Friday, December 4, 2009


Here are four of my favorite novels - most set in the run up to Christmas. So, grab your snuggie and a mug of hot cocoa and find a comfortable chair by the fireplace to curl up for a good read. (all summaries provided by

Finding Father Christmas by Robin Jones Gunn
In Finding Father Christmas, Miranda Carson's search for her father takes a turn she never expected when she finds herself in London with only a few feeble clues to who he might be. Unexpectedly welcomed into a family that doesn't recognize her, and whom she's quickly coming to love, she faces a terrible decision. Should she reveal her true identity and destroy their idyllic image of her father? Or should she carry the truth home with her to San Francisco and remain alone in this world? Whatever choice she makes during this London Christmas will forever change the future for both her and the family she can't bear to leave. Robin Jones Gunn brilliantly combines lyrical writing and unforgettable characters to craft a story of longing and belonging that will stay with readers long after they close the pages of this book.

Light on Snow by Anita Shreve
The events of a December afternoon, during which a father and his daughter find an abandoned infant in the snow, will forever alter the 11-year-old girl’s understanding of the world and the adults who inhabit it; a father who has taken great pains to remove himself from society in order to put an unthinkable tragedy behind him; a young woman who must live with the consequences of the terrible choices she has made; and a detective whose cleverness is exceeded only by his sense of justice. Written from the point of view of 30-year-old Nicky as she recalls the vivid images of that fateful December, her tale is one of love and courage, of tragedy and redemption, and of the ways in which the human heart always seeks to heal itself.

The Christmas Train by David Baldacci
Disillusioned journalist Tom Langdon must get from Washington to L.A. in time for Christmas. Forced to take the train across the country because of a slight "misunderstanding" at airport security, he begins a journey of self-discovery and rude awakenings, mysterious goings-on and thrilling adventures, screwball escapades and holiday magic. He has no idea that the locomotives pulling him across America will actually take him into the rugged terrain of his own heart, as he rediscovers people's essential goodness and someone very special he believed he had lost.

The Gift by Danielle Steele
On a June day, a young woman in a summer dress steps off a Chicago-bound bus into a small Midwestern town. She doesn't intend to stay. She is just passing through. Yet her stopping here has a reason and it is part of a story that you will never forget. The time is the 1950s, when life was simpler, people still believed in dreams, and family was, very nearly, everything. The place is a small Midwestern town with a high school and a downtown, a skating pond and a movie house. And on a tree-lined street in the heartland of America, an extraordinary set of events begins to unfold. And gradually what seems serendipitous is tinged with purpose. A happy home is shattered by a child's senseless death. A loving marriage starts to unravel. And a stranger arrives—a young woman who will touch many lives before she moves on. She and a young man will meet and fall in love. Their love, so innocent and full of hope, helps to restore a family's dreams. And all of their lives will be changed forever by the precious gift she leaves them.

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