BURNHAM - The holiday spirits of hope and human kindness come alive in the pages of Lamar Richard's first book, "Miracles and Magic: Three Tales of Christmas."
The stories introduce a new type of Santa Claus, Richard said, that brings guidance and hope to the world, rather than a pile of gifts. In each story the main character, an orphan, a runaway and a young priest, are up against seemingly insurmountable odds when a man named Chris brings them hope.
"I'd like to think that readers will take away an appreciation for the potential goodness in mankind," Richard said. "When things are at their worst, it can bring out the best in people."
‘Miracles and Magic,’ a book which includes three holiday tales, features a version of Santa who offers guidance and hope to the world for the season.
submitted by LAMAR?RICHARD
The book was inspired by Richard's work as the local Toys-For-Tots Santa. Delivering gifts as Santa and helping those less fortunate without any need for recognition was a humbling and rewarding experience, Richard said.
"I've always liked stories about Santa Claus because of my time as him," Richard said. "Chris, or the Santa Claus, in my stories is really based on the experience and emotions I had working with Toys-For-Tots."
Though Richard recalls his high school teacher encouraging him to major in creative writing in college, he instead went for criminal justice and continued writing as a hobby. After recently retiring as a correctional officer, Richard returned to his writing and began work on "Miracles and Magic."
"I've never thought of myself as a writer," Richard said. "I tend to throw out everything I write. I only managed to finish this book because my wife stole a copy and showed it to people at work. They kept asking what would happen next, so I kept writing."
It took a year to write the book and then another year to edit and publish it, Richard said. The book went on sale in October and has done incredibly well, even selling online to markets in England, Canada, Germany, Italy and Spain, he said.
Richard has already begun work on a "Miracles and Magic" sequel as well as an action/adventure novel.
There will be a special book signing with Richard from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday at The Friendship Bookstore, in Burnham. The book is also available for purchase online through Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Prices range from $10.99 for paperback to $20.99 for hardback.