The Very Name of Christmas


A continuing story of the classic tale A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickons, this book takes place some years ahead in the future of Mr. Tim Cratchet's life, perhaps better known as tiny Tim the son of Bob Cratchet.  Now an adult and having thrived by the patronage of the ever generous Mr. Ebenezer Scrooge, he is a resident doctor at The Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital in London.  After the death of old Ebenezer he is dedicated to furthering his work of helping the children who are living in poverty and are in much need. So much so that he begins down a personal destructive path of emotional turmoil and sacrifices his happiness with the love of his life, Julianne Nevins. He alienates those close to him and embarks on a journey when visited by a host of ghosts not wholly unfamiliar.

The reader is vividly transported to living in London during the winter of 1843. The author captures the essence of the original classic story and the times in which it was written with social issues that are brought to attention regarding the poor. With a few too many similarities to the original, the story did feel a little repetitious. The author also seems to portray the message that being overly dedicated to the poor is as much a crime as that of overt greed, and Tim seems to be punished because of it. This comes across as somewhat extreme and unfair. Still, Tim is a very heartfelt character and the author created a nice look at the possibilities to how his life could have played out.

Margaret Faria