One Imperfect Christmas by Myra Johnson

Publication Date: September 1, 2009

 

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In [easyazon_link identifier=”1426700709″ locale=”US” tag=”rabidreaders-20″]One Imperfect Christmas[/easyazon_link] Natalie Pearce has been living with an all-consuming guilt of not having been there for her mother when she suffered a stroke. With her mother in a nursing home with no signs of leaving, Natalie’s family connections seem to drift further apart and her marriage is on the brink of dissolution. Daniel Pearce doesn’t know how he can help his wife and their daughter has been unmanageably rebellious. Is there any saving this family?

 

 

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A Cowboy for Christmas by Kristen James

Release Date: November 10, 2009

 

KJ_A_Cowboy_For_Christmas

Annie Prudhomme left her home of Marietta, Montana with big dreams but finds herself returning to town after a divorce. Her family turns their backs on her and she settles in to remodel a home she’s inherited. Carson Scott still carries a torch for Annie but he has responsibilities he didn’t before she left town to think of and isn’t so eager to put his heart on the line. Is Annie ready for something serious or is she just looking for Christmas company?

 

Annie’s story is pretty typical. As a teenager she hated her hometown and counted the days until she left it behind and part of leaving it behind meant leaving her teenaged boyfriend, Carson. She moved, she got married, she got divorced and now she sees where she grew up with new eyes but returning and admitting that it was never as bad as she always claimed is not something she’s sure that she’s ready to do. Without that correction to the outlook of the past, Carson isn’t sure he’s going to put himself on the line again.

The hallmark of a great romance is likability and both characters lack in that department. Carson is a good guy who moved on with his life after Annie left and got married and had kids but he’s grating and passive aggressive to a point that, at times, makes him somewhat uncomfortable to read. Annie is extremely locked up in her own pride so that she’s stymied to an extent in the story. The reader knows what is going to happen in  A Cowboy for Christmas, it’s a romance after all, but I can’t say that I didn’t think these two people wouldn’t be better off just going their own ways. Carson has a child, which complicates matters and puts a greater emphasis on him on the surety of the outcome, but as much as we hear about it, does he really consider his ultimate responsibility in the final balance? They’re dancing around the obvious with one nagging and reminding the other of the problems they had and the lack of consideration which does not bode well for a lasting connection. That time she left will always be at the forefront in arguments.

Let’s be real, though. This does not have to be a realistic read. It’s a romance novel and an escape so how does it measure on the enjoyment scale? The answer would be middling. A Cowboy for Christmas is mostly well written and could experience a better flow with some paring down of fillers. At 104 pages, it should be a light and fast read but doesn’t feel quick. If you like the end of a romance novel, pick  A Cowboy for Christmas  up. If you’re looking for story, you’ll find better but also worse.

 

 

Read an excerpt and pick up A Cowboy for Christmas by Kristen James today on:

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For more information about Kirsten James, visit her website. You can connect with her on Goodreads, Facebook and Twitter @writerkristenj.

Jewish Christmas by Jasmine Schwartz

Publication Date: January 18, 2014

 

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Melissa Morris has an annual day as a Christmas tradition, when she cooks a lavish seafood dinner for friends. While shopping for seafood she runs into a former sorority sister and gets caught up in an avalanche of events that takes her to the far flung reaches of New York City.

 

 

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The Mistletoe Mishap by Aileen Fish

Publication Date: December 14, 2011

 

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Robert, Viscount Alderton, sees his future wife under the mistletoe and kisses her, only to discover that the woman he thought was his future wife was her cousin, Isabella. A rake witnesses the encounter and sees Isabella as fair game. Can Robert protect Isabella (Lella) or is she ruined in society?

 

 

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National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

Movie Released: December 1, 1989 | DVD Released: September 30, 2008

 

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Clark Griswold has a dream of surprising his family with a backyard pool. The only impediment to making the dream a reality is that his bonus has yet to arrive. While they wait, Clark and crew enjoy the most wonderful time of the year with cherished family and surprise visitors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Continue reading National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

Elf (2003)

Movie Released: November 7, 2003 | DVD Releasd: October 24, 2006

 

DVD_ElfA child slipped into Santa’s sack one Christmas Eve and was taken to the North Pole where he was adopted by an older elf (Bob Newhart). When he finds out that he is human, the elf decides to go on a quest to New York City to find his biological father, a hard-hearted Children’s publisher. Will everything work out as Buddy expects?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Doctor Who 2014 Christmas Special: The Last Christmas

DVD Release Date: February 17, 2015

 

DVD_Doctor_Who_Last_Christmas The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) and Clara (Jenny Coleman) must help scientists plagued by crab-like creatures at a North Pole Scientific Station with the help of Santa (Nick Frost) and his elves.

