A Christmas Carol Readalong

dickens in decemberI can’t remember how many times I’ve seen A Christmas Carol performed on the stage and how many movie adaptations and cartoon versions I’ve watched. For some reason I have always loved this story. Yet I never sat down and actually read the original. Fortunately the novel is on my 1001 list and Caroline and Delia hosted a group read of the novel for their Dickens in December event. Here are the questions provided to help generate our discussion. Please note that there may be spoilers in case you are not familiar with the work.

Did you like it?

Absolutely. It was like seeing an old friend after years of being apart. As a child our family saw this performed on the stage as part of our holiday tradition. It’s been years since I sat in a theater and enjoyed a production. I may have to reintroduce this tradition.

Which was your favorite scene?

I love when Marley visits Scrooge. When Scrooge is staring at Marley but is explaining that he’s a figment of Scrooge’s imagination due to stomach issues. For some reason this always cracks me up. “You may be an undigested bit of beef, a blot of mustard, a crumb of cheese, a fragment of an underdone potato. There’s more of gravy than of grave about you, whatever you are!” If I was facing a ghost I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be arguing with the ghost and telling him he didn’t exist. I’m not that brave. Or is it stupidity.

Which was your least favorite scene?

I’m not sure that I have one. The one that makes me cringe the most is when Scrooge is asking if the prisons are still functioning and stating that if poor people died they would “decrease the surplus population.”  For me I just don’t understand how someone can be so unfeeling towards others.

Which spirit and his stories did you find the most interesting?

The last spirit has always intrigued me since he doesn’t say all that much. I find his silence creepy.

Was there a character you wish you knew more about?

Fezziwig simply because I love the name!

How did you like the end?

The end always makes me smile. Okay, it may be a sappy story, but come on people, that’s part of the holidays.

Did you think it was believable?

I do believe! I find if the writing is strong, I can be swept up in any type of story. That’s the magic of reading. You learn to believe in the unbelievable and feel like a kid again.

Do you know anyone like Scrooge?

Yes I do, but I reserve the right not to say who

Did he deserve to be saved?

Of course! I know I’m not a perfect person and I’ve made many mistakes. And I’ll probably make many more. To think that a person can’t be saved is a dreadful thought.

To see the other responses please visit this page. Happy holidays!

About TBM

TB Markinson is an American living in England. When she isn’t writing, she’s traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs, or reading. Not necessarily in that order.
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46 Responses to A Christmas Carol Readalong

  1. This is going to sound completely silly after such a nice review but have you seen the Muppets version–it is seriously good and funny

  2. dadirri7 says:

    hi there tbm, forgive my sidetracking, but we are just watching The Murder of Roger Ackroyd on TV, fascinating, but quite different to the book … which i read after you recommended it, then we read it for book club, and acted out the parts in character at our christmas meeting … great fun, everyone enjoyed it, which is quite unusual in our book club! so thanks to you, and your book reading … happy christmas!

    • TBM says:

      Oh I’m so glad you enjoyed it and it sounds like you really got into it! I haven’t seen the adaptation but I’ll look for it. I’m curious to see how different it is. Happy holidays!!!!

  3. Pingback: Dickens in December – A Christmas Carol – Readalong « Beauty is a Sleeping Cat

  4. Caroline says:

    That scene with Scrooge telling Marley he might just be the effect of indigestion is really funny. I know people lie that who will rationalize everything that they cannot completely explain.
    I would love to see this on stgae. That must have been great.
    The readalong makes me aware that in English speaking countries A Christmas Carol is really part of the Christmas tradition. I couldn’t think of anything comparable in German or French.
    Re-reading it I see that the Disney movie is quite close to the book. If only it wasn’t so loud and nervous.

    • TBM says:

      The stage production we saw was fabulous. So many fond memories. I wonder why there isn’t a story in German for French that is comparable to A Christmas Carol and the holiday tradition.

      • Caroline says:

        The onlyone I could think of is Andersen’s Little Matchstick Girl. But it isn’t as much of a tradition as a Christmas carol and it is Swedish. but people read and watch it at Christmas in the German speaking countries.

