Mrs Scrooge: A Christmas Tale by Carol Ann Duffy, illustrated by Posy Simmonds (Picador, 2009)
A fresh spin on a Christmas classic and a welcome addition to our ever-growing collection of seasonal literature. I try to buy something new each year and as far as possible I choose a book that will appeal to adults and children alike. This entertaining story certainly fits the bill and Posy Simmonds’ illustrations are a humorous delight.
I have quoted a few lines from the story below, but without, I hope spoiling the story for anyone new to this quirky tale. Mrs Scrooge is a widow (her husband ‘doornail dead’) who lives with her cat Catchit and is an avowed enemy of consumerism and champion of the environment and of free range turkeys:
‘She hated waste, consumerism, Mrs Scrooge, foraged in the London parks for chestnuts, mushrooms, blackberries, ate leftovers, recycled, mended, passed on, purchased secondhand, turned the heating down and put on layers, walked everywhere, drank tap water, used public libraries, possessed a wind-up radio, switched off lights, lit candles (darkness is cheap and Mrs Scrooge liked it) and would not spend one penny on a plastic bag.’
See what happens when the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future make their appearance. You will not be disappointed and may even shed a tear…