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Mr. Dickens and His Carol

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  11,905 ratings  ·  2,302 reviews

A charming, comic, and ultimately poignant story about the creation of the most famous Christmas tale ever written. It’s as foggy and haunted and redemptive as the original; it’s all heart, and I read it in a couple of ebullient, Christmassy gulps.” —Anthony Doerr, #1 New York Times bestselling author of All The Light We Cannot See

Laced with humor, rich historic

Kindle Edition, 276 pages
Published October 31st 2017 by Flatiron Books
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Samantha Silva Lots of irony here. "The Man Who Invented Christmas" is based on a nonfiction book published in 2008 -- the real story of how Dickens' book came to be…moreLots of irony here. "The Man Who Invented Christmas" is based on a nonfiction book published in 2008 -- the real story of how Dickens' book came to be. "Mr. Dickens and His Carol" is an imagined story (based on true circumstances of Dickens' life) that I wrote as a screenplay about 15 years ago, optioned four different times to four different film companies, had a few near misses with the big screen -- which was when I opted to adapt it into a novel. Funny that both projects are coming into the world at the same moment, but there's never enough Dickens to go around! A merry Christmas to all!(less)
LadyCalico Before! The Christmas Carol is a wonderful little novella of only about 100 pages, and really something that no book lover should miss. You would be d…moreBefore! The Christmas Carol is a wonderful little novella of only about 100 pages, and really something that no book lover should miss. You would be doing yourself a favor to spend a few hours reading one of the best stories ever written, just on the basis of its own merits. Yeah, there are a lot of movie versions, but why not go with the real Dickens--can't hurt! (less)

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Average rating 3.79  · 
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 ·  11,905 ratings  ·  2,302 reviews

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Diane S ☔
Dec 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A sentimental and oh so charming read, but if one cannot be sentimental during this holiday season, when can one? Also another book coincidence since I saw this book after reading my friend Laura's review, and grabbed it. Last year I listened to the original Christmas Carol, while wrapping gifts. Seemed only fitting to read this one during this holiday, Christmas, which has come once again.

I enjoyed this book very much. The writing, the descriptions, the character of Dickens himself, all very we
Dec 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"I am not haunted by ghosts, but by the monsters of ignorance, poverty, want! Not useless phantoms that frighten people into… inactivity. I do not abide such nonsense."

A Christmas Carol is one of my treasured favorites of the season. Whether it is the little book itself, a screen adaptation, or a live performance, it never fails to entertain and delight. When I came across the title of this book, Mr. Dickens and His Carol, I was naturally curious. At the same time, I was a little skeptical, worr
I have a difficult time reading some works of historical fiction that are based on real characters. My worst experiences are always when an author chooses to use scandal, innuendo, rumours, and gossip as though they are fact. So, I was a bit worried about how this book and I would get along.

Much to my delight, this novel is a tender and loving tribute to Charles Dickens as Ms Silva tells her own story about how “A Christmas Carol” came to be. In her author’s note, she mentions that she appreciat
Jo (The Book Geek)
I had rather high hopes for this one, but I'm left feeling quite disappointed with it. I love "A Christmas Carol" which is written by Dickens, and by some of the reviews I read on here, I thought I might be in for a treat. This book really failed to take off.

I didn't appreciate the fact that Dickens was portrayed as some kind of womaniser, who was infatuated with a lady called Eleanor, who wore a purple cloak, and he seems to be constantly looking for her around every corner. That sounds like a
4.5 Stars.

Did you know....A CHRISTMAS CAROL was born out of financial necessity"....that Charles Dicken's was only 31 when he wrote the novel? (I thought him to be an old man.)

As for Bah Humbug....not this delightful work of fiction. A Scrooge type is here though complete with a humbug attitude and many other familiar plot connections and characters from A CHRISTMAS CAROL.

MR. DICKENS AND HIS CAROL is an imaginative and historically atmospheric debut that gives the reader a fictional glance of th

Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
4.5 Stars

I own this on kindle but I want the hardback now! I listened to the audio through the library and loved the narration!

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Dec 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
At this time of year, many will partake in some form of Charles Dickens’ classic Christmas tale. However, the story behind its creation is equally as intriguing, as I came to learn through Samantha Silva and her story, Mr. Dickens and His Carol. While fictitious, Silva recounts a vivid story that offers up a number of wonderful treats about how a popular author rose to a publisher’s challenge and penned a story that has touched the lives of millions every Christmas. Recommended to those with a l ...more
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 / 5 glowing, Christmasy Stars ✨

I read this book as a buddy read with Katie from @texasreadergirl - Goodreads.com/texasreadergirl

My reviews and other random thoughts can also be seen at




Apparently this is the debut novel for Samantha Silva, but I couldn't tell. The prose is beautiful, and this was such a great, magical Christmas book. I pretty much read it in one sitt
Oct 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Christmas Carol by Dickens has been my favorite book ever since the first time I read the story as a child. I re-read it every year and watch every movie version from Alastair Sim to the Muppets. :) When I heard about this book, I knew I had to read it. :) I'm glad I did!

