Countdown to Christmas #14

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Hello! I can hardly believe it, but it’s Christmas Eve, Eve, and the final Countdown to Christmas of 2018!! 🎄😱  Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

This week’s pick is Twelve Slays of Christmas by Jacqueline Frost.

IMG_5059.JPGWhen Holly White’s fiance cancels their Christmas Eve wedding with less than two weeks to go, Holly heads home with a broken heart. Lucky for her, home in historic Mistletoe, Maine is magical during Christmastime–exactly what the doctor prescribed. Except her plan to drown her troubles in peppermints and snickerdoodles is upended when local grouch and president of the Mistletoe Historical Society Margaret Fenwick is bludgeoned and left in the sleigh display at Reindeer Games, Holly’s family tree farm. 
When the murder weapon is revealed as one of the wooden stakes used to identify trees on the farm, Sheriff Evan Grey turns to Holly’s father, Bud, and the Reindeer Games staff. And it doesn’t help that Bud and the reindeer keeper were each seen arguing with Margaret just before her death. But Holly knows her father, and is determined to exonerate him.The jingle bells are ringing, the clock is ticking, and if Holly doesn’t watch out, she’ll end up on Santa’s naughty list in Twelve Slays of Christmas, Jacqueline Frost’s jolly series debut.

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Twelve Slays of Christmas is such a fun and festive read!  The mystery is well done and the atmosphere is so Christmas-y.  I could totally see this series becoming a movie series on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries.  This book was so fun and enjoyable, and if you love cozy mysteries, I would definitely recommend this book!

Have you read Twelve Slays of Christmas?


 

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Christmas Countdown #13

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Welcome to week 3 of Countdown to Christmas! Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.  Last week was so busy, I ended up taking a break from Countdown to Christmas, but this week I am back. Today I am actually featuring two books, because my niece wanted to share a Christmas book of her own!

Today’s picks are A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and The Santa Claus Book by Eileen Daly.

IMG_4773.jpgA Christmas Carol is a novella by English author Charles Dickens. It was first published by Chapman & Hall on 19 December 1843. Carol tells the story of a bitter old miser named Ebenezer Scrooge and his transformation resulting from a supernatural visit by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley and the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Yet to Come. The novella met with instant success and critical acclaim. The book was written and published in early Victorian era Britain, a period when there was strong nostalgia for old Christmas traditions together with the introduction of new customs, such as Christmas trees and greeting cards. Dickens’ sources for the tale appear to be many and varied, but are, principally, the humiliating experiences of his childhood, his sympathy for the poor, and various Christmas stories and fairy tales.

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The Santa Claus Book is all about Santa delivering toys on Christmas Eve!

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A Christmas Carol is honestly such a delightful read!  Even if you’ve seen some of the many adaptations, the book is still worth the read.  Ebeneezer Scrooge is so memorable for a reason.  It’s quite short and I really think every book lover should at least give this one a try!


The Santa Claus Book is such a cute and fun picture book.  It is filled such gorgeous, vintage pictures, and it just puts you in such a Christmas-y mood.  My 5-year-old niece really adores this one and loves reading about Santa delivering presents!

Have you read either of these books? 🎄

 


 

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Christmas Countdown #12

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Welcome back to week 2 of this year’s Countdown to Christmas!   Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

This week’s book is The Perfect Christmas by Debbie Macomber.

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WHAT WOULD MAKE YOUR CHRISTMAS PERFECT?

For Cassie Beaumont, it’s meeting her perfect match. Cassie, at thirty-three, wants a husband and kids, and so far, nothing’s worked. Not blind dates, not the Internet and certainly not leaving love to chance.

What’s left? A professional matchmaker. He’s Simon Dodson, and he’s very choosy about the clients he takes on. Cassie finds Simon a difficult, acerbic know-it-all, and she’s astonished when he accepts her as a client.

Claiming he has her perfect mate in mind, Simon assigns her three tasks to complete before she meets him. Three tasks that are all about Christmas: being a charity bell ringer, dressing up as Santa’s elf at a children’s party and preparing a traditional turkey dinner for her neighbors (whom she happens to dislike). Despite a number of comical mishaps, Cassie does it all — and she’s finally ready to meet her match.

But just like the perfect Christmas gift, he turns out to be a wonderful surprise!

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The Perfect Christmas truly makes such a perfect Christmas read!  If you love Hallmark Christmas movies, you’ll absolutely adore this novel.  It is full of the classic troupes we all know and love.  Plus, it is just filled with such a fun and Christmas-y atmosphere.  The Perfect Christmas is such a lighthearted, festive, and enjoyable read!

Have you read any of Debbie Macomber’s books?

 


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Christmas Countdown #11

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Countdown to Christmas is back!  If you’re new(ish) to my blog, Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.  This is the third year I’ve been doing this, and it’s now time to share my first pick for the 2018 holiday season!

To start things off, my first pick for 2018 is Skipping Christmas by John Grisham.

