Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Mr. Dickens and His Carol

Mr. Dickens and His Carol

A Novel

Samantha Silva

Flatiron Books

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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 historical detail from Charles Dickens’ life, and clever winks to his work, Samantha Silva's Mr. Dickens and His Carol is an irresistible new take on a cherished classic.

Charles Dickens is not feeling the Christmas spirit. His newest book is an utter flop, the critics have turned against him, relatives near and far hound him for money. While his wife plans a lavish holiday party for their ever-expanding family and circle of friends, Dickens has visions of the poor house. But when his publishers try to blackmail him into writing a Christmas book to save them all from financial ruin, he refuses. And a serious bout of writer’s block sets in.

Frazzled and filled with self-doubt, Dickens seeks solace in his great palace of thinking, the city of London itself. On one of his long night walks, in a once-beloved square, he meets the mysterious Eleanor Lovejoy, who might be just the muse he needs. As Dickens’ deadlines close in, Eleanor propels him on a Scrooge-like journey that tests everything he believes about generosity, friendship, ambition, and love. The story he writes will change Christmas forever.

EXCERPT

1


On that unseasonably warm November day at One Devonshire Terrace, Christmas was not in his head at all.

His cravat was loose, top button of his waistcoat undone, study windows flung open as far as they’d go. Chestnut curls bobbed...

Reviews

Praise for Mr. Dickens and His Carol

Mr. Dickens and His Carol is 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

Mr. Dickens and His Carol is a novel of pure charm and humor, a terrific holiday tale. Samantha Silva had me haunting those dark streets alongside her inspired Dickens.”
—Jess Walter, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Beautiful Ruins

“In this exceptional work uncovering the grime and glitter of 19th-century London, readers will find another framework from which to examine their hearts before Christmas.”
BookPage

“Funny, clever, and touching, with a surprise ending that is a perfect Dickensian fit…Just in time for this holiday season.”
Reader’s Corner

“This clever, original debut brilliantly imagines the writing of A Christmas Carol…Wildly moving, chock full of Dickensian atmosphere and written in a style as rich as a Victorian Christmas dinner.”
The Daily Mail

“Wonderfully Dickensian…With the wit and sprightly tone of a classic storyteller, Silva presents a heartwarming tale of friendship and renewal that’s imbued with the true Christmas spirit.”
Booklist

“On its way to becoming a classic not unlike its subject matter.”
Bustle

“Witty…Endearing.”
Columbus Dispatch

“Atmospheric…Entertaining…Brings yuletide London to life.”
Missourian

“Silva has imagined an intriguing and atmospheric backstory to the quintessential holiday tale and its most revered author.”
Library Journal

“No writer in the history of literature so embodies the season of Christmas as Charles Dickens, a man who was alive to his fingertips from start to finish. Among his finest moments was surely when he wrote and published his mythic tale of Scrooge, Jacob Marley, and Tiny Tim, changing hearts and minds, then and now. Samantha Silva brings the great man, the Inimitable, to sizzling life in Mr. Dickens and His Carol. This man who brimmed with Christmases past, present, and future walks onto the public stage again in these pages, takes a bow, and enjoys the ringing applause.”
—Jay Parini, author of The Last Station and The Passages of H.M.

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Samantha Silva

Samantha Silva is a writer and screenwriter based in Idaho. Mr. Dickens and His Carol is her debut novel.

Samantha Silva

Glenn Landberg

Samantha Silva