The Christmas Shoes by Donna VanLiere

Sometimes, the things that can change your life will cross your path in one instant-and then, in a fleeting moment, they're gone. But if you open your eyes, and watch carefully, you will believe....

Robert is a successful attorney who has everything in life-and nothing at all. Focused on professional achievement and material rewards, Robert is on the brink of losing his marriage. He has lost sight of his wife, Kate, their two daughters, and ultimately himself.

Eight year old Nathan has a beloved mother, Maggie, whom he is losing to cancer. But Nathan and his family are building a simple yet full life, and struggling to hold onto every moment they have together. 

A chance meeting on Christmas even brings Robert and Nathan together-he is shopping for a family he hardly knows and Nathan is shopping for a mother he is soon to lose. In this one encounter, their lives are forever altered as Robert learns an important lesson: sometimes the smallest things can make all the difference. The Christmas Shoes is a universal story of the deeper meaning of serendipity, a tale of our shared humanity, and of how a power greater than ourselves can shape, and even save, our lives.


I swear I am like Pavlov’s dog when it comes to the song, “Christmas Shoes.” Every time I hear it on the radio, I instantly tear up. I can’t help it. It happens every single time, despite the fact that I have heard the song innumerable times. So, I suppose I shouldn’t have expected anything different from this little book based on the popular holiday song. It is a typical “Christmas story,” no different than say the holiday Hallmark movies that I can also claim an addiction to (Don’t judge...I love all things Christmas!). This story is perhaps a little more bitter sweet than others, but it’s still filled with the Christmas spirit. And in case you are wondering...yes, it did make me cry.

2015 Reading Challenge: A book set during Christmas

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