Archive for December 6th, 2018

Take Ten: Christmas Ghosts

Although we’re used to ghost stories around Halloween, in the past the tradition was to tell stories of spectres and spirits at Christmastime. Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol re-popularized that tradition in the Victorian Era, but other than that, we’ve let the idea of Christmas ghosts slide a little. Bring the “spirit” back with one of these:

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The Beautiful Child – Emma Tennant

  • Presents a story based on the unfinished work of Henry James about a couple who enlist an artist to paint a portrait of a child they never had.

A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

  • A miser learns the true meaning of Christmas when three ghostly visitors review his past and foretell his future. (If you haven’t read this one in awhile, or have only seen the TV shows/movies, pick it up – you won’t regret it! Also features five other Christmas stories/sketches.)

Christmas Days: 12 Stories and 12 Feasts for 12 Days – Jeanette Winterson

  • A collection of stories written annually at Christmas includes tales of trees with magical powers, a tinsel baby that talks, flying dogs, philosophical fairies, and a haunted house.

Christmas Ghosts: An Anthology – edited by Seon Manley and Gogo Lewis

  • Eleven classic Christmas tales, including a shortened version of A Christmas Carol that Dickens used during his public readings.

The Christmas Pearl – Dorothea Benton Frank

  • The matriarch of a family of belligerent idiots, Theodora finds her efforts at bringing them together for a South Carolina Christmas reunion have gone badly awry, until a very special someone uses Gullah magic and common sense to bring about a miracle.

Christmas Spirits

  • Lynn Kurland, Casey Claybourne, Elizabeth Bevarly, and Jenny Lykins present a collection of romantic holiday ghost stories.

Daniel Plainway, or The Holiday Haunting of the Moosepath League – Van Reid

  • During the Christmas holidays in nineteenth-century Maine, Tobias Walton and his fellow companions in the Moosepath League become caught up in the lives of colorful associates of country lawyer Daniel Plainway.

The Ghost of Christmas Present – Scott Abbott

  • Patrick Guthrie, a widowed public school drama teacher, will do whatever he can to make the money for a life-saving operation his ten-year-old son needs–including begging on the streets of New York.

The Haunted Tea-Cosy: A Dispirited and Distasteful Diversion for Christmas – Edward Gorey

  • Provides an off-beat look at Christmas and the holiday season in a new version of Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol.

Merry Merry Ghost – Carolyn G. Hart

  • When a determined heir moves to block a wealthy woman’s attempt to include her newly discovered grandson in her will, it is up to good-intentioned ghost Bailey Ruth Raeburn to protect a little boy, foil a murderer, and save Christmas.

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