2015 Book #75 – Skipping Christmas by John Grisham

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Title: Skipping Christmas
Author: John Grisham
Date finished: 7/20/15
Genre: Fiction, Holiday
Publisher: DoubleDay
Publication Date: November 6, 2001
Pages in book: 177
Stand alone or series: Stand alone
Where I got the book from: Terryville Public Library

Blurb from the cover:

Imagine a year without Christmas. No crowded malls, no corny office parties, no fruitcakes, no unwanted presents. That’s just what Luther and Nora Krank have in mind when they decide that, just this once, they’ll skip the holiday altogether. Theirs will be the only house on Hemlock Street without a rooftop Frosty, they won’t be hosting their annual Christmas Eve bash, they aren’t even going to have a tree. They won’t need one, because come December 25 they’re setting sail on a Caribbean cruise. But as this weary couple is about to discover, skipping Christmas brings enormous consequences—and isn’t half as easy as they’d imagined.
A classic tale for modern times, Skipping Christmas offers a hilarious look at the chaos and frenzy that have become part of our holiday tradition.

My rating: 2.25 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I read this book for the Terryville Library’s Fiction Lover’s Book Discussion group discussion for this month (July). I went to my first book club discussion with this group last month (June) and I really enjoyed last month’s book and the discussion, I think it is a great group for me to participate in so I wanted to keep going. I have to say I am really looking forward to next month’s book (I Shall Be Near You) which has already been on my TBR list for awhile. Anyway so this month’s book was Skipping Christmas by John Grisham and I actually had already read this book when I was in Middle School and my Mom and I read it for a Mother-Daughter book discussion that we were part of at the time. In 2004 this book was actually made into a holiday film, Christmas with the Kranks, starring Tim Allen and Jamie Lee Curtis.
This book is amazingly frustrating to me. I felt that way the first time I read it and again when I saw the movie, and then again when I read it this time. I just get so mad about some of the blow back that the Kranks get as a consequence of telling people that they’re skipping Christmas. And really, what is so wrong with that? All they have for actual family is a daughter who they thought would be in Peru until the next Christmas. Really, what’s so wrong with treating themselves for one year and taking a cruise. And to be honest, how is it anyone else’s damn business what they decide to do with their holiday?? It really just gets me so fired up. I mean, yes it all turns out well in the end and the neighborhood assholes (excuse my French) band around the Kranks to make a nice homecoming for (surprise!) Blair and her fiance who call about 7 hours before they arrive (also ridiculously rude). But really I was still mad at everyone in that neighborhood in the end. If someone gave me that much hassle about putting a damn lighted snowman on my roof, I would’ve snapped way before then. If I don’t want a damn Frosty on my roof then I’m damn well not going to put one up there, I don’t care what any of my neighbors say. I pay the mortgage and I pay the taxes so you can get off my damn lawn. Also it kind of bothered me how much Luther talked about all these other women that he though were “hot” or “cute.” I don’t think I noticed that as much when I was younger but it is pretty creepy. Also why did they care whether Blair’s fiance was light skinned or dark skinned? What was up with that?
So as you can probably tell, I don’t especially like this book. I think people should have been up in the Krank’s business a bit less and not been so intrusive. Also I think Nora and even Luther are annoying main characters. Nora should’ve been a little nicer to Luther in the end, yes the whole cruise thing was his idea but she was all about it just the day before. And Luther should’ve been ogling young women in stringy bikinis a little less, or like not at all.

The bottom line: I know this is a pretty popular book (and movie) but I just find it so ridiculously frustrating. I would say people should try it but as you can tell, this is not my favorite book at all.

Link to author website
Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

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