with the spirits, that good come come from all men no matter their station and the poor are not destined to be bad. An enjoyable read, maybe rather m ...more
Mahlon
Jan 04, 2016 Mahlon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2015
A horrible story is still a horrible story, even when it's masterfully narrated by Richard Armitage and Audible gives it to you for free.
Allan
Dec 01, 2014 Allan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not a Christmas book in the sense of its predecessor, A Christmas Carol, but a book which features the New Year celebration, and while relevant to the political climate of the day, it has no appeal for the modern reader in getting one into the Christmas spirit. I'll not be rereading. Details of plot etc are included in the Wikipedia entry linked below.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Chimes

Anne
Apr 30, 2010 Anne rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: clean-reads
I love Dickens. I have made it a goal to read all of his works. But I can see why this particular story isn't well known. It's Dickens at his preachiest, and as such the story isn't as well crafted. It's more of a finger-wag than a novella.
Abby
Dec 25, 2015 Abby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If I'm being honest, I have very little recollection of this story. From what I gathered Dickens might be the first author to write his own fan fiction.

The important part of this book, is that I received a free copy of this from Audible. A very Merry Christmas to me! Richard Armitage is the narrator. And his voice can only be described as delicious.

Listening to this book brought thoughts of curling up by the fire with a fine strong man (Perhaps his sexy sword from The Hobbit hanging above the
...more
Chris
Dec 28, 2012 Chris rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Following Dickens's success with A Christmas Carol he started a tradition of releasing a new story each year at Christmas time. His second Christmas story was The Chimes. The book follows an old porter/messenger in London named Trotty Veck. As with Christmas Carol and many of his other works, Dickens has plenty of focus on the social structure of the country. Trotty is a very poor old widower with a single daughter, Meg. At the onset of the book, Meg brings Trotty lunch and announces that she pl ...more
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Charles John Huffam Dickens (7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world's best-known fictional characters and is regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era. His works enjoyed unprecedented popularity during his lifetime, and by the twentieth century critics and scholars had recognised him as a literary genius. His novels and sho ...more
More about Charles Dickens...

Other Books in the Series

Christmas Books (5 books)
  • A Christmas Carol
  • The Cricket on the Hearth
  • The Battle Of Life
  • The Haunted Man

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“A new heart for a New Year, always!” 26 likes
“So may the New Year be a happy one to you, happy to many more whose happiness depends on you!” 12 likes
More quotes…