Readers of this blog will know that I am a big fan of Doctor Who as well as the comedic characters normally played by Nick Frost. In [easyazon_link identifier=”B00QHND1BO” locale=”US” tag=”rabidreaders-20″]Doctor Who: Last Christmas[/easyazon_link] the actor takes a darker interpretation of an iconic character.

 

 

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The Hebrew Hammer (2003)

Movie Released: November 16, 2004

 

 

The Hebrew Hammer
The Hebrew Hammer

Santa’s son is on a mission to eradicate Hanukah so The Hebrew Hammer teams up with the Kwanzaa Liberation Front to stop his evil plan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There’s something really fun about a movie that doesn’t pretend to be anything but what it is – absolutely ridiculous. The stereotypes are plentiful and unapologetic and the jokes just awful but the result was a truly hilarious film. The take no prisoners style of comedy reminds me of the great Mel Brooks but  [easyazon_link identifier=”B0002WZTQQ” locale=”US” tag=”rabidreaders-20″]The Hebrew Hammer[/easyazon_link] has a unique flavor all its own.

Watching one of the opening scenes in which young Mordechai’s (Grant Rosenmeyer) dreidel is crushed by Santa Claus and then the jolly old elf gives the young Jew the finger, I wonder how the movie would go over released in the Facebook age. Everyone and their grandmother is on Facebook and every holiday you can set your clock by posts touting the War on Christmas. That the bad guy is named Damien Claus (not to mentioned played by Andy Dick) screams that one should leave their preconceptions at the door and just enjoy the wonderful and crazy stupidity for 90 minutes. Savvy watchers will maybe take something away from how crazy it is that Damien wants December for Christmas and to eradicate all other celebrations. It only makes sense for Mordechai to team up with the other religious organizations to hilarious result.

Mordechai’s love interest is played by the fabulous Judy Greer who, I think, is one of the best comedy actors today. She’s not always permitted to be pretty or the coquette in movies but she played it to advantage in [easyazon_link identifier=”B0002WZTQQ” locale=”US” tag=”rabidreaders-20″]The Hebrew Hammer[/easyazon_link]. She’s a classic Jewish American Princess with a heavy dose of bravado and bad ass that this actor does well. I’ve been a fan of Adam Goldberg since the “Dazed and Confused” days. Goldberg has a good comedic timing and seems to have fun in the role which is fitting with a subject so stretching the bonds of taste. Nora Dunn and Rachel Dratch also have roles in the film.

In short, [easyazon_link identifier=”B0002WZTQQ” locale=”US” tag=”rabidreaders-20″]The Hebrew Hammer[/easyazon_link] was a delightfully fun movie with a few cringe moments. Watched in the spirit in which its intended, [easyazon_link identifier=”B0002WZTQQ” locale=”US” tag=”rabidreaders-20″]The Hebrew Hammer[/easyazon_link]  is a classic addition to any holiday library.

 

The Hebrew Hammer is available as a DVD, Blu-ray and on Amazon Instant Video:

Amazon U.S.Amazon U.K.Amazon Canada

Title The Hebrew Hammer
Director Johnathan Kesselman
Actors Adam Goldberg, Andy Dick, Judy Greer,
Mario Van Peebles, Peter Coyote
Length 1 hour and 25 minutes
Rating R
DVD Release November 16, 2012

The Hogfather by Terry Pratchett

The_HogfatherIn the Discworld, it is Hogswatch Eve and children are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the Hogfather. Someone doesn’t want the Hogfather to make his scheduled rounds and hires the Guild of Assassins to kill the jolly, fat man. Against the fierce Mr. Teatime of the Guide of Assassins can anyone win? Can Hogswatch be saved?

 

 

 

 

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