“a short story by Philip Van Doren Stern, privately printed as a Christmas card to the author’s friends in 1943.”
NO MAJOR SPOILERS
The Greatest Gift is a short story by Philip Van Doren Stern which was the inspiration for the much loved Christmas film; It’s a Wonderful Life.
The story came to Stern in a dream, and he first published it in a small booklet which he sent out in his Christmas cards in 1943.
Despite being a short story it is beautifully written with detailed descriptions that set the scene. A heart warming story, in which George who is on the brink of ending his own life is shown by an angel what his life and the lives of those around him would be like without him, in a similar way to the ghosts in A Christmas Carol.