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Jacob T. Marley

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  2,828 ratings  ·  809 reviews
"Marley was dead to begin with . . ."
These chillingly familiar words begin the classic Christmas tale of remorse and redemption in A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Now R. William Bennett rewinds the story and focuses the spotlight on Scrooge's miserly business partner, Jacob T. Marley, who was allowed to return as a ghost to warn Scrooge away from his ill-fated path.
Hardcover, 202 pages
Published October 12th 2011 by Shadow Mountain (first published January 1st 2011)
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4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,828 ratings  ·  809 reviews

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Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, audiobooks
🎄🎄🎄 Merry Christmas! Everyone! 🎄🎄🎄

4 stars for this Christmas story with a new perspective ... Jacob T Marley is Ebenezer Scrooge’s guide in the classic Christmas storyA Christmas Carol. This story gives you a look at both Jacob and Ebenezer‘s backstory leading up to the classic tale... why is Jacob now so determined to change Scrooge‘s perspective and ultimately his life?

You also get a glimpse again of the visits of the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future..... this time you get to s
Dec 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: christmas
A fun story to read at Christmas.
Told from the perspective of Jacob Marley, this is his story. Although there are some liberties taken with the original story, Marley's story is one of warmth, forgiveness and kindness; just like Dickens' A Christmas Carol.
This book hasn't the depth and feeling of Dickens but is an interesting background on Marley.
I particularly enjoyed it from when Marley engages with Scrooge and the ghosts visit. The last couple of chapters are interesting. I won't think coinc
Mary Lou
Feb 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful book to place on the shelf next to Dickens' A Christmas Carol. The author does a good job of lifting the secondary character of Jacob Marley out of the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and rounds it out, filling in background on just who Marley was, what type of family he came from, and how his own choices created the creature that appears to Scrooge on Christmas Eve. I like how the author describes the character of Marley: "For the corrupt character of Jacob Thelonius Marley was not m ...more
Peter Monn
Dec 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Geniously written. A wonderful counterpart to A Christmas Carol. My full review will be on my booktube channel at
Lubinka Dimitrova
A nice take on a beloved story. At times it did seem a bit forced, so that some facts could fit into the original story. Although it's not as touching as Dickens' initial book, it's still quite heart-warming, and I did enjoy the opportunity to read something christmas-y these days. Once again, the narrator, Simon Vance, took a book that could otherwise be rather indifferent and transformed it into something magical.
Robin Hatcher
Dec 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
What a fun sequel to A Christmas Carol! This was a perfect holiday season read. I thoroughly enjoyed the narrator of the audiobook, and I love the way the author stayed true to the original story while giving a unique view into Jacob Marley, both before and after his death. If you are a stickler for sound Christian theology, don't look to this novel. But if you read it for the sheer joy of creativity, I think you'll be pleased. Merry Christmas! 4.5 stars
Oct 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my most favorite books of all time, and definitely a treasured Christmas tradition!
3 1/2 stars

This story focuses on the minor, but important, character out of A Christmas Carol, Jacob Marley. Or Jacob T. Marley as the title says - who knew his middle name was Thelonious?

Bennett has written a backstory of sorts, showing us how Scrooge and Marley became partners, how Marley influenced Scrooge and what led up to Marley visiting Ebenezer in his bedroom the night he tells of the three spirits who will visit Scrooge. We see that Marley out-scrooged Scrooge in his lack of caring for
Dec 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
All my reviews can be found at:
I don’t know if this was because this story was new to me but it affected me more than A Christmas Carol. We all know about Scrooge but what about Marley? What was his life like? Why did Scrooge get a chance at redemption and Marley did not? Or did he? We find out about Marley and how he and Scrooge met. They are perfect for each other. They are two peas in a pod.

We get to experience part of A Christmas Carol through this
Feb 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
“If we do nothing but to remove a rock upon which someone might have tripped, though they may never know we did it, is this not our cause, our reason for life?”

This was a very satisfying companion to Dicken's Christmas Carol. 4.5 stars
Helga Cohen
Dec 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another wonderful holiday story to read this time of the year. In this book a sort of prequel about Marley the ghost, it begins, "Marley was dead." So the journey focuses on his early life and his life as a business partner with Ebenezer Scrooge. Marley is seen as a miserly and mean man who influenced Scrooge to be the person he became. It is an interesting view of Marley and how he sought to redeem himself and save Scrooge from the evil person he was. It explains why he was so evil and what he ...more
Dec 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was a well done prequel. I thorough enjoyed it. The message enhanced the original inspirations included in A Christmas Carol. Highly recommend.
Skylar Phelps
Dec 06, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5 Stars
I liked this one. It was thought provoking and added some good insight and depth to the beloved story.
I do feel that the author took a little too much liberty with some aspects but the story shines just as brightly from a second perspective.
Dec 07, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, paranormal
This wasn't so much a prequel or even a retelling of A Christmas Carol as it was a line-by-line rehashing from a different point of view. It wasn't terrible, but it didn't add enough to be worth reading over the original.

I guess some things can't be improved on.

2 stars.
Mandy White
Dec 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
A Christmas Carol from Jacob Marleys point of view... something a bit different. Wasn't sure to begin with but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Great narrator too
Nicci Hartland
Dec 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If you love The Christmas Carol, you will love this book. It tells the tale from the point of view of Jacob T. Marley.

It delves into his life, how he met Scrooge and how he made Scrooge the way he was. It's about redemption and teaching people forgiveness.

Definitely a great companion to the original classic, great to read aloud, read alone or hear from audiobooks.
Rating: I fully enjoyed it 🤗. Updated Rating upon re-read, I added 1 star
Emotions: Satisfied, content, curious, glad.
Recommended if you like: Dicken's A Christmas Carol, retellings, villian's backstories, prequels, Christmas centric stories.

