Synopses & Reviews
Does the thought of mistletoe give you hives?
Does the sound of jingling bells instill fear in your heart?
Do you hide under the covers from the day after Thanksgiving till New Year's Day?
And even if you love Christmas, do the hyperconsumerism, overindulgence, and tinsel-covered everything make you crazy?
If you said yes to any of these questions, this is the book for you. You are not alone. Everyone has a Christmas-nightmare story to tell. Some of the best writers around have gone through some of the worst Christmases ever. Their tales of holly-draped horror are gathered here for your amusement, from Neal Pollack's Christmas-ham disaster to the accidental Santahood of Joni Rodgers to Binnie Kirshenbaum's receiving what may be the worst gift ever given. And Stanley Bing gives us a peek at the lonely guy's Xmas feast. All this, plus many more recollections of Worst Noels past.
So pour yourself a glass of eggnog, chisel off a piece of rock-hard fruitcake, and curl up in the big comfy chair by the fireplace where the stockings have been hung with such care and settle in to read The Worst Noel.
"While everyone has his or her own holiday nightmare-the overcooked turkey, the undercooked ham, the Santa who drank too much, the worst gift given or received-we still love hearing about other people's disasters. Mice eating up the lovingly home-baked tree ornaments; kids dragging you through the Christmas Loft Holiday Emporium's 'holiday fumes-a cross between Pine-Sol, Atomic Fireballs, and clove cigarettes'; even 'the Christmas I found out I wasn't Christian'-it's all so much fun when it's happening to someone else. After reading John Marchese's saga of a 'dry serial church-going' Christmas with his born-again prospective in-laws, or Cynthia Kaplan's 'Jew's Christmas in Vermont' with dead deer splattered all over the family car, our own holiday problems seem more manageable. About half the stories have a Jewish slant (such as those by Valerie Frankel, Binnie Kirshenbaum and Amy Krouse Rosenthal), and all but one (Anne Giardini's depressing tale of her dying mother) play on the humor of a disastrous holiday experience. The best one-Ann Patchett's 'Birthdays'-avoids the clichés (how Jews do or don't deal with Christmas, the excesses of Christmas kitsch, etc.) and tells how her stepfather mangled each of the family's Christmases. This would make a nifty gift for the Scrooge on book buyers' lists." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Forget the fruitcake and bring this quirky book to your holiday hosts this season." Chicago Tribune
"High notes like Ann Patchett's 'Birthdays' make this a fine stocking stuffer for naughty cranks everywhere." Entertainment Weekly
"Even the most resolute humbugs will laugh aloud at this riotous holiday collection written by 18 of today's top writers." Marie Claire
Great writers capture their holiday horror stories in this collection that will thrill and delight all.
It's that time of year again andndash; the holiday season. Between checkout lines that stretch on forever, the
office party hangover, battles with traffic, and delayed flights, what better could you do than curl up with The Worst Noel and laugh your holiday aggravation away?
This collection features an eclectic mix of writers with playful, often dark, humour as the common thread. There's Marian Keyes on preparing dinner for her Irish family of 13, when she's never cooked a day in her life and only owns four chairs; and Mike Albo and his romantic Christmasandndash;inandndash;Paris dream, which turns into
a nightmare after an accident leaves him with a bloodied cross on his forehead. There's Neal Pollack,
a Jew who cooks a holiday ham for his devout Catholic motherandndash;inandndash;law, only to have a drunken brawl ensue; and the festive car ride that Cynthia Kaplan takes, which goes astray when she hits a deer and 'Donner is Dead' becomes her family's holiday story.
About the Author
Comprising the collective are: Cynthia Kaplan, John Marchese, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Catherine Newman, Ann Patchett, Joni Rodgers, Anne Giardini, Stanley Bing, Louis Bayard, Valerie Frankel, Mike Albo, Marian Keyes, Binnie Kirshenbaum, Mitchell Symons, Neal Pollack, Roger Director, Cintra Wilson, and Elizabeth Noble.