Merry Christmas! I hope you all are enjoying a blessed holiday, doing what pleases you, and surrounded by people you love. My hubby and youngest daughter and I are having a quiet day, since the other four children are celebrating with other factions of their families. Frankly, after the frenzy of the last three weeks, the quiet is a welcome respite, and I’ll be ready for the next round of activity next weekend. I’ve got quiet time for organizing, re-charging, and of course, reading.
This is Free Week at Four Foxes, One Hound, and I’m celebrating the fact that I finished reading 50 great books this year! This month I’m sharing the last three in my Goodreads Reading Challenge, and all three are Christmas books written by people with whom I’ve interacted in various writers groups. If you’re in the mood for a holiday romance, I hope you find something that piques your interest.
Romance Rekindled by Diane Burton
I’ve loved all of the Alex O’Hara mysteries, so I knew I had to read this story, set in Alex’s hometown of Far Haven, Michigan. With the lakeshore setting and the Dutch last names, I felt right at home. But instead of Alex and Nick, this story focused on another resident, Abby TenEyck. She owns a little gift shop in the resort town, and has built a comfortable life with her daughter. But her life is turned upside down when her formerly straight-laced mother changes things up by getting arrested – with her new boyfriend George! Abby is outraged at what she sees as immature behavior. There were times when I wanted to shake Abby for being so reluctant to the accept her mother’s life choices, but George’s son Sam sums it up nicely: Abby doesn’t like change. Her mother, George, daughter Bethany, and Sam all help her to grow in this way, along with plenty of Christmas cheer.
The More the Merrier by Liwen Ho
I enjoyed this friends-to-more story. It’s quite short, so it can be read in an afternoon. I quickly identified with the characters, since Alyssa’s parents, with their high expectations and adherence to Asian traditions, reminded me of my own. Barry was adorable, and I liked the way he kept his achievements and good deeds to himself. He’s the perfect “diamond in the rough” character. Alyssa is a health food blogger. She’s driven, a type A personality, and it’s easy to see how she would overlook Barry as a serious boyfriend. The turning point at the end is quite abrupt, but otherwise this is a good story. A cute read!
Gingerbread at Moonglow by Deborah Garner
I won a paperback copy of this book in a Facebook giveaway last week. The cover is cute and inviting, and since my eyes were bothering me from all my end-of-the-year computer time, I decided to read this instead of one of the many still waiting for me on my kindle app. This is a pleasant little novella set in a rural Montana inn. Mist is the inn’s chef and activities director. She’s also a painter, although it seemed odd that she painted the canvases when they were already in their frames. Other than that, the story is a cute and easy read. There’s no external conflict, other than a few of the characters have minor problems to work out. It’s just a sweet little story of a group of people celebrating the holiday together. Several recipes for holiday favorites are included.
I’m all set to sign on to read another 50 books in 2018! What are you reading this holiday?