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8-Bit Christmas

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3.96  ·  Rating details ·  170 ratings  ·  52 reviews
It's 1980-something and all nine-year-old Jake Doyle wants for Christmas is a Nintendo Entertainment System. No Jose Canseco rookie card, no GI Joe hovercraft, no Teddy friggin' Ruxpin--just Nintendo. But when a hyperactive Shih Tzu is accidentally crushed to death by a forty-two-inch television set and every parent in town blames Nintendo, it's up to Jake to take matters ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published November 1st 2013 by DB Press
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3.96  · 
Rating details
 ·  170 ratings  ·  52 reviews


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Wendi
Excellent Book!

Very nostalgic! As a child of the 1980s, the whole book was a trip down memory lane. Engaging and fun. I thoroughly enjoyed it. For those who were there, this book is an experience, and reminds us of a simpler time when video games were still new and kids played outside. Magnificent ending! Definitely recommend this book to anyone who grew up in the 80s, especially those who caught Nintendo fever!
Bean
Dec 13, 2015 rated it liked it
3.5, A Christmas Story for the child of the 80s. It was warm nostalgia, had holiday spirit without being sickly sweet. Fast fun read.
Trisha
Nov 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
***Thank you to NetGalley for providing this free ARC copy.

I put this on the "children's literature" shelf, even though it's narrated by an adult looking back on his Nintento-crazed childhood. But really I think it's a book adults would love more - particularly adults who were children of the '80s, like I was.

Story:
Narrator Jake is 9 years old when the first glorious grey Nintendo Entertainment System hits the market. The richest and most spoiled kid in town gets a Nintendo and all the other kid
...more
Desiree
Nov 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A very funny story! At one point, I was laughing so hard that I had tears running down my cheeks! In fact, it is still making me laugh!

The author takes us back to the 1980's and tells the story of a nine year old boy whose only goal in life is to score a Nintendo Entertainment System. Sure, he likes his baseball cards, his teacher and other things, but nothing else comes close to the Nintendo. When the rich kid in town is the only owner of the brand new system, he lords it over the rest of the b
...more
Hannah
Oct 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
A flashback in a book. I guess this is what our parents felt like when they watched A Christmas Story for the first time. All the little pop culture things that make you say "I remember that". This book was great, the banning of The Nintendo Entertainment System county wide, and all he wants for Christmas is a Nintendo. The schemes and the hijinks are hilarious, I hope they make a movie of this so I can watch A Christmas Story and this back to back.
Robert
Jul 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
While this book is certainly not the next 'A Christmas Carol,' it is definitely a unique work which manages to capture the spirit of the season. The characters are lovable, with all their quirks and are surely destined to bring back great memories from an era just as classic as Christmas itself.
Lisa
Dec 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Super fun fast read. Especially meaningful to Batavians as there are numerous references to our town. Between all the town references and all of the 80's references it was super fun.
Zach Koenig
Mar 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Pretty much everyone has seen "A Christmas Story", right? Well, swap out Ralphie's Red Ryder BB gun (1950s) for a Nintendo Entertainment System (1980s), and that is the gist of "8-Bit Christmas".

For a basic plot summary, this book tells the story of Jake Doyle a mid-80s grade schooler who wants a Nintendo more than anything else in the world. Of course, a series of events transpire against his one Christmas wish, leaving the fate of his NES quest undecided until the final pages.

Though I am actua
...more
Kurt
Aug 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book started off strong, but soon you could see that the story was heavily influenced by Christmas Story. Really seemed to have similar themes throughout. I did enjoy the book, but a lot of that was influenced from the Chicago references (although not sure how any Cub fan could spell Ryan Sandberg's name).
Dan Martin
Jan 30, 2019 rated it liked it
It tries to be A Christmas Story set in the 80's where Ralphie wants a Nintendo for Christmas instead of a Red Ryder BB Gun. It also tries to be a nostalgic story, but it doesn't quite hit the target on either point. A times the book reads like Wikipedia entries about classic NES games.
Slytano
Feb 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I'm not sure what happened at the end of this book.
Mary Louise
Feb 17, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
3.5 stars.
Amanda G. (Nellie and Co.
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites-2013
I think when it comes down to Christmas themed books, you either love them, or you hate them, and for me, it's almost always a love. I can't help it. I love reading about other peoples family festivities, and their collapsing trees, and the presents they receive; it makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside and that's exactly how 8-Bit Christmas made me feel. And fear not my fellow 90's friends, just because it's an 80's styled nostalgic trip down memory lane, doesn't mean you won't find things to eas ...more
Sara
Nov 22, 2013 rated it liked it
First, I'd like to thank Netgalley for the ARC.

