Did you know that when Dickens wrote this little novella in 1843 as part of his ‘Christmas Series’, it changed all our Christmases? Traditional practices were going out of fashion at the time, and the book revived them. Groaning boards of turkey and iced cake, presents, dancing and mistletoe were all saved for our enjoyment…or not! At the same time it was a clear comment on early Victorian society, as when the Ghost of Christmas Present reveals two children saying; “This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased.”
For me, the book was a tradition in itself. Every year, as my children grew, I’d read it, over four or five nights, ending the story with Scrooge’s transformation on Xmas Eve. Heady days!