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Chapter 51 - The Twelve Days of Christmas, Part Two

Happy New Year's Eve friends! I can't believe we have come to the end of another year and are ready to close the book on 2018 and start a new one. This is always a time of reflection for me as for many people. I review what was good about the year, what could have been better and how I can bring more joy, peace and happiness to myself and others in the next year.

It can be a hard plan to follow but talking about books is always a good start. So, without further delay, here are the next six books to take you through the final six days of The Twelve Days of Christmas.

Day 7 - Classic - A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. This is perhaps Dickens' best known work and if you have never read Dickens before perhaps this will whet your appetite for more. While everyone knows the story of Ebeneezer Scrooge, the novella is rich in imagery and spirit.

Day 8 - Memoir - Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes . Rhimes is the genius behind Grey's Anatomy and other TV shows. She got the idea for her own "year of yes" because her sister sad to her, " You never say yes to anything." That was her own wakeup call and she started her "yes" journey. A great read if you feel you are too busy to enjoy life.

Day 9 - Western - The Sisters Brothers by Patrick DeWitt. I know, I know who wants to read a Western? But seriously, folks, this is a good book. The Sisters Brothers are hired killers in 1851 Oregon. The are hired to hund down a prospector in California and to steal his formula for lighting up gold in the streams and so the story begins.

Day 10 - Cozy Mystery - Murder in the Mystery Suite by Ellery Adams. A "cozy mystery" is one where violence is downplayed and the crime and detection take place in a small, town. Ellery Adams writes a number of mystery series but this one is the first of her Book Retreat series. It takes place at Storyton Hall in western Virginia.

Day 11 - Literary Fiction - War Trash by Ha Jin. Ha Jin is a Chinese author who lives in the US and writes in English. This book was recommended by the author, Lisa See, and for good reason. It is about a former North Korean POW who tells his story for his American grandchildren.

Day 12 - History - Darkest Hour: How Churchill Brought England Back from the Brink by Anthony McCarten. Days after becoming Prime Minister, Winston Churchill helped bolster the spirit of the British people, gain the confidence of Parliament and spur the evacuation of soldiers from Dunkirk. This is a terrific World War II read.

And there you have it, your guide to books to read during the dark days of January! If you have any suggestions for this list, please let me know.

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