HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: The Christmas Box Collection: Timepiece, and The Letter
Author: Richard Paul Evans
Publisher: Pocket Books, 1998
Language level: 3
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Teens and adults
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Evans, Richard Paul. The Christmas Box Collection: Timepiece, and The Letter (published in 1996 and 1997 and republished in 1998 by Simon and Schuster Inc., 1230 Avenue of the Americas, , New York City, NY 10020). I have previously read and reviewed author Richard Paul Evans’s #1 New York Times bestselling book The Christmas Box, in which a young family of Salt Lake City, UT, moves in with a widow, MaryAnne Parkin, and together they discover what the Christmas holiday is really all about. Timepiece and The Letter are “prequels” which tell the story of David and MaryAnne Parkin. In Timepiece David and MaryAnne meet, discover love, marry, find the power of forgiveness, and learn to cope with loss. What will happen to their angelic daughter, Andrea? In The Letter the couple faces love’s greatest challenge, but they also find its truest meaning and learn the lessons that are echoed from the past. Will David ever find his mother?
All three stories are now compiled in one treasury. There are a few references to drinking various alcoholic beverages—David Parkin even gets drunk once—and to smoking different forms of tobacco. Besides a couple of common euphemisms (blasted, gee), the term “Lord” is used as an exclamation on a couple of occasions, and the “d” word is found around five times. Dancing is also mentioned. And one story does involve an unwed pregnancy, but it is handled very discreetly and appropriately. In general, while a great deal of sadness occurs, with several deaths, these are wholesome love stories that will tug at one’s heartstrings. Someone pointed out, “Scrooge-like critics did not swoon over Evans’s trilogy, but they are quite outnumbered by fans.”