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Chapter 44 - I'll Be Home For Christmas

I noticed the other day that my favorite bookstore, Bookends in North Myrtle Beach, has their Christmas books out, on display, and ready to go. I love books which take place during or around Christmas. I am not a Hallmark movie person (no judgement please!) but I suspect my love for Christmas themed books is kind of like watching a Hallmark Christmas movie. Christmas books always make me feel warm and cozy. Even though I may be sitting in South Carolina or even further south for the holiday, they bring back memories of cold days, snow events, family gatherings, and lots of good food.

Here are some of my favorite Christmas books which I hope will give you the same kind of vibes.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - This is a classic which I truly try to read every year. The movie with George C. Scott is always on our watch list at this time and is very true to the book. The story of Ebeneezer Scrooge and the visitation of three ghosts is always a powerful read. Dickens was a brilliant writer and his social commentary was spot on during his time and still resonates today. I am sure there are more than a few lessons yet to be learned by reading his books.

The Man Who Invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived Our Holiday Spirits by Les Standisford - Follow up A Christmas Carol with this nonfiction book about the writing of the book. In 1843 Charles Dickens was deeply in debt and looking for a way to keep his creditors away. When his publisher refused the book, Dickens put everything he had into the little book. While he worried that the book would end his writing career, it became a best seller and here is the story. There is a movie made from this book too which is on my list for this year.

One Day in December by Josie Silver - A quick glance at a bus stop at the end of horrible day of work and Laurie is sure that the guy she sees is the one. After spending a year looking for him she meets him at a Christmas party when her room mate, Sarah, introduces Jack as her latest boyfriend. What follows is ten years of friendship, missed chances, misunderstandings, and ultimately, a really good Christmas story.

The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand - This is a young adult book that is right up there with A Christmas Carol. Five years ago Holly Chase was visited on Christmas Eve by three ghosts who told her she needed to change her ways. She didn't. Suddenly she dies at 17 and finds herself in the afterlife as part of Project Scrooge. Her role is as the Ghost of Christmas Past and, quite possibly, the Scrooge she needs to deal with is worse than she ever was. This is a great read of second chances and the true spirit of Christmas.

The Noel Letters by Richard Paul Evans - Noel Post, an editor for a major NY publishing house, returns to her childhood home in Utah to see her estranged, dying father. What she envisioned as a quick visit ends up as something longer as she inherits her father's bookstore. Once there she begins receiving letters from an anonymous source containing information about her life and future. As Christmastime approaches she learns something that changes everything she though she knew.

Do you have any Christmas book recommendations? I'd love to hear them!


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