Charles Dickens publishes The Cricket on the Hearth

The Cricket on the Hearth.

A Fairy Tale of Home is a novella by Charles Dickens, written in 1845. It is the third of Dickens' five Christmas books, the others being A Christmas Carol (1843), The Chimes (1844), The Battle of Life (1846), and The Haunted Man (1847). The original illustrations were by Daniel Maclise, John Leech, Richard Doyle, Clarkson Stanfield and Edward Landseer. It is sub-divided into chapters which Dickens calls "Chirps", similar to the "Chimes" of The Chimes or the "Staves" of A Christmas Carol.

Dickens began writing the book around October 17 and had finished it by December 1. Like all of Dickens' Christmas books, it was immediately published in book form, not as a serial. It was first published on December 20 by Bradbury and Evans. Dickens described the novel as "quiet and domestic .. innocent and pretty."