Christmas Book Review: Wishin’ and Hopin’

Wishin' and Hopin': A Christmas StoryWishin’ and Hopin’: A Christmas Story by Wally Lamb
Publisher: Harper
Release Date: 2009
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Publisher’s Description:

It is 1964. LBJ and Lady Bird are in the White House, Meet the Beatles is on everyone’s turntable, and ten-year-old Felix Funicello (distant cousin of the iconic Annette!) is doing his best to navigate fifth grade—easier said than done when scary movies still give you nightmares and you bear a striking resemblance to a certain adorable cartoon boy. But there are several things young Felix can depend on: the birds and bees are puzzling, television is magical, and this is one Christmas he’s never going to forget.

This book is being touted as a Christmas story but it’s more than just that. It’s about life for kids in a parochial school in the 1960s. There are tons of cultural references – if you grew up in the 60s, I think you’ll enjoy the trip down memory lane.

The characters are familiar archetypes . Felix is a sweet, naive boy who is trying (and failing) to be as worldly as his best friend Lonny. Lonny is a tough kid, from a poor family. There’s also Rosalie, a snotty teacher’s pet who Felix despises. Then there are characters who are new and funny, like girl whose family has just moved to the small town from Russia. And the French Canadian replacement teacher who is just trying to put on a fancy Christmas show with the best of intentions.

Wishin’ and Hopin’ is a cute and funny story. It’s great if you’re in the mood for a quick little holiday read.

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  • rhapsodyinbooks

    I should try this one. I have yet to read a book by him, and this sounds like a great place to start.