Recently, I was asked to read and review The Santa Shop by Tim Greaton. Below is my review of this delightful book.
Skip is homeless. He's been living on the street long enough to know his way around. After the accidental death of his wife and son, for which he holds himself responsible, he loses his job, his home and his self-esteem. Desperately contemplating suicide, he meets Father Johnston and his life begins to change.
We walk through Skip's day, learning about his life. Neither asking for sympathy, nor denying his fall from grace, Skip reminds us we're all worthy of a little respect. Although he's fallen about as low as he can go, he maintains what small dignity he has, refusing a handout, especially when it's accompanied by a lecture.
Although set at Christmastime, "The Santa Shop" is a book that readers can enjoy at any time of the year. It's appropriate for young teens to adult readers. I read part of it aloud to my teenage son and he's decided to read the book—clear evidence that "The Santa Shop" bridges generations.
Greaton treats the character of Skip with unusual insight and tenderness. He lovingly portrays the other characters as well, showing the compassion they have for their fellow man.
I greatly enjoyed "The Santa Shop" and look forward to reading more books by Tim Greaton in the future.