First of all, don't confuse this book with the book or movie "The Man Who Invented Christmas''....that is another story by another author (Les Standiford). Standiford's book is non-fiction, telling the tale of how A Christmas
Dec 27, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
“He had suffered a frenzy of false feeling, a grasping for his past instead of his present.”

Even reading it in the height of the Christmas season, the first 100 pages of this text took me a while. It just did not grab me. “Mr. Dickens and His Carol” is a little too wordy and can get tiresome. It is a consistent problem throughout the text. I have not read enough of Mr. Dickens to know if the author (Samantha Silva) is copying (and honoring) Mr. Dickens’ style, or if it is her own.
Chapter 37 is p
Stephen Robert Collins
Charles Dickens was big family man he was very popular but he wasn't all that people knew .Dickens was an utter cad. He through his wife out & lived with Misstras a lot like his best friend Wilkie Collins who had two mistress & a wife.
I have read Martin Chuzzlewit I did not think it was that bad but it was a flop.
I read all but two of his books I always thought Domby & Son it was boring .
This how he created The best novella of all time Christmas Carole.
His books were not popular after he died &
MissBecka Gee
Nope. Nope. Nope.

Interesting idea, but the execution was lackluster at best.
Kudos to Euan Morton for doing a great job narrating with what he was given.
The fact that he was narrating was what drew me in.
That and the awesome cover.
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Art imitates life imitates art.
Katie Ziegler (Life Between Words)
Loved. Loved so much. It made me feel ALL the nostalgic, sentimental Christmas feels in all the best ways; in the same ways that A Christmas Carol itself is sentimental, this book is sentimental. It plays with all the same themes, even similar elements. As if while Charles Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol his life paralleled the story itself. But it never felt derivative, just inspired. I loved it. And also, just as a side note, I really loved the afterward which I thought added to the richness o ...more
What if Charles Dickens' life was like this? The author, with her impressive research and unlimited imagination, created the life of Dickens while he wrote A Christmas Carol out of financial necessity at the age of 31. He already had six children and a wife who loved to go big or go home to Scotland. (That was surely a modern take on marriage life in 1843 when the book was written by Dickens).

It is also debatable that married men would play with their children at the time, or show excessive emot
Susan Z
Dec 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christmas
4.5 stars

What a fun creative idea for a story. I was transported back to the 1800s as the author wove a tale about how A Christmas Carol came to be, some parts based on facts, some embellished, all fascinating.

This would have been even more enjoyable if I was intimately familiar with Dickens' work and life. I plan to do more research, read some Dickens and reread this book again next year to get the full experience.

A special thank you to Melissa for the recommendation. 😘
Dec 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When Dickens latest story, Martin Chuzzlewit proves to be a massive flop, he is faced with having to write a new story in a matter of weeks - or face the loss of a significant amount of money. With Christmas around the corner, along with the birth of a brand new baby, and his father’s incessant debts landing on his doorstep, presents for his children, as well as the young street beggars who depend upon his charity, there are also new decorations for their annual Christmas party, including the ne ...more
A Christmas Carol is one of my favorite works of fiction and I read it every Christmas along with the original Christmas story. It is said that it was written out of financial imperative, but whatever necessitated its writing, it is obvious that Dickens knew what Christmas ought to mean and brought that feeling to life in his fine tale.

Which brings us to this lovely little debut novel by Samantha Silva. Silva caught the spirit of The Christmas Carol and put the same vivacity into her own imagini
Connie G
Generations of people have loved reading Charles Dickens' classic Christmas story because it shows us the spirit of giving to others. Even characters like Ebenezer Scrooge may have had events in their past that led to their cold-hearted ways, and there is always time for second chances in life. Samantha Silva has used her knowledge of Dickens' life to imagine what inspired him to write his most famous novel.

Dickens was in debt since his previous novel had not sold well. His wife was spending mon
Jason Koivu
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, holidays
(I received this ARC in return for an honest review.)

A perfect Christmas read!

This re-imaging of Dickens' struggles and triumph during a time when his renown was at an ebb read almost like a biography. It introduces his family, publishers, agent, literary contemporaries, and many influential figures in his life. Having recently read a biography of Dickens, I recognized most of the people represented here, and I will say that Samantha Silva did a great job of bringing the dead to life.

