Synopses & Reviews
Tantor Media presents a collection of some of the most popular Christmas stories read by two award-winning narrators. This special anthology will transport listeners back to the Christmases of their youth, when they first heard these holiday tales. From Henry Van Dyke's classic Christmas blessing, "Keeping Christmas," to Charles Dickens's popular tale of yuletide redemption, "A Christmas Carol," More Favorite Stories of Christmas Past
has something for everyone. Also included is Louisa May Alcott's inspirational "A Christmas Dream, and How It Came True," as well as four other Christmas classics that can be heard and shared year after year.
The classics that can be found in More Favorite Stories of Christmas Past are: "Keeping Christmas" by Henry Van Dyke; "A Christmas Dream, and How It Came True" by Louisa May Alcott; "The Last Dream of the Old Oak" by Hans Christian Andersen; "Christmas at Red Butte" by Lucy Maud Montgomery; "The Little Match Girl" by Hans Christian Andersen; "Rosa's Tale" by Louisa May Alcott; and "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens.
Tantor Media presents seven of the most popular Christmas stories read by two award-winning narrators. From Henry Van Dyke's classic Christmas blessing, "Keeping Christmas," to Charles Dickens's popular tale of yuletide redemption, "A Christmas Carol," More Favorite Stories of Christmas Past has something for everyone.
About the Author
Coming soon... Louisa May Alcott was born in Germantown, Pennsylvania, on November 29, 1832. She and her three sisters—Anna, Elizabeth, and May—were educated by their father, philosopher/ teacher Bronson Alcott, and raised on the practical Christianity of their mother, Abigail May.Louisa spent her childhood in Boston and in Concord, Massachusetts, where her days were enlightened by visits to Ralph Waldo Emerson's library, excursions into nature with Henry David Thoreau, and theatricals in the barn at Hillside. Like her character Jo March from Little Women, young Louisa was a tomboy.For Louisa, writing was an early passion. She had a rich imagination, and often her stories became melodramas that she and her sisters would act out for friends. At age fifteen, troubled by the poverty that plagued her family, she vowed to make something of herself. Confronting a society that offered little opportunity to women seeking employment, Louisa remained determined; whether as a teacher, seamstress, governess, or household servant, for many years Louisa did any work she could find.Louisa's career as an author began with poetry and short stories that appeared in popular magazines. In 1854, when she was twenty-two, her first book, Flower Fables, was published. Another milestone along her literary path was Hospital Sketches, which was based on the letters she had written home from her post as a nurse in Washington, D.C., during the Civil War.When Louisa was thirty-five, her publisher asked her to write a book for girls. Thus, she wrote Little Women, which is based on Louisa and her sisters' coming of age and is set in Civil War New England. Jo March was the first American juvenile heroine to act from her own individuality; a living, breathing person rather than the idealized stereotype that was then prevalent in children's fiction.In all, Louisa published over thirty books and collections of stories. She died on March 6, 1888, only two days after her father. Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen (1805–1875) originally trained as a singer and actor, but he gained fame with his fairy tales, which were not meant merely for children but for adults as well. Andersen frequently used a colloquial style that disguises the sophisticated moral teachings of his tales. Many of Andersen's fairy tales depict characters who gain happiness in life after suffering and enduring conflicts. "The Ugly Duckling" and "The Little Mermaid" are Andersen's most intimate works. A playwright and novelist as well as the author of children's tales, Andersen publications include the novels The Improvisatore and Only a Fiddler, as well as his personal memoirs, The Fairy Tale of My Life. Lucy Maud Montgomery was one of the most famous Canadian writers of the twentieth century. She is best known for her books for young adults, particularly Anne of Green Gables and its six sequels chronicling the adventures of Anne Shirley, a feisty but sentimental orphan who is adopted by elderly foster parents. In her lifetime, Lucy published 20 novels and some 500 short stories and poems. Her writing, rich in imagination and full of lessons in optimism, brought her international fame and remains popular today.Lucy was born on Prince Edward Island, Canada, in 1874. Soon after her mother died (when Lucy was just two), her father remarried and moved away. He left Lucy to be raised by her maternal grandparents in Cavendish. The isolation of this small town combined with the strict discipline of her grandparents led to an unhappy childhood. Lucy was an avid reader and writer at an early age. She published her first poem in a local paper at the age of fifteen. She studied literature at Dalhousie University in Halifax, then returned to Cavendish to take care of her grandmother, worked at a local post office, and became a schoolteacher.While caring for her grandmother, she wrote Anne of Green Gables. Several publishers rejected the book before it was finally accepted, and it became a bestseller. Eventually, it was made into a musical, a television movie, and a television series. Lucy later married a minister and moved to Ontario, where she died in 1942. Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in Portsmouth, England, where his father was a naval pay clerk. When he was five, the family moved to Chatham, near Rochester, another port town. He received some education at a small private school but this was curtailed when his father's fortunes declined.When Dickens was ten, the family moved to Camden Town, and this proved the beginning of a long, difficult period. When he had just turned twelve, Dickens was sent to work for a manufacturer of boot blacking, where for the better part of a year he labored for ten hours a day, an unhappy experience that instilled him with a sense of having been abandoned by his family. Around the same time Dickens's father was jailed for debt in the Marshalsea Prison, where he remained for fourteen weeks. After some additional schooling, Dickens worked as a clerk in a law office and taught himself shorthand; this qualified him to begin working in 1831 as a reporter in the House of Commons, where he became known for the speed with which he took down speeches.By 1833 Dickens was publishing humorous sketches of London life in the Monthly Magazine, which were collected in book form as Sketches by "Boz". These were followed by the publication in installments of the comic adventures that became The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club, whose unprecedented popularity made the twenty-five-year-old author a national figure. In 1836 he married Catherine Hogarth, who would bear him ten children over a period of fifteen years. Dickens's energies enabled him to lead an active family and social life, including an indulgence in elaborate amateur theatricals, while maintaining a literary productiveness of astonishing proportions. He characteristically wrote his novels for serial publication and was himself the editor of many of the periodicals in which they appeared, including Bentley's Miscellany, the Daily News, Household Words, and All the Year Round. Among his close associates were his future biographer John Forster and the younger Wilkie Collins, with whom he collaborated on fictional and dramatic works. In rapid succession he published Oliver Twist, Nicholas Nickleby, The Old Curiosity Shop, and Barnaby Rudge, sometimes working on several novels simultaneously.Dickens's celebrity led to a tour of the United States in 1842. There he met Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Washington Irving, William Cullen Bryant, and other literary figures, and was received with an enthusiasm that was dimmed somewhat by the criticisms Dickens expressed in his American Notes and in the American chapters of Martin Chuzzlewit. The appearance of A Christmas Carol in 1843 sealed his position as the most widely popular writer of his time; it became an annual tradition for him to write a story for the season, of which the most memorable were The Chimes and The Cricket on the Hearth. He continued to produce novels at only a slightly diminished rate, publishing Dombey and Son in 1848 and David Copperfield in 1850.From this point on, his novels tended to be more elaborately constructed and harsher and less buoyant in tone than his earlier works. These late novels include Bleak House, Hard Times, Little Dorrit, A Tale of Two Cities, and Great Expectations. Our Mutual Friend, published in 1865, was his last completed novel and perhaps the most somber and savage of them all. Dickens had separated from his wife in 1858-he had become involved a year earlier with a young actress named Ellen Ternan-and the ensuing scandal had alienated him from many of his former associates and admirers. He was weakened by years of overwork and by a near-fatal railroad disaster during the writing of Our Mutual Friend. Nevertheless, he embarked on a series of public readings, including a return visit to America in 1867, which further eroded his health. A final work, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, a crime novel much influenced by Wilkie Collins, was left unfinished upon his death on June 9,1870, at the age of 58. British-born Simon Prebble has built a successful career that spans the Atlantic. As a stage and television actor, he has played in everything from soaps to Shakespeare, but it is as a veteran narrator of over four hundred audiobooks that he has made his mark since coming to the United States in 1990. As one of AudioFile magazine's Golden Voices, Simon has received over twenty Earphones Awards and five Publishers Weekly Listen-Up Awards, and he has been a finalist fourteen times for an Audie Award, the audiobook industry's version of the Oscar. In 2006, Publishers Weekly named him Narrator of the Year, and he was named Booklist's 2010 Voice of Choice. Joyce Bean is an accomplished audiobook narrator and director. In addition to being an AudioFile Earphones Award winner, she has been nominated multiple times for a prestigious Audie Award. Equally adept at narrating fiction and nonfiction, her titles include Blue Diary by Alice Hoffman, Blue Smoke by Nora Roberts, and several Jayne Ann Krentz novels. Joyce lives in West Michigan.