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A Christmas Gift

3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  57 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Visiting his grandparents on their rural Michigan farm, thirteen-year-old James and his grandfather share a seasonal adventure that tests their family ties and renews their faith in traditional values. Reissue.
Paperback, 246 pages
Published August 1st 1995 by St Martins Mass Market Paper (first published 1977)
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This is one of my all-time favorite stories to read in the winter. I read my original copy so many times that it finally fell apart. It's taken me years to hunt down another one--and I just finished rereading it.

This would be a good holiday read for anyone sixth grade and older (or could be read to someone perhaps in the third or fourth grade). For an adult, it could be read in a day or a weekend, easily. It is defintely worth the effort of hunting down a copy of this book for yourself, and per
Jim Esten
A lovely Christmas story.
Miles Swarthout
A Christmas Gift is a reissue of a Doubleday novella originally published in 1977 under the title The Melodeon. The 1978 TV-Movie for CBS starring Joanne Woodward, Eva Marie Saint and Jason Robards was much altered from the original story and appeared under the title A Christmas To Remember. A condensed version of this same story also appeared in a Good Housekeeping December holiday issue under a 3rd title, "Journey Into Christmas." Finally Glendon and St. Martin's Press realized any Christmas s ...more
The season is Christmas, the place is a remote Michigan farm during the Great Depression, and the miracles are many and wondrous, from a city boy's initiation into the marvels of nature to a thrilling journey that leads to a strange encounter with an ancestor long dead. A Christmas Gift is a remembrance of the American past and of the love, sacrifice, and devotion that unite four generations of a remarkable family. On a stormy Christmas Eve, young James and his old grandfather decide to give the ...more

This Depression era story is anything but depressing: rich in hope, humor and intergenerationl discovery this charmer was originally
published as "THE MELODEON"--a small household organ. Thirtteen-year-old James has been shipped out to his grandparents' farm in Michigan, when his Philadelphia parents can no longer afford to provide for him. This city boy has a lot to learn in a rural setting, but he comes of age that special, unfortgettable Christmas Eve--when he learn
One of my favorite books is Swarthout's, Bless the Beasts and the Children, so when my mom had A Christmas Gift among her many Christmas books this holiday season, I thought I'd give it a read. I enjoyed the story. Swarthout has a knack for telling stories from the views of coming of age boys. This was a quick read and a nice, uplifting Christmas tale if you are looking for one.
This us a coming of age story set in the depression. A young man and his grandfather decide to carry out the Christmas wish of the grandmother - to give their small rural church their organ. After she falls asleep the boy and his grandfather start the journey in a raging snow storm using a tractor and stone boat that is able to plow through the snow but not without incidents.

This is a sweet story of love and miracles and growing up.
Quick, fun read about a boy sent to live with his grandparents on a farm during the depression. He and his grandpa, in order to please and surprise his grandma deliver an organ in the middle of a severe snow storm on Christmas eve. I liked the cleverness of the author's writing.
Chris Lindsay
I read this book when I was a teenager and remember loving it very much. Upon reading it again for my bookclub, it was apparent why I enjoyed it so much.

It's a short read, with the feel of a modern (1920s-30s era Michigan) fairy tale. The characters are few and are not well-developed. But this isn't the type of story where that is needed.

The main character, 13 year old James, helps his grandfather throughout an adventure-filled, night-time blizzard on Christmas Eve. And the experience allows t
A nice Christmas story. I have had this for a while and thought I has read it, but the ending was a surprise--so maybe I didn't finish it last time? This is a pleasant Christmas story to read with kids over the week or so before or around Chrismtas.

It was a surprise to leqarn that it is the same author who wrote Bless the Beasts and the Children. Long live the Bedwetters! I think of them whenever I read or hear about 'canned hunts' such as those at Savannah Dhu east of here--makes my blood boil.
Sylvi A
A lovely and endearing read not just for Christmas but the entire year through. A touching tale for all ages about how a young boy sees love through so many different ways, his grandparents, the neighbors, and an unexpected surprise visitor. Love seeps through its pages. Go ahead feel a little unconditional love today!
This is a short, sweet (yet a little heavy handed in message) Christmas story about a boy who is sent to live with his grandparents during the Great Depression. The main character was a little naive but had a sort of school-boy charm. It was a pretty good book.
Such a sweet story, and so nice to have a quick little feel good read during the busy times.
A wonderful story!!!! (I think it's true!)
One of my favorite Christmas stories!
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Glendon Fred Swarthout was an American writer. Some of his best known novels were made into films of the same title, Where the Boys Are, The Shootist and They Came To Cordura.

Also wrote under Glendon Fred Swarthout. Twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction.

More about Glendon Swarthout...
The Homesman Bless the Beasts and Children The Shootist They Came to Cordura Where the Boys Are

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