07-21-18 Patricia Sargeant

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

The Christmas Wager, or Much Ado About Dickens


My dearest Reader,

The Christmas Wager is humbly dedicated to the genius known as Charles Dickens. He created the written joy of the Victorian Christmas we know of today and made my upbringing magical by bringing characters to life in my heart when I was surrounded by the worst of times as opposed to the best of them. He tossed me into the vast world I’m inspired to write about.

In honor of Charles Dickens and the season of Christmas, especially given my new release, I've decided to create a list of 10 things you may or may not know about Charles Dickens.
  1. The term "What the Dickens" was in use long before Dickens was ever born. We're talking Shakespeare. Dickens back in Shakespeare's era was a term for "the devil." Imagine that.
  2. He was known to inspect his children's room every morning and leave notes for them about their lack of tidiness. Parenting through writing, I say!
  3. Charles had a secret study built behind a door that looked like a bookshelf. He liked to hideaway in this secret room.
  4. He had a pet raven named Grip. You think Edgar Allen Poe had a thing for ravens? Not like Dickens did! The raven was so beloved by Charles, that he used Grip as a character in his mystery novel, Barnaby Rudge. It's believed that the raven in Barnaby Rudge actually inspired Poe to write his poem. As if his love wasn't apparent in his writing, when Grip died, Charles Dickens had it stuffed.
  5. Commercialization as we know of today (think Star Wars toys and so on), started with non other than Charles Dickens. His first serial, The Pickwick Papers, was so popular that there were unauthorized sales of "Pickwick Pastries" and other items in shops that owners tried to cash in on. Obviously, Charles didn't see a penny of the sales on those pastries, but his popularity said it all. He had pastries named after his books!
  6. He always started other books as he was writing his current ones. He was known to write as many as four books at once, always overlapping ideas and thoughts between them all.
  7. His youngest son, Edward Bulwer Lytton Dickens, was named after the infamous author whose opening lines started with, "It was a dark and stormy night." Bulwer Lytton and Charles Dickens were good friends and so Dickens thought it fitting to honor his friend accordingly.
  8. He loved giving everyone nicknames. Including himself. He referred to himself as "Revolver" and gave nicknames to his kids like "Chickenstalker" and "Skittles." (And no, they didn't have Skittles candies back then). Skittles was a variant to bowling and was a pub game. Makes you wonder about his kids...
  9. His first published fiction hit a Monthly Magazine when he was only 21.
  10. He was obsessed with cold showers. Imagine that. He claimed it "became a necessity". Mmmmm. A bit hot blooded, Mr. Dickens?
If you loved learning about Mr. Dickens, consider delving into The Christmas Wager as it's set in his era! 

Here is the blurb:
-A mysterious key to an attic that cannot be found...
-A ghost with good but overly ambitious intentions...
-And a forgotten wager that is about to turn Miss Barrington's life into a holiday mess.

London, England - Winter of 1860

When all the ladies of London realize that handsome and refined gentleman, the Duke of Ainsley, is formally looking for a wife, only weeks before Christmas, a mad dash to claim him begins. Miss Barrington knows her chances with the duke are incredibly good given what her close gypsy friend had once foretold, but a forgotten wager with her greatest nemesis, American millionaire, Mr. Redstone, is about to bring on complications and...chaos. Will she claim the dashing and respectable duke once foretold by the stars? Or will she fall for Mr. Redstone and go against destiny? Only the days leading up to Christmas will tell!

The next book that follows will even feature Mr. Dickens himself.

Happy Christmas!

Much love,
Delilah Marvelle

Here is the link to my website: http://www.DelilahMarvelle.com


Judith Ashley said...

Thanks for the information about Dickens and a look at your newest release! I'm betting on the the Duke, who won't be as respectable when we get to know him because, after all, a gypsy friend had once foretold the match! Can't go against that!!!

Sarah Raplee said...

I'm a big Dickens fan, too, Delilah! The Christmas Wager sounds like such a fun read: mystery, ghosts, romance and Christmas!

Shannon said...

Ha! Those were good. Left notes for his kids' cleaning habits? Wow, what a guy. :-)

Delilah Marvelle said...

Thank you Judith and Sarah for having me! Merry Christmas!

Shannon, lol, that's one of the ones that really stuck out for me. Nothing like a man who nags through letters :) Merry Christmas!