      • TBM says:

        I haven’t heard of it. I’ll look into it for next year.

  5. Definitely a blot of mustard. 🙂 Seriously now, can that cause indigestion?
    It’s good when you try to see the good side in people and believe they can be saved. That’s what I like the most about the story, that Scrooge was given a second chance and that he took it and changed his ways.

    • TBM says:

      How much is in a blot of mustard 🙂 Caroline made a good point about Scrooge in her posting–that not only was he mean to those around him, but to himself as well. I think that’s one of the reasons why I cheer for him–he had such a miserable life and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. A life without love, friends, and happiness sounds horrendous to me.

  6. niasunset says:

    Beautiful…. as always. Thank you dear TBM, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, love, nia

  7. Northern Narratives says:

    Definitely one of my Christmas favorites. Merry Christmas 🙂

  8. Trish says:

    I’m jumping into the fun a little late but I was so excited to see this readalong! Like you the third spirit has always intrigued me the most. There is something so foreboding about his quiet fingerpointing. I’m surprised at how many of the participants haven’t read this one–glad I wasn’t alone. It’s one that I think I’ll read from year to year, though!

    • TBM says:

      I thought I would be alone to. I know the story so well, but never read it. So many listened to the Tim Curry audiobook. I may try to track that one down next year. Happy holidays!

  9. petit4chocolatier says:

    One of my favorites and I have seen so many different versions and cannot decide which one I like the most. But I do remember the first time I read it and seen it. I loved it then like I love it now! True classic!!

  10. What a wonderful interview! I’m sold! I have seen so many different versions of this story on stage and screen, but now I think I might have to read the book. Merry Christmas, and God bless us , every one!

  11. Carol says:

    This is actually one of the few of Dickens I’ve read and I really enjoyed it. I love the Muppets version, too, and the one Disney did a couple of years ago with Jim Carrey.

  12. lynnsbooks says:

    It would be really awful if we couldn’t be redeemed and our mistakes were set in stone. Everybody makes mistakes after all!
    I like the point you make about the last spirit – he is really creepy and I think it’s because he doesn’t have any lines – just points forebodingly!! I did really enjoy the scene in the pawn shop – it’s just perfectly horrible!
    Lynn 😀

  13. Jo Bryant says:

    we just had a reading of it in town [which i missed sadly]

  14. I played Mrs. Fezziwig in a school production. What a hoot! I loved wearing hooped skirts and playing hostess along side of Mr. F. Ha!

  15. Sharita says:

    I love a Christmas Carol. Have read it and seen many adaptions.
    I’m curious, can you tell something more about your person. Are you a man, married, do you have children, age group? I ask this so that I can imagine an image of the person I’m reading.

    • TBM says:

      A Christmas Carol has always been one of my favorites. As for me, I’m a female in my late 30s. I live in London with my better half, dog, and cat. All of us are from the US.

      • Sharita says:

        I had read a few posts of you, and always imagined you were a man, don’t know why.
        I love your project. A few years ago I started 101 in 1000 days. that’s a project where I would finish 101 things I wanted to experience or do in 1000 days. I gonna start for the second time soon.

      • TBM says:

        That sounds fun and I wish you luck!!!

  16. Rachel says:

    🙂 I really like the ending too…even though it’s silly. It’s just so funny! And I listened to the Tim Curry narration – he did such a good job of portraying Scrooge’s loony joy at the end.

    my review of A Christmas Carol

  17. Margaret Sullivan says:

    Merry Christmas…dear friends 🙂

  18. IsobelandCat says:

    Did you see Victoria Wood’s Christmas special tonight? I enjoyed the spoofs of Christmas Carol.

  19. Seen it so many times and I love it each time. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and an inspirational 2013 TBM! 🙂

  20. Novroz says:

    I love your answers. The part where you say that it’s like meeting an old friend makes me smile.
    I agree with you that anyone deserved to be saved.

  21. Pingback: Dickens in December – Wrap up « Beauty is a Sleeping Cat

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