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The Classics never go out of fashion. Find new editions of old favourites, plus some abridged and re-told tales in this section.
In this gripping tale of kidnapping, shooting and murder, Charles Dickens shows the threats to a vulnerable boy’s existence and asks the eternal question: which is more powerful, good or evil? This and the other retellings by Real Reads are a fantastic way to introduce young children to some of the best-known and best-loved classics; beautifully presented and skilfully retold (and condensed – 64 pages in total) and illustrated, they are true to the original plot, capture something of the flavour and tone of the original work, while simplifying the narrative and dialogue. They’re primarily aimed for younger readers – 8-13 year olds but are also a great ‘quick fix’ for teenagers and adults. The Lovereading comment: What the Dickens does Dickens mean to you? Oliver’s empty bowl? Christmas ghosts? Exciting television dramas? Big books full of long words?Charles Dickens’ stories aren’t just classics because they’re old – they’re classics because they are fascinating, exciting and humorous, and because they show a great understanding of something that time can never change – human nature.Charles Dickens was a brilliant story-teller who had experienced every aspect of life in Victorian England. As a child he saw the misery of debtors’ prisons and, like Oliver Twist and David Copperfield, survived London’s dangerous streets. As an adult, he moved in high circles, amongst top politicians debating in parliament. Largely self-educated, he possessed the genius and the imagination to become the greatest writer of his age.A hundred and fifty years ago, anyone who could read read Dickens. Even Queen Victoria read Dickens. His work, often serialised in newspapers, was easily available. The exciting plots and lifelike characters appealed, as they do today, to young and old, rich and poor. Today, reading Dickens’ original novels is more of a challenge, as many of the things he described and the words he used to describe them are no longer part of our everyday experience.However, the things he wrote about – poverty, justice, cruelty, responsibility and love – are just as important today as they were all those years ago. A message from Gill Tavner:How many times have you heard somebody speak fondly about a Dickens, Austen or Hardy novel that they read in school or studied for an exam, yet they have not read another since? As an English Teacher and Head of English, I have witnessed the enjoyment experienced by children of all ages and abilities when guided sensitively through a daunting text. However, only the most confident readers will broaden their reading of classics independently of a teacher, either as children or in their adult life. Most people therefore deprive themselves of the delights offered by some of the most influential writers and thinkers. What a loss for them. What a loss for our society.Surely there is a way to make an abridged version an enjoyable and enriching rather than simply informative reading experience? Surely this is an important distinction if we aim to nurture keen, confident readers? In Real Reads we believe we have found an answer to these problems. For many readers, Real Reads will develop a confidence and enthusiasm to address the original, something we try to nurture in the ‘Taking Things Further’ section of every Real Read. For others, who might never have tackled the originals, Real Reads make accessible great stories, great characters and important moral debates which they might otherwise never have encountered. To take a look at the other classic novels published by Real Reads click here.
Chosen by Michael Morpurgo. As famous lines go in literature, ‘Please sir, I want some more’ is one that not many children are unaware of but have they read the book from which it came? If not, then Oliver Twist, the book is here. A den of villains and thieves awaits the reader determined to drag Oliver back to his life of crime on the streets of London but can Oliver’s native honesty, strength and goodness enable him to resist? Garth Nix has written a terrific Introduction in this Puffin Classics edition. He says, ‘I first read Oliver twist when I was about 12 or 13...the story is so good that you can skim along the surface and enjoy the ride – you don’t have to dip beneath and get into the deeper stuff that lies below...or you can read it more deeply and experience the adventure and at the same time absorb the historical detail and social criticism that is the foundation of the story’. In this terrific pocket size Puffin edition there’s lots of additional material at the end of the book including an author profile, a guide to who’s who in Oliver Twist plus many related activities to do beyond the book.
Christmas: everyone loves Christmas except for Ebenezer Scrooge whose name has become synonymous with a miserly outlook on life. Hating Christmas as usual and doing all he can to spoil everyone else’s fun, Scrooge is visited by three ghosts one year and between them they make him change his ways…The result is one of the most wonderful accounts of the fun and feasting that Christmas can bring. Anthony Horowitz regards A Christmas Carol as a perfect introduction to Dickens. From Michael Morpurgo: "The first few pages were so engaging, Marley's ghostly face on the knocker of Scrooge's door still gives me the shivers."
The original Christmas tale is brought to life in this colourful graphic novel adaptation. It is the second Charles Dickens title from Classical Comics and probably his best-loved story. Set in Victorian England and highlighting the social injustice of the time we see one Ebenezer Scrooge go from oppressor to benefactor when he gets a rude awakening to how his life is, and how it should be. This is the original text of the classic novel but brought to life in full colour. If you would prefer to read a modern quick text of A Christmas Carol then click here.
