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The Gift of the Magi (American Classics Library) Paperback – 30 Aug 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (30 Aug. 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 1481136224
  • ISBN-13: 978-1481136228
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 0.2 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 807,766 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

The beloved short story first published in 1906 is presented in an attractive edition with full-color illustrations that bring the sentimental story of the young couple to life. Jim and Della live in a furnished flat in New York City, scraping by on a minimal income early in their marriage. At Christmastime, Della sells her beautiful, long hair for money to buy Jim a platinum pocket-watch chain. On the same day, Jim sells his heirloom pocket watch to buy a set of hair combs that Della has admired. Their Christmas gifts are compromised, but they realize they have the best gift of all - each other. The story is a period piece, with lengthy sentences, some old-fashioned vocabulary and asides to the reader from the omniscient narrator. Lynch's gentle illustrations help make the story accessible to today's readers, providing historical context in settings, costumes and the accoutrements of the era, as well as believable characterizations of the young couple. The text is printed on sepia-toned backgrounds that extend the antique flavor of the narrative. (Picture book. 10 & up) (Kirkus Reviews) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

A heart-warming tale reminding us that love is more important than possessions. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Eleni TOP 500 REVIEWER on 29 Sept. 2010
Format: Hardcover
I am one of those people who love exchanging gifts especially during the Christmas season, and I can't possibly think of a better glorification of gift giving then this story by O. Henry. For me this is what Christmas spirit is all about.

The "Gift of the Magi" tells the story of Della and James Dillingham Young, a loving young couple, who though poor in possessions are truly rich with all the love they have for one another. It is the day before Christmas and beautiful Della surrounded by poverty has only one dollar and eighty-seven cents to buy her husband Jim a present worthy of the love she has for him. And so she sacrifices her most precious possession; her lovely long flowing hair to buy Jim a chain for his precious watch, only to discover that he has sold his watch to buy her a set of combs.

What these two did may seem crazy or even sad " (...)But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. Of all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the magi."

This lovely story will make no sense to those who measure the value of a gift based on its price, convenience and practicality, so if you are one of those people, don't bother to even read the book. If you however enjoy the idea of the gift more then the gift itself, you too are the magi and I know you will love this story.

This new edition of O Henry's classic Christmas story is beautifully illustrated by P. J. Lynch. Both the story and the illustrations will please children and adults as well. This is an excellent book to have and a fantastic idea for a gift; it is after all a story about giving.

Have a Very Happy Christmas!!!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dee McCarthy on 29 Dec. 2008
Format: Hardcover
I bought this book as I am a huge fan of P.J. Lynch's artwork. His beautiful illustrations bring alive O. Henry's story of how a young couple each sacrifice a treasured possession in order to buy the other a Christmas present. I loved it and have re-read it many times.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. Rousen on 4 Jan. 2010
Format: Hardcover
i bought 4 of these books for friends this christmas and they were delighted,what a lovely illustrated book and the story should bring us all back to base..i remember reading the same story many years ago,it was of eastern european origin,ihave been trying for along timeto look for the book, but didn't know the name,it's only when i read a article from a a writer in a monthly magazine thati saw this book mentioned,and it was the same story, butit gave me a book title,i then came to amazon,and there was a book i was looking for,i am more than happy to recieve and read this book,i love it
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. Dowden HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Feb. 2015
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have always enjoyed the stories of O Henry, the pen name of William Porter, but this is such a story that for me has such simplicity, but also such eloquence that it has become one of my all time favourite short stories.

With a couple on the bread line, it is difficult for them to buy each other a present for Christmas, but as you read here they do succeed, but at the end of the day are the presents really that practical? Poignant, and with a certain level of irony near the end this story is full of pathos and isn’t just relevant to Christmas. This story can be used at any time of the year when presents are bought, and is still current and will always be so whilst there are people suffering from poverty.

If you are looking for something short but thoughtful, and that will stir up your emotions, then this is an ideal piece.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kath on 26 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Oh the joy of the gift of giving, a lovely little story of a young couple whose love for each other would sacrifice the thing the cherished most.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Derek F on 20 April 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A simple tale of great love shared and sacrifice made to bring joy to a loved one.
Surrender of greatest asset/gift to pleasure another.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By T on 21 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Short but thought provoking. Brings home the real importance of loved ones and special times. A cup of tea read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. R. cochran on 22 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoy the short stories of O' Henry. They are often ironic or cynical and very handy for reading on a train.
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