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A Carol Dickens Christmas: A Novel

Thomas Fox Averill

Winner of the 2015 Byron Caldwell Smith Book Award

A 2015 Kansas Notable Book

It’s Christmas, and Carol Dickens’s life is in major transition. Her son Finn, a talented trumpet player, is about to leave for college. Her ex-husband, a real-estate wheeler-dealer, wants to sell their properties in Kansas and move to Arizona. Her wheelchair-bound friend, Laurence, has fallen in love with her. To top it all off, Scraps, the family dog, is dying. As her world spins out of control, Carol seeks refuge in her research on the use of the semicolon—and in her ritual of cooking the perfect series of Victorian holiday meals inspired by A Christmas Carol.


Thomas Fox Averill’s rode and Secrets of the Tsil Café: A Novel with Recipes are also available from the University of New Mexico Press. He teaches at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas.


“A compelling Christmas tale.”


Library Journal

“Cheery yuletide traditions are hampered by modern-day distractions in A Carol Dickens Christmas by Thomas Fox Averill, a charming story that pieces together morsels drawn from Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol: Christmas songs, poems, recipes, and themes of family and change. . . . A Carol Dickens Christmas captures the essence of Christmas, revealing that changes can sometimes bring blessings.”


Foreword Reviews

“Averill’s new book, A Carol Dickens Christmas: A Novel, takes the built-in structure of Christmas and spins a heart-warming story that echoes such classics as A Christmas Carol, The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, The Night Before Christmas, The Twelve Days of Christmas, and the biblical Christmas story.”


Topeka Capital-Journal

A Carol Dickens Christmas is a book that’s more than the sum of its parts: It’s a tale of seemingly ordinary people and their more or less ordinary lives that speaks to deeper truths of what it means to be human, what it means to change, what it means to love.”


The Wichita Eagle



The Manhattan Mercury

“A tale of loss, redemption, and transformation.”


Topeka Magazine

“( A Carol Dickens Christmas) is a story of family and food, community and tradition, and it captures the wistful melancholy of the season as well as its hope and cheer.”


Kansas History

5 x 8 in. 248 pages