Sam and Lizzie are freezing and hungry on the streets of Victorian London.
When Sam asks a wealthy man for some coins, he is rudely turned away. Months of struggle suddenly find their focus, and Sam resolves to kill the man. Huddling in a graveyard for warmth, Sam and Lizzie are horrified to see the earth around one of the tombs begin to shift, shortly followed by the wraithlike figure of a ghostly man. He warns Sam about the future which awaits such a bitter heart, and so begins Sam’s journey led by terrifying spirits through the past, present and future, after which Sam must decide whether to take the man, Scrooge’s, life or not.
A perfectly layered, tense and supremely satisfying twist on one of Dickens’ most popular books, cleverly reinvented to entice a younger readership.
200words (or less) review: This is definitely my favourite book from Chris Priestley I’ve read up until now. Whether or not you’ve read A Christmas Carol you will be familiar with the tale and this book is a captivating ghostly tale in its own right, with of course a nod to the original that inspired it.
Sam and Lizzie are cold and hungry. On Christmas Eve they ask a wealthy man for coins to buy food. This man is Scrooge and you can imagine what he says. Sam heart is hardened by his and Lizzie’s life on the streets and now his hate has found a face. They follow Scrooge home, which is how they become caught in Scrooge’s ghostly journey.
Chris Priestley weaves Sam and Lizzie’s journey into the familiar tale of A Christmas Carol brilliantly. The book is a quick read but the story doesn’t feel incomplete. The writing is great. Chris Priestley has this knack for making books feel haunted, like the ghostly wisps are coming of the page.
The Last of the Spirits certainly should be added to Christmas lists for years to come. I know I plan on reading every winter.