by Kathi Macias
My rating: 2.5 - 3 stars
Publication Date: August 3, 2015
Publisher: New Hope Publishers
Genre: Christian Fiction
Print Length: 224 pages
Return to Christmas beautifully blends the two struggling worlds of a former marine and a little boy with attachment disorder. Former Marine Chet is having a hard time adjusting to civilian life. He doesn't need help. He needs employment. He doesn't have issues. The little boy his friends adopted has issues. But there is something about that little boy that draws him. Will the events leading up to this Christmas be able to melt his soldier heart or will he spiral into a dark depression?
Return to Christmas by Kathi Macias
What could inspire a miracle of Christmas, the season, thoughts of love and hope more than reading of an ex-soldier suffering from PTSD and a loss of his self-esteem who finds a kindred spirit in a toddler whose short life has been one of loss and withdrawal?
Definitely a spiritually inspired read, Kathi Macias’ Return to Christmas had the potential to blend the power of faith and the misery of misfortune. Ms. Macias has a wonderful gift for bringing each character to life "for the moment," but failed to dig deep enough to flesh them out.
I wanted to reach out to Chet, who felt worthless, damaged from his tours in Afghanistan and the horrors he survived. Throughout, his wife, while loving him deeply never conveyed that message by opening a safe channel for him to talk, or by listening for the messages he has hidden beneath his actions. She was always praying on it, leaving the work to God. I wanted to ask her if she had ever really listened to the song Onward Christian Soldiers, and the concept of taking action herself, that is how involved I became and how disappointed I was in her character. Prayer is a wonderful thing, asking for guidance is a wonderful thing, but actions speak louder than words.
For me, this tale fell short and left me feeling like I was left standing in the shallow end of the Christian pool. I want to feel inspired. The synopsis leaves us to believe the story is one centered around a man and a toddler in their own personal Hell, while this is only a blip on the pages. I rarely leave negative reviews, but the topics handled in this read are far too important and real, the main character far too absorbed in waiting for a higher power to do her work for her. 2.5 Stars
I received this copy from new Hope Publishers in exchange for my honest review.