A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

read by Martin Jarvis

Dickens's A Christmas Carol is a true annual: I can't imagine many people taking this short moral tale from the shelves at any time other than Christmas.

One might think the tale has been abused to death - in cartoons, feature films, television adaptations, musicals, even with extraneous characters appended (Mr Magoo's Christmas Carol - if anyone can remember quite who Mr Magoo was), and so on. But the story rarely fails to get its simple message across. Perhaps it should be required reading for all the bankers this Christmas before they pocket their ill- (or, more accurately, un-) earned bonuses.

This Christmas, the CGI-animated film - in 3D - of A Christmas Carol, directed by Robert Zemeckis, with the voice of Jim Carrey, is in the cinemas. Martin Jarvis's reading is released to coincide with the film. Zemeckis has produced one of the most stunning pieces of motion pictures in the history of the cinema, following the story and original illustrations with utmost taste and artistic brilliance: a surprising and refreshing example of the new Disney. Returning from the cinema, it was a great pleasure to hear Martin Jarvis reading the story in this 2-CD package. Dickens' descriptions and dialogue are masterly, and Martin Jarvis has the perfect repertoire of voices for Dickens and for A Christmas Carol in particular.

The enduring popularity of the tale is fully vindicated in this gloriously spirited (no pun intended) production.

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