Dan Walsh's debut novel was impressively written for a first book. The story reminded me of one I'd read several years ago by Tracie Peterson that took place during WWI. It was titled Silent Star. That story also made me tear up toward the end. I really enjoyed this book and the author's characterization of Patrick and his grandfather even though I'm not a big fan of Christmas stories. The WWII setting, including the role of the social worker and the police in the story, felt genuine to me. While reading my mind was firmly set in the 1940s and stayed there for the entire book. That was very well done. I also liked how the author showed the reality of the times. There were things done in those days that would never be allowed in the modern era. My how times have changed. And the transformation in the hearts of bitter and confused characters rang true to me. All in all, this was a great book to read in front of the fire over the holidays and would make a great Christmas gift for people who enjoy nostalgic stories set during the Christmas season. *note* It looks like their is a sequel coming out for this book and I am definitely going to read it. I was hoping their would be one and was delighted to see a sequel listed.
Set in World War II, The Unfinished Gift is a wonderful story of family redemption. Little Patrick Collins is taken to stay with a grandfather he has never met. A grandfather, full of bitterness, anger and sorrow of all the things he feels had gone wrong in his life. Patrick's mother was killed in a car accident, and his father is in England fighting in the War. Patrick has to stay with his grandfather until his daddy comes home. However a telegram comes that lists his father as missing in action. His grandfather yells at him, and it drive Patrick to run away. A story that will have you crying, laughing and mad at the same time. A wonderful story. Dan Walsh's first novel is a hit for this reviewer. 249 pages 5 stars.This book was provided for review purposes only, no payment or cash was received for this review.
I try to find books, hardcover, short enough yet long enough, for gifts at Christmas.This is neat and I already have a person in mind for whom to get a copy. (I am not parting with mine ...yet.)If you enjoy The Unfinished Gift, you'll also like the Red Glove books by Kingsbury.
A story that jerks your heart strings. Love is there, but under the surface. A small boy without his parents in an old house and a Grandfather who has forgotten how to love. A dead Mother, a Father in the military and the Christmas Season all come together to give this a wonderful, loving finish.