A Christmas Carol – 2016 – (Audiobook) Review

By Ben Wright (@iamzavagno | www.xgeeks.co.uk)

This review is spoiler-free.


Charles Dickens’ ghostly tale of sour and stingy miser Ebenezer Scrooge has captivated readers, listeners and audiences for over 150 years. This Christmas, Audible Studios brings this story to life in an audio drama featuring an all-star cast.

Most of us know the story of A Christmas Carol, but when it’s done really well, certain adaptions can stand apart from the rest – I’m talking A Muppet Christmas Carol and the likes of Scrooge: The Musical here. So where does Audible’s full-cast adaption of this timeless classic of redemption and yuletide kindness place itself among the other countless adaptions?
In terms of the production and editing, this audiobook is sensational! It is cut together perfectly, containing some outstanding sound engineering and musical scores, adding to the several layers of the audiobook’s, finely tuned, composition.

As for the performances, there is an indulgent feast of talent on display!

Sir Derek Jacobi oozes sophistication and gravitas as the story’s narrator, Charles Dickens and Kenneth Cranham puts in a very distinct performance as Ebenezer Scrooge. As for the ghosts, Brendan Coyle as The Ghost of Christmas Past tackles the text with great poise. Miriam Margolyes is my favourite pick of the ghosts, with her very interesting take on The Ghost of Christmas Present. She offers both warmth and sternness in equal measure in what is a very well balanced performance. There are also special mentions for Jamie Glover as Bob Cratchit and Jenna Coleman who, despite her small role, performed admirably as Belle.

At just over three and a half hours, A Christmas Carol is the perfect audiobook to easily binge through over the festive season – whether you’re wrapping presents or cooking Christmas dinner! The pacing matches the original novella, so you’ll whizz through this audiobook in the blink of an eye. Out of all of the adaptions of A Christmas Carol on Audible, this is easily the best of the bunch and I would direct you to this one before you even consider looking at other alternatives.

Negatives? Well, there isn’t any! This is a beautifully performed story with the stunning production value. I genuinely do not have a bad word to say about it.

A Christmas Carol is crammed full of stunning performances, production and music and is a truthful and passionate re-telling of one of the world’s most favourite stories. The audiobook is definitely one to add to your usual Christmas traditions!

A Christmas Carol is a truly wonderful production made with a lot of care and love. The production quality and editing is outstanding and the cast pull out all the stops to deliver some mesmerising performances. You may think you know this story by now, but you’ve never heard it like this before…

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