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The Prompt Copy of A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens, introduction by Isaac Gewirtz
Go onstage with Charles Dickens as he performs his Christmas Carol.
Charles Dickens could not only write a crackling good story, he could perform it. And so in 1853, he took his Christmas Carol show on the road, first in Britain and then in the United States. Audiences loved it. Dickens didn't simply read from his book. He transformed it into a stageworthy script—cutting, pasting together pages of excised passages, adding stage cues for himself, rewriting, then cutting some more.
Such an annotated stage copy is called a prompt copy. There is only one such copy of A Christmas Carol, created by Dickens himself, and The New York Public Library has it. Levenger partnered with the Library to bring you, for the first time, a full-color facsimile of it, revealing all of Dickens's handwritten markings. A new introduction by Library curator Isaac Gewirtz gives the backstory on how Dickens used this book, and a transcription of his emended text means you—or a showman you love—can read aloud A Christmas Carol much as the author did. It's a rare Christmas treasure and a new way to savor this timeless tale.
224 pages, full-color facsimile. Published by Levenger Press, 2009.
Hardcover. $48.00. ISBN 978-1-929154-39-5.