8-Bit Christmas follows nine-year-old Jake, who just really wants a Nintendo for Christmas. It's the 80's, it's the cool new thing, and only the richest, most annoying kid in town has one. There's a fierce competition to use his Nintendo, culminating in children trading in their favorite toys for just a few minutes or hours of play. Jake's had enough of this nonsense and decides he's going to get his own Nintendo by whatever means necessary. He part
...more
Romancing the Book
Feb 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christmas, fiction, humor
Reviewed by Marissa
Book provided by NetGalley for review
Review originally posted at Romancing the Book

Reminiscent of the movie A Christmas Story, 8-Bit Christmas is an up-dated version for the (almost) computer age as 8 year old Jake plots and schemes to get the brand new Nintendo Entertainment System for Christmas. By the time Nintendos came out in the early 1980′s I was a new mother so I bypassed that era altogether; however, I related to being a kid and wanting something so badly that I thoug
...more
Chris N
Nov 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Timmy Kleen is the neighborhood rich kid. He gets what he wants and one day for his birthday he strikes kid gold, the newest thing around, a Nintendo Entertainment system.

It’s the late 80’s and Jack Doyle is 9 and his jaw drops, along with most of the neighborhood boys, when he sees what Timmy got for his birthday. Timmy announces that on Saturday mornings 10 boys, only 10, will be picked to spend the day with him playing with his new Nintendo. So starts the jockeying for prime positions in Timm
...more
Josh
Dec 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
It can be hard to write a good Christmas book. There are already plenty of classic stories, not mention having to try and avoid classic Christmas story tropes that could relegate the book to being considered Christmas white noise. Couple these challenges with tackling your first book, and one begins to admire what Kevin Jakubowski accomplished with his debut novel, "8-Bit Christmas," a fun, nostalgic romp through days of Christmas past.

The story follows Jake Doyle's quest to get a Nintendo for C
...more
Michelle
Nov 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
With the announcement of the release of the BRAND NEW Nintendo 8-bit Entertainment System, Jake begins a quest to obtain this highly coveted game system and become the envy of his friends and neighbors. But, the arrival of the game at the home of another boy in town has unintended consequences, and Jake finds that his quest is being thwarted by not only his own parents, but by all of the adults in town! In the process, Jake must deal with everything from school bullies to an incredibly competiti ...more
Ramie
Dec 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
8-Bit Christmas is to children of the 80s what "A Christmas Story" was to children of the whatever decade that was (30s, 40s?). This time though there’s no Red Ryder BB gun. The only gun that any kid cares about is the one that allows you to play Duck Hunt on the Nintendo.

Timmy Kleen is the only kid in all of Batavia to have a Nintendo. One kid. No one really likes Timmy and yet here they find themselves begging to get inside his house. Jake Doyle doesn’t want to spend his life waiting in a lin
...more
Bruce Gargoyle
Full review at http://thebookshelfgargoyle.wordpress...

I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Ten Second Synopsis:
Go on a journey with Jake Doyle, nine-year-old of the 80s, as he struggles to attain for Christmas the apparently unattainable and most desirable product of his life so far...the Nintendo Entertainment System.

This was bordering on a six-star read for me. Jakubowski has created a story that perfectly captures what it is to b
...more
Kathy
Nov 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
When you’re nine, in the 80’s, you want nothing more than the brand new Nintendo 8-Bit Entertainment System, and nothing will stand in your way of getting it for Christmas. Jake, like every other 9-year old, wants this present under the tree so bad that he can hardly contain his desire. Shortly before Christmas season one of the richer boys in town gets a Nintendo, and Jake and his whole crowd line up each Saturday to see who will be one of the lucky ones chosen to play on the system that day. H ...more
Medeia Sharif
Jan 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Jake Doyle wants a Nintendo for Christmas. It’s the 80’s and all his friends have to line up outside Timmy Kleen’s house, fawning over and bribing him to be let inside since he has the neighborhood's only Nintendo. The game system is hypnotic. But when something wacky, unexpected, and dangerous happens, Nintendo is banned in their small town of Batavia, Illinois.

