Synopsis: At Christmastime, it seems as though a woman’s work is never done. Trimming the tree, mailing the cards, schlepping to the mall, the endless wrapping—bah humbug! So this year, Joy and Laura and the rest of their knitting group decide to go on strike. If their husbands and families want a nice holiday—filled with parties, decorations, and presents—well, they’ll just have to do it themselves. The boycott soon takes on a life of its own when a reporter picks up the story and more women join in. But as Christmas Day approaches, Joy, Laura, and their husbands confront larger issues in their marriages and discover that a little holiday magic is exactly what they need to come together.
Sheila Roberts gives the best gift of all in this funny, heartwarming novel that touches the very core of Christmas spirit.
My Thoughts: It all started with an innocent idea.
Joy and Bob are empty-nesters. Joy, who loved the Christmas holidays, was tired of her Bob Humbug husband’s attitude towards the festivities so she decided to go on strike. Since her husband didn’t seem to appreciate the work behind the holiday anyways, if he wanted a Christmas he could do all the work, right? But then Joy took the idea to her knitting group, The Stitch ‘N Bitch, and the fun really began.
Joy’s neighbor, Laura, was tired of all the work that went into the holidays. Her husband, Glen, enjoyed entertaining but did none of the work behind it. Also, Glen and Laura have two young children ~~ Amy, aged 4; and Tyler, aged 2. So, when Laura goes on strike, it’s up to Glen to do all of the Christmas prep alone ~ including photos with Santa, decorations, Advent Calendars, Christmas Cards, etc., etc. Glen’s antics alone were enough to make this an enjoyable read.
Although the story is primarily about Joy and Laura, there are the other ladies in the knitting club ~~ Sharon, who had 3 boys……well, 4 if you include her husband, Pete. Sharon is frazzled and tired of trying to be the perfect wife and making the holidays joyful for everyone but her. Kay, who is married to Jack and has two step-children. Kay does all the shopping, including the gifts that are supposed to be coming from her husband. Carol, who was widowed after 35 years of marriage and is spending her 2nd Christmas alone just shakes her head and wishes she had the problems that the other ladies of the knitting group had. Debbie and Jerri round out the rest of the group, though are not featured as prominently as the rest of the ladies on strike.
Journalist Rosemary and her photographer Rick cover the story for the Holly Herald and the strike eventually ends up affecting the staffers with surprising results. Soon, it seems the whole town of Holly is involved in the strike and throughout it all the men, as well as the women, learn valuable lessons about Christmas, patience, acceptance, and love.
Verdict: This was Very Good ~ almost Excellent, in fact. I loved the lengths these women went to in order to get a little recognition and to see the men try to accomplish the tasks that were previously taken for granted made for a hilarious read.