IMG_5434.JPGImagine a year without Christmas. No crowded shops, no corny office parties, no fruitcakes, no unwanted presents. That’s just what Luther and Nora Krank have in mind when they decide that, just this once, they’ll skip the holiday altogether. Theirs will be the only house on the street without a rooftop Frosty the snowman; they won’t be hosting their annual Christmas Eve bash; they aren’t even going to have a tree. They won’t need one, because come December 25 they’re setting sail on a Caribbean cruise. But, as this weary couple is about to discover, skipping Christmas brings enormous consequences – and isn’t half as easy as they’d imagined.

A classic tale for modern times, Skipping Christmas offers a hilarious look at the chaos and frenzy that has become part of our holiday tradition.

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Christmas with the Kranks, which is the adaptation of Skipping Christmas, is one of my favorite Christmas movies.  So, naturally, I had to read the book that inspired the film, and let me just say it was no different!  This book is so fun, festive, and goofy.  The writing style and short chapters makes this book a breeze to get through, which is perfect when you’re busy with holiday preparations and don’t have much free time.  Skipping Christmas makes such a great holiday read!

 

Have you read Skipping Christmas or seen Christmas with the Kranks?

 


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Christmas Countdown #10

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Hello and Merry Christmas Eve!  The big day is finally almost here!  Welcome back to my final Countdown to Christmas of 2017.  Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

Today’s book is The Child’s Christmas by Evelyn Sharp.

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Members of an English country family experience the excitement and beauty of an old-fashioned Christmas season, in events leading from the early days of decoration and preparation through New Year’s Day and up to Twelfth Night.

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The Child’s Christmas is such a festive and delightful book!  It tells of all the various Christmas festivities in an old-fashioned, late 1800’s/early 1900’s setting.  It was really fun reading about all the different activities! Also, I really appreciated that the book started in early December, and went all the way through January 5th, the 12th day of Christmas!  Learning about all the different activities they did AFTER the 25th has only pushed my love for Christmas further.  You can be sure I’ll still be celebrating Christmas until then, too!  Overall, The Child’s Christmas is a fun and entertaining holiday book that I think people of all ages will enjoy!


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Christmas Countdown #9

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Hello everyone! I can hardly believe that Christmas Eve is next week!!  Who’s all ready for Christmas?! 🙋‍♀️ Today it’s another installment of Countdown to Christmas! Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

This week’s book is Ex-mas by Kate Brian.

IMG_2662.JPGTwo Exes. One holiday adventure. Merry Ex-Mas? Seventeen-year-old Lila Beckwith’s parents just left for vacation, and Lila’s all set to throw the holiday party of the season. But when her Christmas-obsessed little brother, Cooper, discovers that global warming is melting the North Pole, he and his best friend, Tyler, take off on a runaway mission to save Santa.Lila has to get Cooper safely home before her parents get back on Christmas Eve. But the only person who can help her is Tyler’s older brother, Beau — a.k.a. Lila’s musician, anti-everything ex-boyfriend.It’ll take more than a Christmas miracle for Lila and Beau to overcome their differences and find their fugitive brothers. But could a journey destined for disaster help these polar opposites fall in love…all over again?

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Ex-mas is such a fun and adventurous holiday read. It’s filled with romance, goofy little brothers, and a road trip! It has everything that makes a short and sweet YA novel. More people need to read it! If you’re looking for a Christmas themed book to read the week of Christmas, Ex-mas is a great choice!


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Christmas Countdown #8

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Welcome back to Countdown to Christmas. Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.  Can you even believe how quickly Christmas is approaching?!  Before you know it, it’ll be Christmas Eve!

Today’s book is The Case of the Twin Teddy Bears (Nancy Drew #116) by Carolyn Keene

IMG_2636.JPGOn the trail of a teddy bear thief, nancy unwraps double-dealing and double crosses! 
Bess is working during the Christmas rush at Beary Wonderful, a toy and teddy bear shop, when the holiday season takes a sudden scary turn. The owner’s prized collection of antique teddy bears — cute, cuddly, and worth a bundle — has been ripped off. But the break-in is only the beginning of a much bigger and more brazen teddy bear caper. 
The attempted theft of Bess’s own bear — a replica of one of the antiques — leads Nancy to believe that more is at stake than a couple of burgled bears. For Nancy knows that even something as innocent as a teddy bear can be stuffed with intrigue!

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The Case of the Twin Teddy Bears is such a fun and short Christmas story!  Like most Nancy Drew books, the mystery isn’t too intense, but it is still filled with plenty of twists and turns.  The book is also quite festive, and even though it’s about a robbery, it still put me in the Christmas spirit.  I really appreciated the length of this book, too, because at Christmas time, I don’t always have as much time to read as I would like, so it’s nice, for me, to enjoy shorter books this time of year.  Overall, this was a very enjoyable book.  I really think Nancy Drew fans will love this holiday themed mystery!

