The Battle of Life: A Love Story is a novella by Charles Dickens, 1st published in 1846. It's the 4th of his five "Christmas Books", coming after The Cricket on the Hearth, followed by The Haunted Man & the Ghost's Bargain. The setting is an English village that stands on the site of a historic battle. Some characters refer to the battle as a metaphor for the struggles of life, hence the title. Battle is the only one of the five Christmas Books that has no supernatural or explicitly religious elements. (One scene takes place at Christmas time, but it isn't the final scene.) The story bears some resemblance to The Cricket on the Hearth in two aspects: it has a non-urban setting & it's resolved with a romantic twist. It's even less of a social novel than is Cricket. As is typical with Dickens, the ending is a happy one. It's one of Dickens' lesser-known works & has never attained any high level of popularity, a trait it shares among the Christmas Books with The Haunted Man.
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