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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Uncle Eben's Christmas...Review

About the book:
Unlike Ebenezer Scrooge, Eben doesn't mind Christmas. Actually it gives his business the extra year-end boost he's come to expect. Unfortunately he's an atheist and has little toleration for “Christ” in Christmas. This year he is forbidding his employees to greet the customers with “Merry Christmas,” and is insisting that they say “Happy Holidays” instead. As Christmas draws near, a battle begins to brew in his soul. Coworkers, relatives, customers, almost everyone seems to be against his line of thinking.

Mrs. Muddleheim, his secretary, is a constant reminder of his lack of spirituality. Bethany, his favorite cashier, balks at not saying “Merry Christmas” to the customers. Pastor Edwards, preaching at a cantata appears to be directing his message solely at him. Hannah, his sister, and her family also seem to be part of the same conspiracy to convert him. Ginger, his niece, quotes the Bible to him. And Charles, his brother-in-law, easily rebuffs his counterattack against the Bible.

Rejecting the Gospel when he was a teen, Eben grew up and went onto start a successful business. Now he scoffs at anything religious, attributing his success to his own efforts. While he's not happy about his sister's Christian beliefs, his love for his niece and nephew occasionally has him attending church services when they perform.

Uncle Eben's Christmas looks at the state of an unbeliever who profits from Christmas, yet gives none of the glory to God. It's the story of one man who is surrounded by Christians who he finds as poor, deluded, misguided individuals, yet is in his own bleak state about to get the wake-up call of a lifetime!

In a climatic dream, Eben meets an angelic being that takes him to the past, present, and future. These troubling experiences open his eyes to an apparently bleak future. But maybe there is still hope...

I love Christmas.  I love the opportunity it gives us to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. I love Charles Dickens' story, A Christmas Carol and Ebeneezer Scrooge's amazing transformation.  I suppose it's inevitable that stories like this pop up every Christmas. And this one is an interesting, if not extreme, modern day take on that same story. 

I liked Uncle Eben's Christmas, but didn't love it.  I found it very preachy with all the talk of salvation and the unbeliever. Eben's sudden conversion is a bit convenient, but certainly the predictable ending.  While it won't end up on my must-read Christmas list, mainstream Christians will, no doubt, enjoy it.

Thanks to Arielle at Bring It On! Communications for the opportunity to review this book.  You can purchase your own copy here.

Read 12/10

* * * 
3/5 Stars

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