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Mr. Dickens and His Carol

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  6,460 ratings  ·  1,406 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)

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Average rating 3.81  · 
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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
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
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
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

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 / 5 glowing, Christmasy Stars ✨

I read this book as a buddy read with Katie from @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
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 &
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Art imitates life imitates art.
Dec 27, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
“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
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
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.
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
~ A rather bookish
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
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
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
Nov 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Dickens / Victorian readers looking for a feel-good Christmas tale
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
Amy Yingling
This was a really cute book and is great for Christmas. The story itself I would rate 3 stars, but the twist in the story near the end and the vivid descriptions of Dickens London definitely pushed it up a star. Forced to write a new story, this one with a Christmas theme, Dickens becomes a Scrooge, as the story progresses you notice more and more interweaving of what is happening to Dickens in this novel and the events and characters you find within "The Christmas Carol". A feel-good read just ...more
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
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
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
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
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
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 ...more
Dickens is one of my very favorites, and this reimagining of the circumstances of his writing A Christmas Carol is lovely and a perfect December read.

Questions are answered as to how a certain name choice or situation suggested by real life circumstances that might have influenced Dickens' choices are ingeniously provided by the author.

It has all the bells and ribbons, holly trimmed. Family reconciliation, complete with sticky fingers, AND a needful Tiny Tim scooped up.

3.5 stars rounded up. . .
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
Jan 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christmas-reads
"Bah! Humbug!"

Indeed, Mr. Dickens. Ha! I was so hoping she would slip that line into the book somewhere. This was SUCH a great read. If you have a Christmas shelf, add this right away.

The vernacular and setting are just whimsical and nostalgic. I can't get over the ridiculously awesome names that Dickens gave his characters, and the author plays on this in the best possible way in Mr. Dickens and his Carol. The story is life imitating art imitating life. In short, Dicken's story parallels Scroo
Bah Humbug

I know that this book received a lot of 5 stars and 4stars ratings but I'm afraid that I can only give it 2 stars. This novel didn't click with me at all.
Dickens was facing losing everything because his last book, Martin Chuzzlewit, was a complete flop. His publishers told him he had to write a successful Christmas book to save his career.
He suddenly feels that everyone is after his money and his surly behavior plus his getting in contact with an old girlfriend in a search to find his
Nov 16, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
I had high hopes for this one. I didn’t expect profound or literary excellence, but I hoped it would be a delicious, Christmasy peek at the actual creation of one of my beloved favorite stories by one of my favorite authors. Nope. Way more fantasy and with a few (very few) historical details sprinkled in. There were some good inclusions of the local color and details of mid 19th century Victorian London, but not enough to save this. The story did start accurately with Dickens under real pressure ...more
Dec 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an interesting novel, weaving a story around the writing of, “A Christmas Carol.” Most books set around Christmas are, usually, disappointing. So I was thrilled to find this, which has more than a nod to the original in the way Dickens himself is disappointed, grumpy and at odds with the world and who finds himself again, through writing a Christmas story.

It was, though, a book that Dickens did not want to write. However, “Martin Chuzzlewit,” is not doing as well as expected, Dickens fin
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Samantha Silva is an author and screenwriter based in Idaho. Mr. Dickens and His Carol is her debut novel. Over her career she's sold projects to Paramount, Universal, New Line Cinema, and TNT. A film adaptation of her short story, The Big Burn, won the 1 Potato Short Screenplay Competition at the 2017 Sun Valley Film Festival. Silva will direct, her first time at the helm. A graduate of Johns Hop ...more

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