Title: One Imperfect Christmas
Author: Myra Johnson
Genre: Christmas/Christian/Women’s Fiction
Graphic designer Natalie Pearce faces the most difficult Christmas of her life. For almost a year, her mother has lain in a nursing home, the victim of a massive stroke, and Natalie blames herself for not being there when it happened. Worse, she’s allowed the monstrous load of guilt to drive a wedge between her and everyone she loves—most of all her husband Daniel. Her marriage is on the verge of dissolving, her prayer life is suffering, and she’s one Christmas away from hitting rock bottom.
Junior-high basketball coach Daniel Pearce is at his wit’s end. Nothing he’s done has been able to break through the wall Natalie has erected between them. And their daughter Lissa’s adolescent rebellion isn’t helping matters. As Daniel’s hope reaches its lowest ebb, he wonders if this Christmas will spell the end of his marriage and the loss of everything he holds dear.
My Thoughts: ONE IMPERFECT CHRISTMAS is not a light and fluffy read – but it is not doom and gloom either. I spent most of my time just wanting to slap Natalie, the mental anguish she put herself through and her reasoning just didn’t ring true for me. I just didn’t get how Natalie and Daniel wouldn’t unload their real thoughts to each other – even in anger they held back. However, author Myra Johnson had a very good supporting cast and every other character in the book was likeable and believable and they made the book for me. Natalie seemed unable to grasp the fact that her father was losing his wife of 50 years and her brother was losing his mother; they had a much more realistic look at events, though the reader had no doubts that they were just as distressed. It was all me, me, me with Natalie. Johnson’s writing style is easy to read and as she switched between the points of view there was no jarring of the senses. Natalie does have a crisis of faith, and this is handled very well and the Christian aspects are not shoved down your throat. Overall it was a good read and a warm uplifting end, despite the sadness, rounded off the story.
Rating: C – Above average. Was very readable and enjoyable.
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