Brad Finkle's new book is entitled Holiday Hero: A Man's Manual for Holiday Lighting, but if there's a woman crazy enough to climb a ladder in the dead of winter with a string of Christmas lights in her grip and thus risk death in multiple ways (falling, electrocution, hypothermia), far be it from me to dissuade her. Decorating one's home for Christmas can be an obsession, with most men possessing some degree of desire to turn their home into Disneyland; what we've lacked until now is a guidebook. A 20-year decorated veteran (his displays have won numerous awards), Finkle shows you, step by step, how to turn your yard into a photon-filled wonderland. The key, he says, is planning. Starting with a rundown of what's available (the variety of holiday lighting is astounding), he shows decorating novices how to work up a plan, what to put where, and how to go about getting it up. He then gives us a dozen possible layouts, ranging from a simple, but elegant display to a complex set-up that would make a Vegas casino proud. Finkle concludes with some easy tips for removal and storage. As a jaded longtime holiday decorator, I thought I knew it all, but I have to admit that I learned a few things from Holiday Hero. You will too.

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