 

Do you like Nancy Drew books?  Have you read any of her Christmas mysteries?


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Christmas Countdown – #7

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Happy Sunday!  I can’t believe it is December now.  Christmas is getting so close!! We are now into week 3 of Countdown to Christmas for 2017! Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

This week’s book is The Christmas List by Richard Paul Evans.

IMG_2563.JPGThe New York Times bestselling author of The Christmas Boxreturns with a holiday novel of hope, love, and redemption.

Dear Reader,
When I was in seventh grade, my English teacher, Mrs. Johnson, gave our class the intriguing (if somewhat macabre) assignment of writing our own obituaries. Oddly, I don’t remember much of what I wrote about my life, but I do remember how I died: in first place on the final lap of the Daytona 500. At the time, I hadn’t considered writing as an occupation, a field with a remarkably low on-the-job casualty rate.

What intrigues me most about Mrs. Johnson’s assignment is the opportunity she gave us to confront our own legacy. How do we want to be remembered? That question has motivated our species since the beginning of time: from building pyramids to putting our names on skyscrapers.

As I began to write this book, I had two objectives: First, I wanted to explore what could happen if someone read their obituary before they died and saw, firsthand, what the world really thought of them. Their legacy.

Second, I wanted to write a Christmas story of true redemption. One of my family’s holiday traditions is to see a local production of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen it (perhaps a dozen), but it still thrills me to see the change that comes over Ebenezer Scrooge as he transforms from a dull, tight-fisted miser into a penitent, “giddy-as-aschoolboy” man with love in his heart. I always leave the show with a smile on my face and a resolve to be a better person. That’s what I wanted to share with you, my dear readers, this Christmas — a holiday tale to warm your season, your homes, and your hearts.

Merry Christmas

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The Christmas List is a thoughtful and heartwarming read.  It has A Christmas Carol vibes, but the story is very much its own.  I originally read this book because of it’s premise: a selfish man wakes up to find his obituary in the newspaper – even though he’s not dead.  It is the first thing that starts the gears moving and changes his life for the better.  This book is less sad that Richard Paul Evans other book, The Christmas Boxwhich I featured last year, which I kind of liked, because while I’m okay with sad books sometimes, I like to have some of my Christmas books be a bit happier!  This book really makes a lovely and enjoyable Christmas read!

 

Let me know if you’ve read The Christmas List, and if not, is it a book you might be interested in?


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Christmas Countdown – #7

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Hello! It’s Sunday, and so that means it’s time for another Countdown to Christmas book recommendation! Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

This week’s book is Jingle Boy by Kieran Scott.

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Sixteen-year-old Paul Nicholas is a self-confessed Christmas fanatic. That’s why he’s so smitten with Sarah—a girl who smells like peppermint and thinks picking out presents to the strains of “Winter Wonderland” is the ultimate afternoon activity. But when he catches Sarah making out with Santa Claus at the Paramus Park mall, his dad’s over-the-top lights catch the Nicholas house on fire, and his mom gets fired from Fortunoff’s because of something he did for Christmas for Sarah, Paul gets caught in a downward spiral of holiday gloom. This year, the spirit of Scrooge has settled in—and it’s not going to be pretty. Or will the spirit of the holiday prevail?

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Jingle Boy is such a fun and lighthearted Christmas book!  It is full of silliness and some slapstick humor, so I admit, some people might find this book too cheesy, but I loved it!  I loved all the Christmas-y details throughout this book, from the chapter titles being related to Christmas carols to the overall atmosphere.  The actual story line, while a bit goofy, was really entertaining.  This book is so underrated!  Nobody talks about it, and I don’t know why.  I could definitely see Jingle Boy as a movie as well.  I would so watch it!

 

Let me know if you’ve read Jingle Boy! Also, tell me, are YOU a Christmas fanatic, or more of a Scrooge? I bet y’all can guess which one I am! 🎅


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Christmas Countdown – #6

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It’s that time of year again!!  I’m so excited to be bringing back my Countdown to Christmas blog series this year!  For those of you new to the blog, Countdown to Christmas is a weekly feature where I recommend a different Christmas-y book each week to read this holiday season.

My first pick for 2017 is What Light by Jay Asher.

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Sierra’s family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it’s a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other. 

Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.

By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb’s past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love.

What Light is a love story that’s moving and life-affirming and completely unforgettable.

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What Light is such a lovely and festive holiday read!  It is one of those books that gives you that Christmas-y warm and fuzzies feeling.  It just has that all-around Christmas atmosphere. The characters in this book are great and I loved the sweet romance.  Not only did I love the romantic love, but the love between friends and family was so nice and prevalent as well. I really appreciated the overall theme of love and forgiveness in this novel.  I read this book last year, and I am really hoping to reread it again this year!  Also, if you’d like to hear more about my thoughts about What Light, I posted a complete review back in January.  You can check it out here!

 

Have any of you read this book? Let me know what you thought!


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