Christmas is just around the corner.
I wish I hadn't said that, because it reminds me of everything I have to do to get ready, and I am running out of time!!
Anyway, I thought I'd share some of my favorite funny and off-beat holiday books with you, just in case you haven't seen these before.
1. The Hogfather, by Terry Pratchett
"Who would want to harm Discworld's most beloved
icon? Very few things are held sacred in this twisted, corrupt,
heartless -- and oddly familiar -- universe, but the Hogfather is one of
them. Yet here it is, Hogswatchnight, that most joyous and acquisitive
of times, and the jolly old, red-suited gift-giver has vanished without a
trace. And there's something shady going on involving an uncommonly
psychotic member of the Assassins' Guild and certain representatives of
Ankh-Morpork's rather extensive criminal element. Suddenly Discworld's
entire myth system is unraveling at an alarming rate. Drastic measures
must be taken, which is why Death himself is taking up the reins of the
fat man's vacated sleigh . . . which, in turn, has Death's level-headed
granddaughter, Susan, racing to unravel the nasty, humbuggian mess
before the holiday season goes straight to hell and takes everyone along
This is also a made-for-TV movie, that is quite good.
2. The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror, by Christopher Moore
"'Twas the night (okay,
more like the week) before Christmas, and all through the tiny community
of Pine Cove, California, people are busy buying, wrapping, packing,
and generally getting into the holiday spirit.
But not everybody
is feeling the joy. Little Joshua Barker is in desperate need of a
holiday miracle. No, he's not on his deathbed; no, his dog hasn't run
away from home. But Josh is sure that he saw Santa take a shovel to the
head, and now the seven-year-old has only one prayer: Please, Santa,
come back from the dead.
But hold on! There's an angel waiting in
the wings. (Wings, get it?) It's none other than the Archangel Raziel
come to Earth seeking a small child with a wish that needs granting.
Unfortunately, our angel's not sporting the brightest halo in the bunch,
and before you can say "Kris Kringle," he's botched his sacred mission
and sent the residents of Pine Cove headlong into Christmas chaos,
culminating in the most hilarious and horrifying holiday party the town
has ever seen.
Move over, Charles Dickens -- it's Christopher Moore time."
3. Unholy Night, by Seth Grahame-Smith
"From the author of the New York Times bestselling Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, comes UNHOLY NIGHT, the next evolution in dark historical revisionism.
an iconic part of history's most celebrated birth. But what do we
really know about the Three Kings of the Nativity, besides the fact that
they followed a star to Bethlehem bearing strange gifts? The Bible has
little to say about this enigmatic trio. But leave it to Seth
Grahame-Smith, the brilliant and twisted mind behind Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies to take a little mystery, bend a little history, and weave an epic tale.
Grahame-Smith's telling, the so-called "Three Wise Men" are infamous
thieves, led by the dark, murderous Balthazar. After a daring escape
from Herod's prison, they stumble upon the famous manger and its newborn
king. The last thing Balthazar needs is to be slowed down by young
Joseph, Mary and their infant. But when Herod's men begin to slaughter
the first born in Judea, he has no choice but to help them escape to
It's the beginning of an adventure that will see them
fight the last magical creatures of the Old Testament; cross paths with
biblical figures like Pontius Pilate and John the Baptist; and finally
deliver them to Egypt. It may just be the greatest story never told."
4. The Latke Who Couldn't Stop Screaming: A Christmas Story, by Lemony Snicket
This one is for kids and adults.
"Latkes are potato
pancakes served at Hanukkah, and Lemony Snicket is an alleged children’s
author. For the first time in literary history, these two elements are
combined in one book. A particularly irate latke is the star of The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming,
but many other holiday icons appear and even speak: flashing colored
lights, cane-shaped candy, a pine tree. Santa Claus is briefly discussed
as well. The ending is happy, at least for some. People who are
interested in any or all of these things will find this book so
enjoyable it will feel as though Hanukkah were being celebrated for
several years, rather than eight nights."
5. And of course,the book that inspired the classic, hilarious movie, A Christmas Story- In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash, by Jean Shepherd
"A beloved, bestselling classic of humorous and nostalgic Americana, reissued in a strikingly designed paperback edition.
Garrison Keillor and Spalding Gray there was Jean Shepherd: a master
monologist and writer who spun the materials of his all-American
childhood into immensely resonant--and utterly hilarious--works of comic
art. In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash represents
one of the peaks of his achievement, a compound of irony, affection, and
perfect detail that speaks across generations.
In God We Trust,
Shepherd's wildly witty reunion with his Indiana hometown, disproves
the adage "You can never go back." Bending the ear of Flick, his
childhood-buddy-turned-bartender, Shepherd recalls passionately his
genuine Red Ryder BB gun, confesses adolescent failure in the arms of
Junie Jo Prewitt, and relives a story of man against fish that not even
Hemingway could rival. From pop art to the World's Fair, Shepherd's
subjects speak with a universal irony and are deeply and unabashedly
grounded in American Midwestern life, together rendering a wonderfully
nostalgic impression of a more innocent era when life was good, fun was
clean, and station wagons roamed the earth.
A comic genius who
bridged the gap between James Thurber and David Sedaris, Shepherd may
have accomplished for Holden, Indiana, what Mark Twain did for Hannibal,
Happy reading, Bite Club. I hope you manage to get all of your holiday shopping done in time. Now, I really have to go wrap presents.