C. John Coombes
Self-published Digital e-Book (2008)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (11/08)
The tale begins in 1854, when fifty-six-year-old Elizabeth Dennison Claussen is preparing to meet a woman who shared an important childhood experience with her. When Elizabeth's guest arrives, they reminisce about the eventful voyage that they took from Europe to America in the early 1800s. Elizabeth tells the tale of her life beginning with becoming a maidservant for Rebecca Claussen when her own mother died. Through her story we learn about the Claussens, who became her adoptive parents. Even at the present time in which they are reminiscing, Christopher Claussen held a special fascination for both women. Elizabeth remembers him as seeming to have extraordinary abilities. She felt he could do anything. His love for Rebecca was also very special and rare.
As Elizabeth reminisces, we get to travel through time with her and share her memories. This includes the pain she suffered upon losing her mother, the excitement that she felt when preparing for her voyage across the sea, being attacked by pirates, and then her experiences upon arriving in the Americas. All of her memories are brought to life for us by her vivid recollections.
"Claus: A Christmas Incarnation" is an incredible novel. The author, C.John Coombes, did a wonderful job of bringing his story to life and making it seem real. He also provided beautiful illustrations. In addition to being an artist that can draw, he is also an artist that can paint with his words. Everything in the story seemed so real, from the descriptions of the era, to the emotions that the characters were experiencing. Their imperfections also show their humanity. I found myself totally being caught up in the tale, caught up to the point that I read over 400 pages in one sitting. I cannot recommend this novel enough. I truly believe that "Claus" is destined to be a classic.