Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Review: Keeping Christmas by Dan Walsh

Keeping Christmas
Written by     Dan Walsh
Published on  September 1st  2015 by Revell
Genre            Christian Fiction

Stan opened the ugly ornaments box and pulled out the top three ornaments, the ones wrapped in green paper, the kids' favorites, and set them on the coffee table. He picked up the first one, the biggest one--Anna's blue pinecone--and began to unwrap it. Without thinking, Judith walked up, stopped him, and gently took it out of his hand. She wrapped it back up, set it carefully in the box. Then picked up the other two ornaments, put them in the box, and closed the flaps.

"What's the matter?" Stan said. "Did I do something wrong?"

"I don't think I can do this."

Nothing is more beautiful than family

For the first time since their children were born, empty nesters Judith and Stan Winters spent Thanksgiving without the kids, and it's looking like Christmas will be the same. Judith can't bring herself to even start decorating for the holiday; her kids always hung the first ornaments on the tree, ornaments they had made each year since they were toddlers. Sure, the ornaments were strange-looking--some were downright ugly--but they were tradition.

With Judith refusing to decorate the bare spruce tree in their living room, Stan's only hope for saving the holiday is found in a box of handmade ornaments . . .

Keeping Christmas is written by Dan Walsh, whose debut novel The Unfinished Gift won two Carol Awards. He has written a number of historical and suspense fictions and some of his works are compared to Nicholas Sparks. I was on a hunt for Christmassy novels and the description of this book caught my eyes. I was curious to know the secret behind those special Christmas ornaments. 

Keeping Christmas is a heart-touching story. Judith is distressed when her kids and grandchildren miss the Thanksgiving and heartbroken hearing the Christmas will be the same. She does not even wish to decorate the house and puts her favorite handmade ornaments by kids in the attic instead of hanging on the Christmas tree. Stan, her husband is worried and is constantly trying to cheer her up. Her friend Betty suggests ideas to restore the Christmas spirit in Judith, but what Stan had in mind for his beloved wife is far beyond her expectations.

Honestly speaking, I can't recollect the last time I was in tears reading a Christmas themed story. It has never happened before, I think. Anyhow, I cried and those were the tears of sheer happiness. Trust me! I had been in a similar situation (thrice!), so I could easily relate myself to her. I know how painful it is, to spend the most awaited day alone at home ** Gasp**. Dan Welsh has perfectly captured all the emotions and agonies in this book ** Applause**. Had a beatific smile when Judith received a wonderful surprise from Stan (not giving away the surprise, find it out yourself). How thoughtful!

Keeping Christmas is a meaningful story. It conveys the true meaning of Christmas; The Christmas is all about cherishing and making memories, also reminds that Christmas is about togetherness and giving and sacrificing. The supporting characters are also lovable. I recommend this lovely book to all who are in search of a meaningful Festive Season Story.

In short, Keeping Christmas is a light-hearted book with a significant message. Pick it up and read!

My Rating: 4.5/5 ( I loved it!)
Happy Reading!

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