Sunday, February 04, 2007

A Christmas Caroline

Author Kyle Smith, who is a guy, writes this chick lit homage to Charles Dickens. A send-up of A Christmas Carol, this story stars Caroline, a misanthropic fashionista in New York City. Her supporting cast, sporting such names as Ursula Heep and Nic Nickleby, do their own bits to help the story along, but on the whole, I found it inadequate and tedious.

Caroline is plenty self-centered, and her Christmas Eve is wholly disastrous, but more for herself than anyone else. Her three ghostly visitors appear right on schedule, but became dull in no time at all. Caroline manages to reform without getting a clue, and the would-be climax, which includes a surprising appearance by Miss Havisham, is lackluster at best. Even the ending, which should have been satisfying, was not-quite-resolved, which I found unsettling.

So if you, like me, found the premise intriguing, don't waste your time. The original is superior in every way to this pallid wannabe.


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