Saturday, November 01, 2008

Skipping Christmas - My Review

As soon as you hear the name John Grisham, the first thing that comes to the mind is court room dramas, and legal cliff hangers, where mavericks suddenly pull out rabbits from their hats and do the unimaginable!
However, over the years, I guess Grisham also has been evolving out, and a proof for that was the beautifully poignant 'A Painted House' (2001).
I've been seeing 'Skipping Christmas' on the shelves of our bookstore for quite a while now; but seriously, did not pick it up, as it did not match the image I carry with the Grisham name.
A few days ago, out of sheer frustration - of not finding anything I wanted to read - I picked this up, and it certainly is one of my better decisions!
As the name suggests, the book is the story of the Kranks, who decide to skip Christmas one year. Their only daughter leaves for Peru to serve with the Peace Corps, and Luther and Nora Krank decide to give a heave-ho to the whole Christmas experience and choose to go on a cruise instead that week!
(This part of the story is mentioned on the blurb of the book too - that's why I boldly wrote that down) What happens next is what the book is about, and you certainly should read.
The book has also been adapted into a major motion picture - Christmas with the Kranks - starring Tim Allen and Jamie Lee Curtis, and was released world wide in 2004.
Actually, the story is not from the same Grisham Genre. In fact, it is so varied that you think at times, did Grisham actually write this? This is not the typical thriller kind of page turner, but still gets you flipping through the pages at one go. There is no question that Grisham is a master - not just of legal thrillers - but of the art of story telling in general. As with all great writers, he too has a superb sense of observation, and the reader is joyously put through all the eccentricities and joys of the festive season. Though not a thriller, the book does have its unexpected moments, right through till the end.
After I finished reading the book, I've been wondering; what genre does this come into. Family?Comedy? Coming of age? Feel Good? 
Finally, I've come to the conclusion that this is not a book that falls into any of these categories. Instead, it is a superb story with immensely lovable characters, and a beautiful angle on the spirit of the festive season. One thing is for certain - You'll certainly smile, and feel full at the end of the novel.
I'm getting 'Playing for Pizza' next!

1 comment:

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