The story
Dec 05, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
All right, I did my book club duty & read this book.

First, I'll say that quite a few people might enjoy this book. I can see a certain appeal in it. If you want an easy, Christmas-y book with a Victorian London setting, this might fill a night or two by a roaring fire with a hot drink. (Well, except for those of you in the Southern hemisphere.) The writing level itself is okay. I even had a tear or two forming by the end. (But, I'll cry for sappy commercials or jingles, so take that comment fwiw
3.5 stars

Charles Dickens’ latest book is not selling well. The publisher is struggling financially. They suggest for Dickens to write a short story, a Christmas book, something festive, a good winter’s tale. But none of it sounds good to Dickens, who struggles with this idea of a Christmas book. He himself is going through a writer’s block. Thus, he turns to the streets of London, which he loves and which gave him inspiration for all his writings. But nothing comes.

Meanwhile, we get to know Dick
To sum it up in one word: Magical. A magical first novel by Samantha Silva. I feel like I've stepped out of a Christmas snow globe where Bumble's Toy Shop and Furnival's Inn are real and snowflakes are softly swirling around me. I didn't want the story to end.

At times, the writing was quite lovely:

Christmas had been hiding in the streets all along. The Dickens children marched behind their father in obedient single file, but their eyes were bright and round as new pennies. ... The air smelle
I was not charmed by this novel as I expected to be. The writing is lovely. The prose is excellent, and I loved the author’s descriptions of London. What bothered me was the infatuation that Dickens has of a woman that wasn’t his wife. It went beyond an author’s interest in a person due to creating characters, and just knocked my enjoyment down a peg or two. Many of my friends have this five stars and glowing reviews, so my opinion is definitely the minority. I do still recommend this book for a ...more
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is my all time favourite Christmas book/story! To be taken back to its creation and meet its author in such a personal way was like having a dream come true! To be there when Charles Dickens read it for the first time- all I can say is WOW!

I applaud the author for how well she captured the time, the place and the people. But most especially for how she portrayed Charles Dickens.

I loved this book and I know that this is a book I will return to on future Christ
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This life is to short to read mediocre books and novels!!
An here with "Mr. Dickens and His Carol" by Samantha Silva we have indeed a great and beautiful written debut novel..
Let me tell you, if you love Dickens, then this is it!!!

Samantha Silva knows how to web a spell in her narration that binds and enchants the reader.
She resurrects and evoke in her novel Dickens world and characters..
They are described so mightily that they will be hunting you in your imagination and even dreams long after ha
Janelle Janson
MR. DICKENS AND HIS CAROL by Samantha Silva - Thank you so much to Flatiron for providing my free copy - all opinions are my own.

I’m not one to read Christmas books but I love historical fiction so I desperately wanted to read this. It’s a charming debut novel with beautiful prose and vivid descriptions. I could see the town and picture the people in it. The author did a fantastic job showing the complex and wonderful character of Charles Dickens - he’s flawed but very endearing.

I love how the
Madeleine (Top Shelf Text)
Note: Top Shelf Text was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own!

I picked up this origin tale of Charles Dickens’ The Christmas Carol as part of my 2017 holiday reading list. This book moved a little too slowly for me, and for the majority of it I felt Dickens to be unlikable and shallow — unable to stand up to the people in his life and immediately chasing after a new “muse” when his wife leaves him. In the end, the character
Stephanie Anze
Dec 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
“What magic there was all around him. Words were inadequate, but all he had. He didn't know where they came from or why, but it was how we told one another what the world was and might be. Who we were, and might become. It was the only magic he had. Everything else was faith.”

Charles Dickens is a celebrate author in his city. His monthly serial story of Martin Chuzzlewit is drawing less attention and hence, generating less money. His publishers tell Dickens that he needs to write a Christmas sto
Bam cooks the books ;-)
*3.5 stars. For those of us who have enjoyed Dickens' A Christmas Carol many times throughout the years, this is 'meant as a playful reimagining of how the second most beloved Christmas story in the world came to be.' Beautiful descriptions bring the reader into the midst of that era, a society with both poverty, hunger and want and lavish, extravagant lifestyles. (Sounds similar to the modern era, doesn't it?)

Charles Dickens has been the darling boy of the reading public and his publishers unt
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Samantha Silva is an author and screenwriter based in Idaho. Her debut novel, Mr. Dickens and His Carol, was published in 2017 by Flatiron Books/Macmillan. Love and Fury: A Novel of Mary Wollstonecraft will be published in May 2021. Over her career, Silva's sold film projects to Paramount, Universal, and New Line Cinema. She directed a film adaptation of her short story, The Big Burn, which won th ...more

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