Monday, 8 December 2014

The Christmas Shoes by Donna VanLiere

I love the song The Christmas Shows by Newsong so when I saw this book at my library I knew I just had to read it. I finished it back on November 30 and read it during The Christmas Spirit Readathon but have been crazybusy and am just now getting me review up. 

The book description:

Sometimes, the things that can change your life will cross your path in one instant-and then, in a fleeting moment, they're gone. But if you open your eyes, and watch carefully, you will believe.... 

Robert is a successful attorney who has everything in life-and nothing at all. Focused on professional achievement and material rewards, Robert is on the brink of losing his marriage. He has lost sight of his wife, Kate, their two daughters, and ultimately himself. Eight year old Nathan has a beloved mother, Maggie, whom he is losing to cancer. But Nathan and his family are building a simple yet full life, and struggling to hold onto every moment they have together. A chance meeting on Christmas Even brings Robert and Nathan together-he is shopping for a family he hardly knows and Nathan is shopping for a mother he is soon to lose. In this one encounter, their lives are forever altered as Robert learns an important lesson: sometimes the smallest things can make all the difference. The Christmas Shoes is a universal story of the deeper meaning of serendipity, a tale of our shared humanity, and of how a power greater than ourselves can shape, and even save, our lives.

I feel bad because I honestly didn't expect this book to be very good. I started it wondering if it was just some sort of media tie in to make the song more popular. It was good. So good that I found myself crying during much of it. I cried even though I knew what was coming.

I loved how both families were tied together. Maggie is a wonderful person and mother and it is easy to like her and care about her. All of the characters are likeable...well almost.

Robert is a jerk. He's stubborn and I'm still angry about the way he spoke to his mother. He wasn't too likable but I think maybe that may have been the point. He's a modern day Scrooge and they aren't really supposed to be likable. I did care about him enough to root for him to turn around his life and save his marriage.

The climatic part of the book where he meets Nathan in the store buying shoes didn't disappoint. It was a great scene and I can easily imagine the moment when Robert looked into Nathan's eyes and was a changed man.

What I hated the most was afterwards when his wife asks him "Why have you changed?' Robert actually says "I don't know."

Really? You don't know? Now I didn't expect him to tell his wife about the encounter in the store. I can understand why he might want to keep that to himself but I felt like he was lying to Kare when he says he doesn't know.

My favorite part of the book was the ending. I don't want to spoil it but I will say Robert and Nathan's paths cross again and it was the best part of the book.

My rating  Photobucket

This book was also made into a movie but I have yet to watch it. Hopefully I will get that done this month and write a movie review.

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