Current Reading: Christmas Eve Reading

I’ve been reading various things, as always, and I’ll get back to those next week, but for today I decided to share with you some Christmas Eve reading. I read these, and other Christmas-themed books, each year at this time.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. This edition published by Stewart, Tabori and Chang, New York. You all know the story. This edition, published in 1997, contains the complete text and nearly eighty illustrations in both color and black and white by Everett Shinn, first attached to this work in 1938. It’s a pleasure to read this every year.

The Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore. Originally published as “Account of A Visit From St. Nicholas” in 1823. This edition, published in 2006, is illustrated by Gennady Spirin. Of course it’s a wonderful poem, one I’ve heard since I was very young, but it’s the illustrations that make this edition special to me.

So how about you? Do you have a favorite holiday book?
What else have you been reading?

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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14 Responses to Current Reading: Christmas Eve Reading

  1. tracybham says:

    I just put up a post about reading A Christmas Carol. I think I will start a tradition of reading it every Christmas. It certainly put me in the Christmas mood.

    I also finished, the day before, Salamander by J. Robert Janes. It is set in World War II In Occupied France, around Christmas. But it does not have a Christmas-sy theme.

    • That would be a great tradition for you. I have these two books in the box with some of our Christmas decorations, the ones we take out first, so they come out and get read as soon as we start decorating. The movie version with Alister Sim was on TCM last night.

  2. I read A CHRISTMAS CAROL a long time ago. While I have a Marvel comic of the same, I’d love to read an illustrated volume someday. Merry Christmas, Richard!

  3. Steve Oerkfitz says:

    Don’t care much for Christmas stories with the exception of Donald Westlake’s Snackles which I should read again. I’m probably the only person on the planet who hates It’s a Wonderful Life. Right now I am reading Whiplash River by Lou Berney. Just finished The House Next Door by Anne Rivers Siddons. I liked it a lot. Before that I reread Stations of the Tide by Michael Swanwick. One of my favorite SF novels.

    • It’s a Wonderful Life isn’t my favorite Christmas movie, Steve, I’d much rather watch Christmas in Connecticut with Barbara Stanwick, or A Christmas Story, or many others. I have Stanwick’s The Dog Said Bow-Wow here, unread.

  4. Jerry House says:

    Favorite Christmas reading? I’d have to go with the ghost stories of M.R. James or Robertson Davies. Both would read a new story to their students on Christmas Eve. I’m not sure when the Christmas Eve ghost story became a tradition but it’s great fun.

    As for my reading this week I started with Neil Gaiman’s ART MATTERS, a small collection of essays which includes his MAKE GOOD ART SPEECH. “William Arden”‘s (Dennis Lynds The Three Investigators book THE SECRET OF SHARK REEF takes the trio in search of WWII German submarine. UNKNOWN DANGER is one of the last books published by SF great Murray Leinster. It’s one of three tie-in he wrote for the television show LAND OF GIANTS. It’s basically a puzzle story, but Leinster’s hands were tied due to the show’s silly premise. Finally, I read two of Basil Copper’s Mike Faraday mysteries, THE CALIGARI COMPLEX and NO FLOWERS FOR THE GENERAL. Both were interesting but Mike Faraday can be taken in only small pieces.

    Have a fantastic holiday, Rick!

    • Thank you, Jerry, and the same to you and your whole family! I wasn’t aware of the ghost story at Christmas was a tradition, that’s new to me. I wish those Three Investigators books were easily available, such as at the library.

  5. A CHRISTMAS RAILWAY MYSTERY by one of your favorite writers, Edward Marston, just arrived from AMAZON. Like Steve, I’m a fan of Micheal Swanwick, too, I have a couple of his books on my Read Real Soon stack. Although it’s not a Christmas book, I am reading the latest volume in THE INVISIBLE LIBRARY series. A review will be up on my blog soon.

    • Any packages arriving this time of year, not containing perishables, are put under the tree to be opened tomorrow, whether they were intended as gifts or not.

      I do like Marston, and have a couple of his Railroad Detective novels yet unread. Need to put one on my TBR so I’ll get to it. I look forward to that review.

  6. Jeff Meyerson says:

    It’s funny that Jerry mentioned M.R. James. We were in the supermarket a couple of days ago buying and sending home $100 worth of groceries – I can’t drive or carry heavy stuff with this broken shoulder – and got to talking with this guy with s great Scots accent behind us. Turns out he’s an artist and professor from the Highlands who has been teaching art at CUNY for nearly 20 years. Jackie asked him how he ended up in Bay Ridge – “I met a woman in San Francisco” – and in discussing books, as one does, he expressed a liking for James’s tales. If you’re interested in seeing some of his work, Google Ian Charles Scott.

    Anyway, still not able to concentrate on reading much. Reading another early O. Henry collection – OPTIONS – and I read Margaret Mizushima’s STALKING GROUND, second in her Timber Creek K-9 series set in Colorado. Good, but I liked the first one more. Also reading IN THE GALWAY SILENCE by Ken Bruen, latest in the Jack Taylor series. Normally, I’d race through it in a day, which is further proof of my lack of ability to concentrate.

    • That’s a fascinating conversation, Jeff. Most people are mum in grocery grocery stores.

      Sorry you’re having so much trouble concentrating. Is it the meds, pain, or what? I recently read an anthology with a story by Bruen, and it was one of my least favorite. It may have been the first thing of his I read. Heal! Be well!

      • Jeff Meyerson says:

        It’s always there. Most of the time it isn’t too bad, especially if I don’t move around much. I have a high pain threshold anyway. But it is hard to concentrate. Watching television is easier.

        What happened was, the checker was trying to warn him that we had a delivery order that might take longer- it didn’t, in the end- and he thought it was a new American invention he’d never heard of, a delivery only line. He started chatting in a friendly way and Jackie is naturally friendly.

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