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Publisher's Summary

Before A Christmas Carol there was...Miss Marley

A seasonal tale of kindness and goodwill

Orphans Clara and Jacob Marley live by their wits, scavenging for scraps in the poorest alleyways of London, in the shadow of the workhouse. Every night, Jake promises his little sister ‘tomorrow will be better’, and when the chance to escape poverty comes their way, he seizes it despite the terrible price.

And so Jacob Marley is set on a path that leads to his infamous partnership with Ebenezer Scrooge. As Jacob builds a fortress of wealth to keep the world out, only Clara can warn him of the hideous fate that awaits him if he refuses to let love and kindness into his heart....

In Miss Marley, Vanessa Lafaye weaves a spellbinding Dickensian tale of ghosts, goodwill and hope - a perfect prequel to A Christmas Carol.

©2018 Vanessa Lafaye (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

"Exquisite." (Veronica Henry, author of A Night on the Orient Express)

"A charming, finely detailed and beautifully written jaunt through Dickens’ London - a tale of heartbreak, love, kindness, and avarice. With Lafaye at her finest it’s seamlessly finished by Mascull; this book is a total, total joy." (Fionnuala Kearney, author of You, Me and Other People)

"A moving companion piece to the classic A Christmas Carol, with all the traditional echoes of the Dickensian festive season woven through, and with tragedy and joy in equal measure. A delight." (Essie Fox, author of The Somnambulist)

What listeners say about Miss Marley

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Perfect Christmas read

I really liked this book, it was a great story and perfect to listen to before the holidays. I definitely will add it to my Christmas collection and listen to it every year. If I had one minor complaint, I would have loved it to be longer and go in to more details about Marley and his sister's early life, their parents (and uncle) and the situation that brought them to their downfall. And also (*possible spoiler alert*) much more towards the end of the book about the people Marley affected and the paths their lives took. But overall I highly recommend this book for Christmas. It is a perfect companion to A Christmas Carol, and I really enjoyed it. Also the performance was flawless, and the narrators voice was perfect for the story.

2 people found this helpful

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Kindness and goodwill?

Cathy Johnson
I found this to be a pretty depressing story and had very little to do with kindness and goodwill, it was the opposite, really. A lesson in how NOT to be. I love that time period and it was a well written story but too sad for me.

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  • Jane
  • 11-17-18

A Christmas Read

Curl up in your favourite reading place, preferably with a mince pie and a glass of wine at your side, and a fire crackling in the grate. The story begins with two hungry, ragged orphans, barely clawing a living on the cold and cheerless streets of London. Jacob Marley, later to become the unlamented business partner of Ebeneezer Scrooge, has had everything taken from him, except his sister Clara. Jacob is determined to overcome the dire straits he and Clara have found themselves in and gain revenge on their unfeeling. cruel, uncle. They come across a stranger one night, lying in the alley, mugged, garrotted and left to die. Seizing the opportunity, Jacob takes his purse, setting their frozen feet upon a fateful course. Redolent of Dickens' London, the atmosphere is thick with grime and suffering, ruthless avarice, love, loss, and a visit from a Christmas ghost.

1 person found this helpful