As I've stated previously, the benefit of most holiday stories is that they are short, sweet, and bring out the true meaning of the holidays for most readers. Sometimes, however, readers are looking for something a little different, something to take them away from the constant swirl of the holidays, and for that I recommend...
Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris. This is one of those books I read annually around the holidays - it gives me another perspective on the holiday frenzy, and, best of all, makes me laugh. Out loud. Frequently.
This book contains six stories/essays from Sedaris, three of which were previously published. NPR listeners will no doubt be familiar with the most well-known piece from the book, "The Santaland Diaries," which relates his experiences working as an elf at the Macy's in New York City. This snarky tale shows parents at their worst, and includes my favorite quote from the entire book - "You're an elf and you're going to wear panties like an elf." Who ever imagined those words together in a sentence?
The remaining selections include an annual family Christmas letter gone horribly wrong, a ridiculous take on children's holiday programs, and and extreme version of keeping up with the Joneses. I have to say, Sedaris never fails to amuse and enlighten me, no matter how many times I read this book.
While I would not say that David Sedaris is an acquired taste - his books routinely top the best seller lists - I would agree that he definitely is not for everyone. If you are looking for holidays with a really big twist, give Holidays on Ice a try. He has also recently released an update, which contains additional stories from additional holidays, making it something to be read any type of year!
To see more about David Sedaris, go to: http://www.barclayagency.com/sedaris.html.