I love Dicken's A Christmas Carol, (the story, not so much the actual novel), and around this time in the year I like to watch an adaptation; so far I've watched a lot of them, it's one of my favorite things to do on the holidays. When I found out about this
❤Marie Gentilcore
A Christmas Carol is my all time favorite Christmas story so I may be a little biased, but I really enjoyed this book about Jacob Thelonious Marley. It was well told and enhanced Dickens' classic.
Drew Graham
Oct 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: me
Jacob Thelonius Marley is born under humble circumstances, but has great potential to do good in the world. As he grows older and pride begins to infect his previously noble heart, a chain of events is set in motion that leads to his eventual meeting with Ebenezer Scrooge and their business partnership, his own miserable demise, and his subsequent ghostly appearance to Scrooge on that fateful Christmas Eve.

So I read this after finishing (and not very much liking) Tom Mula's Jacob Marley's Christ
Oct 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Find the enhanced version of this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....

If there is a truly tragic character in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, it is Jacob Marley. Ebenezer Scrooge gets a second chance at redemption but Marley is condemned to shoulder the weight of his transgressions for all eternity. Not a whole lot of justice in that is there? Now apparently, I’m not the only who feels this is a serious offense. Author R. William Bennett also concluded Dickens treat
Dec 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read this at the recommendation of the great Brad Rees. I loved this book. It’s a powerful reminder of the impact we have one another - both redemptive and otherwise.
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Marley was dead, to begin with..." The opening line to the famous Dickens classic about Ebenezer Scrooge. This story is Marley's. He was Scrooge's partner and the first spirit to contact him on that Christmas Eve night. He had a profound impression on Scrooge that helped make him into the man everyone knew as a mean old miser. He too had his story of redemption that he hoped to pass to Scrooge before it was too late; before Ebenezer too was dead. The story begins as a pre-sequel to Dickens' fam ...more
Donna Backshall
This was a wonderful little novel. All the haters reviewing Jacob T. Marley claiming it's merely a poor fanfic effort or a lame derivative of A Christmas Carol can kiss my fully Christmas-spirited ass.

In true form to pair with A Christmas Carol, Jacob Thelonius Marley's life story gives us the background and perspective to understand why Marley was present for and invested in Scrooge's spirit visits that one fateful Christmas Eve of lore. This is a wonderfully no-nonsense, yet heart-filled, stor
Feb 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Almost anyone!
This was an amazing book! I absolutely loved it! It adds so much more to the original "A Christmas Carol" to give more of a plot, connections, and how Scrooge and Marley got to be who they were in Dickens' book. It tells of before and after the visit of Marley and the 3 ghosts to Scrooge. Reading it with my family, I began to cry several times. It tells of second chances, of family, forgiveness, the gospel, love, divine watch-care, guardian angels. It was so beautiful, hopeful, joyful. It touche ...more
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classic, fiction, wisdom
I've decided that one of my criteria for giving a book five stars is whether or not I would read it again. I would definitely read Jacob T. Marley again. Bennett takes the character Jacob Marley from the story of Scrooge and gives us a sort of prequel to Mr. Scrooge, or rather, the making of Mr. Scrooge. I enjoyed the writing, I enjoyed the insights, the characters and the wisdom. I learned many of the same things that I learn from Scrooge, but whereas A Christmas Story makes you think introspec ...more
Mortisha Cassavetes
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2018
Such creative and unique. I love the Christmas Carol and I just knew I would love this as well and I did. The story follows Jacob T. Marley, his youth and as he grew and met Scrooge. How he inspired Scrooge so negatively. I do not want to go into the story more as to not spoil it but I highly recommend it to everyone especially during the holiday season. I read this book for the TisTheSeasonAThon 2018.
Pree Bee
Nov 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Written in the style of Dickens, this book is rich. Oh the irony!
It really explores the historic obsession of man with material and wealth and what it does to the soul. This got dark, and I wish it was more cringing for Jacob.
Dec 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebooks, read-2011
"There are three realisations mankind can experience that might give them cause for change. First, remorse for what is gone but might have been in the past. Second, a shocking awareness of where they are in the present. Finally, fear for what will be in the future, should their paths not change. These three missions make up our cause"

It's hard for a lot of us to imagine Christmas without some iteration of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, be it re-reading the novella itself or singing along to
Dec 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
"Jacob realized that he was no more than an entry in Scrooge's ledger-in an account that was now being closed. "
"What a wretched man," Marley thought. "Whatever in the world made him?"
Whether it was seconds or minutes, Marley did not know, but he paused so completely he thought his heart had stopped beating.
"I did," were his own words that came to him.
"I did, I made Ebenezer Scrooge."

These are some of Jacob T. Marley's final thoughts as he lays on his death bed in front of Scrooge. While we all
Lucy Pollard-Gott
Nov 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
In this convincingly written pastiche of Charles Dickens’ classic novella A Christmas Carol, author R. William Bennett includes a Preface addressing his readers, whom he assumes are well acquainted with Dickens’ account of Scrooge’s visitations by three spirits on Christmas Eve, his repentance, and his chance to make amends and change his life. And why not? It is one of the most famous stories in the world, repeated, read, and watched on film by millions every year. But Bennett wants to know mor ...more
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“Remorse is a heavy burden, but in its weight, it has great power to awaken men's souls.” 6 likes
“If we do nothing but to remove a rock upon which someone might have tripped, though they may never know we did it, is this not our cause, our reason for life?” 4 likes
More quotes…