Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Christmas Reading ~ Part One

Christmas is a time of both past and present and often the two are imperfectly blended. As we step into its nowness we often look behind.

At this time of the year, I love to indulge in a little Christmas reading. It is one indulgence that I don't have to feel guilty about, as it is calorie-free!

This year's delights include two books that are new to me. The first is Alistair Macleod's To Every Thing There Is A Season ~ A Cape Breton Christmas Story.

I thought that I would share a little about this with you. He writes in the introduction about the beauty of the Island (Cape Breton):

'Inland were high hills and a loch running in from the sea that looked like a sleeve of gold in the afternoon sun. There were trout and salmon streams lined by sweet-smelling alder, water meadows and valleys graced by elms as stately as those in the shires of southern England. The coast was rugged with grey granite or red sandstone cliffs, splendid with promontories, fog-bound in spring when the drift ice came down from Newfoundland and Labrador, tranquil in summer, and in the autumns thunderous with evidences of the power of the Lord.'

He writes about life in an extended family, as an eleven year-old boy of the 1940s: awaiting Christmas and the sense of excitement and anticipation as the big day approaches. It is a fascinating insight into a bygone world and a story that is best read aloud. I know that this is one book that I will enjoy reading every Christmas.