Friday, December 24, 2010
THE FAT MAN: A TALE OF NORTH POLE NOIR by Ken Harmon
THE FAT MAN is a spoof of traditional Christmas stories and songs along with a dash of noir featuring one of Santa's elves, Gumdrop Coal. Gumdrop Coal, head of the infamous Coal patrol, gets canned right before Christmas. Rumor has it that he not only took his job too far but that he was also physically threatening naughty children and their parents. As Gumdrop seeks to clear his name, he uncovers a plot to get rid of Santa Claus that may extend all the way to the Misfit Mafia on the Island of Misfit Toys. Will Gumdrop find the perpetrators before Santa gets it?
Fans of classic holiday tales will find much to enjoy in this book. Harmon spares no one from Rudolph to George Bailey to the characters from A CHRISTMAS CAROL. While the noir-nods can be a bit heavy-handed at times, I still liked the tone of the book. There really wasn't much to the story but that wasn't really the point. I enjoyed seeing how Harmon wove together all the different Christmas stories and songs. There were even some excellent references to the Christ child and the true meaning of Christmas. And I can tell you I will never hear the 12 Days of Christmas the same way.
BOTTOM LINE: Recommended for fans of the Christmas genre. Others might find the book a little irritating. Lots of funny lines and references here, though. Good for a holiday laugh!