Thursday, November 29, 2012

Book Review - Christmas Lights


Christmas Lights

By: Christine Pisera Naman
Publisher: Doubleday Books
Publication Date: October 2007
ISBN: 978-0-385-52245-8
Reviewed by: Diane Lunsford
Review Date: November 30, 2012

Christine Pisera Naman’s Christmas Lights is a series of vignettes with nuances and tone signature to holiday spirit. However, the overall message is one that resonates throughout the year. Each vignette has been carefully written, assembled, and delivered with the collective intent to inspire. Ms. Naman has treated her audience to a cast of credible characters. A familial story, her fictional characters have specific traits and identities that make them real-life believable. The mother, Katherine, is wise and has a demonstrative strength and unflappable faith. She is faced with the dwindling lucidity of her husband of fifty-plus years. His increasing dementia is an ever-present companion that resides between the two.

Katherine has six children ranging in age from sixteen to forty-six - all girls. She wears her matriarchal role well. Ms. Naman cleverly devotes a stand-alone vignette for each girl who is presented with challenges ranging from first love to life changing occurrences. Yet she limits obvious information and entices the reader to interact and formulate his or her own conclusions as to how each character will fare once all is said and done. Naman directs her pen with determination as she strings the vignettes together on the common theme of the story: hope. Her fluid style provides instant comfort and ease for the reader to relax into an unforced cadence.

I am a child of five and perhaps coming from a larger family, the connection to this story was instant; particularly because of its familial elements. Christmas has always been a time of reflection for me; especially the premise of family and its coming together. It is a time to set aside differences and rejuvenate hope. I think Ms. Naman has similar views because of her creation of this collection of lovely, holiday-themed vignettes. This story shines like a bright light of hope and clarity likened to that of the North Star. Well done, Ms. Naman, for your sound message of faith that hope consistently delivers.

Quill Says: Christmas Lights is a stocking stuffer treasure that can be read any time of the year.