Happy endings are hard-earned in Owen Parry’s ”American Christmas Stories,” and gifts don’t come in tidily wrapped packages. If you’re really lucky, you’ll be rewarded with a lump of coal. That’s what one secret Santa (a bighearted, small-town Pennsylvania cop) delivers to freezing, out-of-work miners in the 1887-set ”Coal & Iron.” In ”The Christmas Joe,” a Depression era waitress gets a baby — and the Virgin Mary she ain’t. Parry has an almost Dickensian eye for detail, and a light hand with religious themes. Also in Strike the Harp!, irreverently playful poems — tweaking the three kings, holiday shopping, and more — punctuate each short story.
Strike the Harp! Happy endings are hard-earned in Owen Parry's ''American Christmas Stories,'' and gifts don't come in tidily wrapped packages. If you're really lucky, ...Strike the Harp!FictionOwen Parry Happy endings are hard-earned in Owen Parry's ''American Christmas Stories,'' and gifts don't come in tidily wrapped packages. If you're really lucky, ...2004-12-06William Morrow
Genre: Fiction; Author: Owen Parry; Publisher: William Morrow
Posted December 6 2004 — 12:00 AM EST
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