St. Nick's Journey
Publication Date: December 28, 2020
Tom desperately tries to battle his doubts and fears about death, abandonment, and loneliness while struggling with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, acute anxiety, and crippling depression. He writes prose and poetry in his journal as an attempt to cope. And he tries, unsuccessfully, to keep this internal conflict from becoming known to his family and friends by trying to keep up appearances. But the tiny thread keeping his hope alive inevitably snaps. And he becomes in desperate turmoil.
Imagine if the glue that keeps everything dear to you comes loose, threatening your destruction. Wouldn't you desperately try all you could to put your life back together? When this happens to the young Obsessive-Compulsive Tom Jolmen, he clings to his last hope. Tormented by a shadowy presence, Tom runs away to find his Christmas hero, St Nicholas. Join him, his sports-loving brother, Nate, and their new-found companions: the conflicted Brendan and antagonistic Paul on their quest. The adventure goes amiss. But with the aid of their guardian angels this failed attempt helps resolve their doubts and strengthen their faith as they discover the real truth about themselves.
"An impetuous quest for much-loved Saint Nicholas by four boys struggling with the mystery of faith and neurological and social issues, St. Nick's Journey is related with verve and insight. On their journey the boys experience the reality of Catholic belief in angels, the communion of saints, and the Holy Eucharist. A compelling first novel from an imaginative and talented young writer."
-Arthur Bousfield, author of Home to Canada: Royal Tours 1786-2010
"In St. Nick's Journey, Keith Mayhew-Hammond takes us on a strange and magical journey through a land as close as down the street, and as far as imagination can conceive. Reminiscent of Shirley Jackson's ability to make an unusual point of view seem normal to the reader, Hammond gives us a taste of the horror and wonder that his Aspergered and OCD'd hero perceives in a way that makes the reader wonder if he himself is losing something not having those conditions. But he does so in such a way as to make it all seem very natural. Moreover, while both the protagonist's handicaps and youth might, in less deft hands, be used to explain away the enchantment and numinosity of the journey the four friends undertake, Hammond uses them to create a breathtaking Christmas masterpiece."
-Charles A. Coulombe, author of Vicars of Christ and Puritan's Empire
"To the best of my discernment, this novel conveys only the most traditional and exact teaching of the magisterium of the one, holy, Catholic, and apostolic church."
-Alexander Roman, Oblate of Saint Benedict of Saint Meinrad's Archabbey