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Friday Fun: Get into the Holiday Spirits

With some retellings of A Christmas Carol. There's a surprising number out there and some take quite surprising and spicy directions. So, embrace your inner Bob Cratchit, pour some hot cocoa, and drop some new titles on your holiday TBR.

Marley Was Dead to Begin With...

The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand

On Christmas Eve five years ago, Holly was visited by three ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she'd become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways.

She didn't.

And then she died.

Now she's stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge--as the latest Ghost of Christmas Past.

Every year, they save another miserly grouch. Every year, Holly stays frozen at seventeen while her family and friends go on living without her. So far, Holly's afterlife has been miserable.

But this year, everything is about to change. . . .

Miss Marley by Vanessa Lafaye

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…

A Hunt So Wild and Cruel by Rebecca F. Kenney

She’s been a bad girl...

They’ve been summoned for a reckoning.

Queen Lauriel hoards wealth and persecutes anyone with magic. She even cancels the Midwinter Glee festival, claiming that it wastes the Crown's money. But one cold night, the Wild Hunt rides across the sky, led by three majestic Fae. They've been called to teach the Queen a lesson, and if she can't learn it by their deadline, her throne won't be the only thing she'll lose. For the three riders, visiting the Queen is a welcome reprieve from their existence as bodiless spirits. But if they fail in their task, their place in the Wild Hunt is at risk, and the alternative is a far worse fate.

Three ghost riders...

One chance to change.

Carol by Darin Kennedy


There is no doubt whatever about that.

So who the hell sent Carol this text?

Born Christmas Day eighteen years ago, Carol Davis is known for anything but holiday spirit.

Sharp-tongued and self-centered, she’s made her way to the pinnacle of high school by walking over anyone who stands in her way, be they enemy, friend, or even family.

Visited by the ghost of her best friend on the anniversary of her December drowning, Carol learns that a horrible fate awaits her and only by facing the Spirits of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come can she avoid the coming darkness.

With each spectral visitation, she’s taken down a familiar yet fresh path of discovery, uncovering the innocent girl she used to be, accepting the bitter young woman she has become, and yearning for a future where she can dare to love again.

As the clock strikes midnight on Christmas Eve, Carol has one last chance to turn her life around, but have the Spirits come too late to change the course of destiny?

A Christmas Carol Murder by Heather Redmond

London, December 1835: Charles and Kate are out with friends and family for a chilly night of caroling and good cheer. But their blood truly runs cold when their singing is interrupted by a body plummeting from an upper window of a house. They soon learn the dead man at their feet, his neck strangely wrapped in chains, is Jacob Harley, the business partner of the resident of the house, an unpleasant codger who owns a counting house, one Emmanuel Screws.

Ever the journalist, Charles dedicates himself to discovering who's behind the diabolical defenestration. But before he can investigate further, Harley's corpse is stolen. Following that, Charles is visited in his quarters by what appears to be Harley's ghost—or is it merely Charles’s overwrought imagination? He continues to suspect Emmanuel, the same penurious penny pincher who denied his father a loan years ago, but Kate insists the old man is too weak to heave a body out a window. Their mutual affection and admiration can accommodate a difference of opinion, but matters are complicated by the unexpected arrival of an infant orphan. Charles must find the child a home while solving a murder, to ensure that the next one in chains is the guilty party . . .

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