There’s no stopping Jake from trying to get his own system, though. He’ll help his sister get a Cabbage Patch Kid if she helps him get
...more
Kandace
Nov 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
It's 1980-something and THE hot item for Christmas is the Nintendo Entertainment System. Jake Doyle is willing to forgo all the baseball cards in the world and hawk as many Christmas wreaths it takes to get a Nintendo. But a freak accident has all the parents decrying the violence of video games. Will Jake's quest for his dream gift be successful? Or will the princess be in another castle?

Typically I don't read seasonal novels. They tend to be a little too sentimental for my taste. However, as a
...more
John
Jul 18, 2014 rated it liked it
Having been a kid that grew up in the 80's, I definitely appreciated all of the nostalgic references in this book from the era as seen from the point of a view of a grade schooler. Those pop culture nods and the discussion of being an NES fanatic specifically are what carried the book in my opinion. For me though, the book is too much of a direct ripoff of the classic movie "A Christmas Story". To say that "8-Bit Christmas" was inspired by "A Christmas Story" is not putting it strongly enough. I ...more
Anastacia
Dec 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013, fiction
This book is about Jake, a 9 year old boy who wants a Nintendo. I was a kid (though a girl) in the 80s and couldn't resist reading this book for the memories. There's a lot - and I mean a LOT - of pop culture references in the book (and not all of them were accurate, at least I didn't feel like they were really 80s pop culture references), from Cabbage Patch kids to He-Man, and it's a fun romp through memory lane.

That being said - I had to rate the book 3 stars because I didn't feel like there w
...more
Shawn
Jan 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book totally describes how I felt about the NES during the late 80s. Of course it follows a formula that is similar to A Christmas Story but that's okay because it perfectly captures the same passion Ralphie felt towards obtaining a Red Ryder BB gun as the kid in this story felt about getting an NES. It's funny because I had friends/acquaintances that were very similar to some of the characters in this story; like the kid who had all the newest games and held a sort of lottery to determine ...more
Lindsey
Nov 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: net-galley
I have two "people" to thank for my reading 8-Bit Christmas by Kevin Jakubowski. One is my friend Jenni for the recommendation because I never would have requested this book on my own and the other is NetGalley for the book itself. This book was thoroughly delightful and everything you could hope for in a book about growing up in the '80s and that desperate Christmas wish for a Nintendo. I loved the cultural references to the time and all I could picture was my husband and brother when reading a ...more
Obadiah
Oct 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
I grabbed this book on a total whim and I'm overwhelmingly glad that I did. I cannot believe how much I laughed and smiled while I read it! Jukabowski really nails the essence of being a 9 year old kid yearning for "that" Christmas present. He is definitely going for a "Christmas Story"-for-the-Nintendo-generation vibe and he mostly nails it. From time to time the book feels little bit too much like a collection of short blogs on 80s culture but this is a minor quibble. The story was a warm blan ...more
Kathryn
Nov 12, 2013 rated it did not like it
I received this book as an ARC from the publisher through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. II truly wanted to love this book or at least enjoy it. One, there is very little plot or other elements that make a good story. It seems the book mainly was written for nostalgia's sake. If you are a fan of the movie, A Christmas Story, this could be enjoyable, but I for one have not ever enjoted that movie and I as well as many other reviewers find a parallel between this and A Christmas Stor ...more
Mandi
Dec 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: net-galley
This book is mildly reminiscent of the movie "A Christmas Story", only taking place in the 80's. The author takes his memories of childhood and spins them into a humourous tale that all children, regardless of generation, can relate to- bullies that only become bigger with memory, parents who could be firm but also incredibly loving and teachers whom you still love or hate all these years later. This book is especially lovely for those of us(yes, this includes me, friends) who actually grew up i ...more
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A native of Batavia, Illinois, Kevin Jakubowski is a film and television writer best known for the Bruce Willis comedy Assassination of a High School President and for his work on the Comedy Central series Brickleberry. He has written and co-written scripts for Warner Brothers, Paramount, Lionsgate, Sony and Fox and is currently developing his own animated series at Nickelodeon. He lives in Califo ...more