The Chimes

  • by Charles Dickens
  • Narrated by Austin Vanfleet
  • 2 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

There are not many people - and as it is desirable that a story-teller and a story-listener should establish a mutual understanding as soon as possible, I beg it to be noticed that I confine this observation neither to young people nor to little people, but extend it to all conditions of people: little and big, young and old: yet growing up, or already growing down again - there are not, I say, many people who would care to sleep in a church. I don't mean at sermon-time in warm weather (when the thing has actually been done, once or twice), but in the night, and alone. A great multitude of persons will be violently astonished, I know, by this position, in the broad bold day. But it applies to night. It must be argued by night, and I will undertake to maintain it successfully on any gusty winter's night appointed for the purpose, with any one opponent chosen from the rest, who will meet me singly in an old churchyard, before an old church-door; and will previously empower me to lock him in, if needful to his satisfaction, until morning.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A pleasant surprise long overlooked . . .

At least overlooked by me, even as a degree holder in English Lit. Given the accolades due A Christmas Carol, I never opened Charles Dickens The Chimes. The full title is: The Chimes: A Goblin Story of Some Bells that Rang an Old Year Out and a New Year In. One can readily see the parallels between it and A Christmas Carol. This is a novella surrounding New Year's Eve "spirits of the chimes" which help the main character (Trotty) restore his faith and show him that nobody is born evil or unworthy, but rather that crime and poverty are things created by man.

As in all of Dickens’ works, greed, insensitivity, and social injustice are the true obstacles to happier New Years. Yet these can be overcome by virtue and, as the narrator (who does a marvelous job in this version) states, “So may the New Year be a happy one to you, happy to many more whose happiness depends on you!”

I would HIGHLY recommend this listen for all who enjoy English Literature and specifically, Dickens. A review copy audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in return for this unbiased review. My hope is that this review helps in your decision to obtain this book.

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- Bill Beaulac

Happy New Year!

Any additional comments?

Around the holidays in 19th century England, a man is taught a lesson from spirits. I'm speaking of course about Christmas Car... I mean, The Chimes.

Obviously Dickens found his golden goose formula and ran with it all the way to the bank. But, much to my surprise, The Chimes is still really good. In fact, I think the message surpasses that of its predecessor. It's so easy to look at Scrooge and feel superior to the stingy man who has everything but love. But what about the plight of the common man? The other characters in a Christmas Carol were scarcely characters at all; they were objects by which to contrast and judge Scrooge. This is where The Chimes comes in.

The Chimes was addressed to the downtrodden of the 1800s who were taught that poverty is a moral failing. In the famous scene of Good Will Hunting where the psychologist repeated tells Will, "it's not your fault," The Chimes is the psychologist and the reader is Will. It's the firm but loving assertion that what you believe about yourself isn't true, even if you can't accept it yet.

The narration would have been pretty good for any other book but somehow feels spot-on for Dickens. I actually think this style would work for any book of that era. It makes me happy to see that he's narrated some Robert Louis Stevenson. Despite the accent, I bet he would do an amazing Edgar Allen Poe.

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

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Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-06-2017
  • Publisher: Chadwick Audio