This is the full story in quick modern English for a fast-paced read. The original Christmas tale is brought to life in this colourful graphic novel adaptation. It is the second Charles Dickens title from Classical Comics and probably his best-loved story. Set in Victorian England and highlighting the social injustice of the time we see one Ebenezer Scrooge go from oppressor to benefactor when he gets a rude awakening to how his life is, and how it should be. If you'd prefer to read this classic novel in the original text then click here.
All the action, bravery and romance of those living through the bloody drama of the French Revolution with the unflinching emblem of the guillotine always in the background are unfolded in Charles Dickens’s classic A Tale of Two Cities. Charles Darnay gets caught up in the great events of revolutionary Paris. Facing certain death, he has only one way out. Can Sydney Carton, who looks exactly like him, save him from the terrifying blade? Additional notes on the characters, an author profile and an Introduction by Roddy Doyle add an extra element in this classic edition. Just click here to view our range of Children’s Classics, then click on the Paperback tab to view all the Puffin Children’s Classics.
The classic tale of Oliver Twist brought to life in full colour. This beautiful version of Charles Dickens' tale of childhood in Victorian times will delight readers of all ages. From those who remember the original Classics Illustrated, to new readers - all will love this telling of the traditional tale. A message from the publisher: Classics Illustrated - A wonderful History - We're delighted to re-introduce these marvellous comic books to new generations of readers who will surely enjoy them as fantastic tales of adventure and excitement but will also improve their reading skills as a result and be inspired to read the complete versions of many of these fine works. I sincerely hope that you enjoy these superb adaptations and are similarly inspired as I was, nearly 50 years ago. Jeff Brooks, CEO, Classic Comic Store Ltd
“Bah!” said Scrooge. “Humbug. ” Christmas calls for a reading of A Christmas Carol! Charles Dickens’s story of mean old Ebenezer Scrooge who hates Christmas and refuses to celebrate or even allow others to celebrate. But then, one year, he is visited by the ghost of his former partner Jacob Marley who warns Scrooge of the misery he is piling up in the future. Can Scrooge change his ways? And what will Christmas be like afterwards? Paired with the original illustrations by Arthur Rackham this is a gift edition for all ages.
Best-selling illustrator Quentin Blake brings fresh appeal to Charles Dickens’s classic Christmas story in this lovely edition. He captures the essence of the miserable Ebenezer Scrooge who would like to live without kindness, charity, love and especially Christmas which he hates particularly because it involves spending money. But everything changes for Scrooge when he is visited by a succession of ghosts who make him see the error of his ways. Now Christmas can come alive and Ebenezer Scrooge is transformed. The warmth of the newly found Mr Scrooge is especially delightfully captured by Quentin Blake. ~ Julia Eccleshare
A Christmas Carol is the most famous, heart-warming and chilling festive story of them all. In these pages we meet Ebenezer Scrooge, whose name is synonymous with greed and parsimony: 'Every idiot who goes about with Merry Christmas on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding, and buried with a stake of holly through his heart'. This attitude is soon challenged when the ghost of his old partner, Jacob Marley, returns from the grave to haunt him on Christmas Eve. Scrooge is then visited in turn by three spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Future, each one revealing the error of his ways and gradually melting the frozen heart of this old miser, leading him towards his redemption. On the journey we take with Scrooge we encounter a rich array of Dickensian characters including the poor Cratchit family with the ailing Tiny Tim and the generous and jolly Fezziwig. When Charles Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol in 1843 he fashioned an enduring gift to the world, capturing the essence of the love, kindness and generosity of the Christmas season. It is a timeless classic and the story's uplifting magic remains as potent today as when it was first published.
Interest Age 11+ Reading Age 8+. A wonderfully suspenseful and page-turning mystery and thriller rolled into one involving a girl, her step-brother, a boy ghost and an old knarled oak tree, with a clever and surprising twist at the end. Fear of a ghost and loathing for her step-brother, Sarah must make a decision that is life threatening, not just for her but perhaps for others too. A NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I have always loved ghost stories and I have always loved old trees. They both can only be heard in whispers and creaks. They are both tangled with age and secrets. So I wanted to try and write a story about both a ghost and a tree. And when I’d begun it, other characters in the story started to interest me, like Sarah and Matt and how they felt about each other. Then the story had a new layer. A human layer. I hope you enjoy reading it. If you have any comments, my website is: www.geocities.com/catherinefisheruk. I’d love to hear from you. Perfect for Reluctant Readers as well as keen readers. To view other titles we think are suitable for reluctant readers please click here.