And forgotten for very good reasons. Dickens made a great success with A Christmas Carol - rightly so. He then wrote a Christmas Book/long short story for each Christmas for the following four years. Only The Haunted Man is specifically set at Christmas. I greatly admire A Christmas Carol so I thought I'd try the others and I've recently re-read The Chimes. The work it reminded me most of was The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, oddly enough, with virtuous working class being endlessly put down by stupid and complacent bourgeoisie. Dickens was clearly trying to follow but not reproduce A Christmas Carol, so The Chimes is set at New Year, not Christmas. There is a supernatural visitation to a character who learns from it, but the character - Trotty Veck - is good hearted unlike Scrooge, so it seems he doesn't need to learn anything significant. (He read in a newspaper how a young desititute mother killed herself and thinks it very wrong. The chimes in the nearby church tower show how in time his own daughter could do the same.) The happy ending - so it was all a dream - is unconvincing. Not Dickens at his best.
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