Mr. Ives' Christmas
by Oscar Hijuelos
"Mr. Ives' Christmas" is about a father mourning the loss of his son. The boy was 17 and about to enter the priesthood when he is shot by a 14 year old boy as he is leaving choir practice.
The book follows Mr. Ives through decades from his adoption in the 1920's until he's in his 70's. The main focus of the book is his attempts to come to terms with the death of his son. Since he is a good-hearted man, he even has a brief correspondence with the killer. But as the years go by, he is becoming more withdrawn from the life he has. But he hods on to his spirituality. He knows it's the only thing that will get him through to the end.
I thought this was a very good book. It makes the point that compassion is desperately needed in our lives.