Todd McCray, hero of A Dog Named Christmas, is now twenty-four years old and working at a local animal shelter, where he meets and quickly becomes best friends with Laura, a young volunteer. Laura, like Todd, has disabilities of her own, but her struggles are more physical than developmental. Their friendship is sealed when Todd—with the help of his trusted companion, the tenacious Labrador retriever named Christmas—trains a beautiful dog named Gracie to help Laura with the day-to-day life tasks that are difficult for her.
Life seems good for Todd, but all is not well in his hometown. Struggling families unable to make ends meet are abandoning more and more dogs, and the shelter is swelling to capacity. The local government is struggling to meet its obligations too, and in early December, on the cusp of another holiday season, Todd’s boss delivers the bad news. Due to funding problems, the shelter will close its doors before the end of the year. But what will happen to all the animals?
As the Christmas holiday approaches, Todd has limited time to find homes for all the dogs. Not to mention that he needs to secure a new job and figure out what to do when his friendship with Laura takes an unexpected romantic turn. All this seems overwhelming unless you’ve got a loving family, dedicated friends, and a couple of very special dogs behind you. In which case, nothing is impossible.
Todd McCray and his family, especially beloved dog Christmas, have returned in Kincaid's latest saccharine holiday tale (after A Dog Named Christmas). Todd has been working for years at the local animal shelter when he learns that it's being shut down. With his best friend, Laura, he struggles to place the animals in homes before the shelter closes, and Todd becomes torn between a dairy job close to home and a dog-trainer job three hours away, a decision that is further complicated when he realizes that he and Laura may be more than friends. Kincaid's retread to familiar themes of family, community, and the healing power of animals is full of ham-fisted pleas for the reader's sympathies ("the girl was pressing a message into his hand: We'll get through this. Together") and dialogue that is either wooden (" I'm going to miss working here,' Todd said. I know you will, Todd. I'm going to miss volunteering and seeing you, Hayley, and Doc Pelot' ") or clich d (" I'm putting it down, Laura,' Todd said. I'm putting it down' ") but fans will not be deterred.
A Dog Named Christmas.
This is a wonderful book! I loved reading this story about Todd
and his extended family of friends. I totally lost it when Doc announcement of the New Shelter in Todd’s name, tears streaming down my face as I am reading!!
Again, when Todd brought Christmas back to his Dad!
Well done Sir, A Read for any age, any time of the year.
Momma Annie, age 73. 74 On 1/20/18
A Christmas Home
Since I have my own recuse dog, a white multipolar named Lacey, I related to all the agony of wanting people to understand the need to rescue these strays. Mine was recused from a puppy mill and in sad shape, but now she has been with us for 6 years and thriving. I thoroughly enjoying reading the lives of the characters and their love of dogs.
from West Virginia
Thank you so much for this heart warming story! A reminder for us all that the most meaningful thing in life is our relationships. Although I was sad to come to the end of the story, I felt immediate comfort when I reached out for a warm hug from our faithful canine family member, our 11 year old Great Pyrenees, Brandy. She has changed our lives with her unconditional love!