'The Life of Our Lord' by Charles Dickens includes illustrations by Simon Dewey

Published: Saturday, Nov. 24 2012 5:00 a.m. MST

"THE LIFE OF OUR LORD" (200th Anniversary Edition), by Charles Dickens, illustrated by Simon Dewey, Shadow Mountain, $17.99, 87 pages (nf)

To celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Christian and English novelist Charles Dickens, Deseret Book has recently released "The Life of Our Lord," a book Dickens wrote for his own children during the years 1846 to 1849.

The story begins, "My dear young children, I am very anxious that you should know something about the History of Jesus Christ. For everybody ought to know about Him. No one ever lived, who was so good, so kind, so gentle, and so sorry for all the people who did wrong, or were in any way ill or miserable, as he was."

The book goes on to describe the account of Jesus Christ's life and teachings. Dickens focuses on the miracles Jesus performed and on lessons such as charity, compassion and forgiveness that Christians can learn from.

Included in the book are illustrations by Mormon artist Simon Dewey. Each of the paintings fit with the timeless stories of Jesus, from a scene of the Nativity and the three wise men to the Resurrection.

Dickens wrote "The Life of Our Lord" exclusively for his children, to whom he read it aloud every Christmas. His children continued the read the story for years after his death in 1870. Dickens strictly forbade publication of the story and requested the story to not be published until the last of his children had died. On the passing of Dickens' last surviving son, named Henry Fielding Dickens in 1933, the story was then released to the public in 1934.

Email: klewis@deseretnews.com

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