Synopses & Reviews
Christmas crept into Pine Cove like a creeping Christmas thing: dragging garland, ribbon, and sleigh bells, oozing eggnog, reeking of pine, and threatening festive doom like a cold sore under the mistletoe.
'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. It is the hap-hap-happiest time of the year, after all.
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.
Only Christopher Moore, the man who brought you the outrageous lost gospel Lamb and the hysterical fish tale Fluke could have devised a new holiday classic that tugs at the heartstrings and serves up a healthy slice of fruitcake to boot.
Move over, Charles Dickens it's Christopher Moore time.
"Hilarity abounds in Moore's latest satirical gem. Sleepy Pine Cove, Calif., is abuzz with Christmas spirit, but Lena Marquez is fed up with her despicable ex-husband, Dale Pearson. On his way home from playing Santa Claus at the local lodge, Dale spies sneaky Lena uprooting his Monterey pines; he pulls a gun on her, she lashes out with a shovel and oops! kills him. Seven-year-old Josh Barker, thinking he's just seen the murder of Santa, prays for a miracle to save Christmas. To Lena's rescue comes Tucker Case, a slimy, reformed Casanova and DEA pilot, who gives her an alibi and sweeps her off her feet. The marijuana-cultivating town constable, Theo Crowe, suspects foul play, but Tucker intervenes with a blackmail scheme to keep the crime buried. Meanwhile, there's a new arrival in town: the glowingly blond Archangel Raziel (last seen in Lamb) has come 'dirtside' on a 'miracle mission' involving Josh's wish and reviving the town's dearly departed. Pine Cove's biggest challenge surfaces as comically reanimated zombies begin to rise and feast on the living, and a huge El Nino-induced storm swirls. This little slice of perverse Christmas cheer is enough to make even the most cynical Scrooge guffaw. Agent, Nicholas Ellison. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Mr. Moore is clearly the unhinged Hiaasen. He's Daily Show-funny and willing to subvert anything, even the 'pile of dead Kringle' that sets this fractured fairy tale in motion." Janet Maslin, The New York Times
"Christopher Moore's prose is hyper but never shticky, and his compassion for this island of misfits shines as bright as the samurai sword wielded by a schizophrenic warrior woman on a not-so-silent Christmas Eve. (Grade: A)" Entertainment Weekly
Little Joshua Barker is sure that he saw Santa take a shovel to the head, and now the seven-year-old prays for Santa to come back from the dead. There's an angel waiting in the wings, but he's botched his sacred mission and sent the residents of Pine Cove headlong into Christmas chaos.
About the Author
Christopher Moore is the author of twelve previous novels: Practical Demonkeeping, Coyote Blue, Bloodsucking Fiends, Island of the Sequined Love Nun, The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove, Lamb, Fluke, The Stupidest Angel, A Dirty Job, You Suck, Fool, and Bite Me. He lives in San Francisco, California.
Listen to an interview with Christopher Moore