It’s 1972 and John is determined to finish a table for his wife Joan. He has zero experience in building tables but he swears he can finish it before Thanksgiving.
While he is doing that Joan is re-discovering her mother’s recipes. Creating the most delicious things to go on that table. But then cancer strikes and everything is up in the air.
In 2012, Lauren Mabrey discovers she is having a baby. Everyone at Glory’s Place is helping out. The house needs to be furnished and a trip to a local builder nets them a handmade table with a hidden drawer full of recipes and notes about them and what was going on at the time.
Lauren begins to try out the recipes and in no time has become a cook!
Told in two different times by two different women, this one had me crying! I had no idea this ending was coming and it was so beautiful!
Very Well Done!
NetGalley/ October 6th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Press
Christmas Cow Bells is the first in a new series called Buttermilk Creek Mystery Series.
Bryan is the author of several Cozy Mystery Series that I grab as soon as I see them!
Set in the Blue Ridge Mountains, in the lovely town of Shenandoah Springs. Brynn MacAlister has heart troubles. Heartbreak troubles that is. A change of scene is just what she needs. Along with her three cows, she settles in and begins the next chapter of her life as an organic small dairy farmer and cheesemaker.
With the town upset over Petunia’s loud mooing and mourning over her stillborn calf, Brynn is trying to find out how her neighbor died in a fire that is very suspicious.
Is this town not ready for any type of change? Because it’s beginning to look a lot like NO. And when things begin to happen on her own farm, the small town is quickly losing its charm.
Will Brynn even be alive at Christmas?
I would say that this is a solid first book in the series. I’m hoping some questions will be answered in the next book. The setting is just what you would expect in a Virginia farm town. And while some of the characters are a bit harsh, that really is life in a small town. Not everyone is nice and polite. But they were interesting and that’s what counted with me. Also the cheese. Probably a lot of the cheese.
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Christmas Hope series comes another heartwarming, inspirational story for the holidays.
CHRISTMAS HOPE #9
This is another heart warming and faith-based book in the series.
This time we meet Maddie, a little girl who has been through so much but has the most positive outlook on life.
Amy is ready to get out there and stop mourning the marriage that didn’t work out. What better place than Glory’s Place as a volunteer. Maddie has already captured her heart.
Gabe has messed up plenty in the past but for the past 5 and a half years he’s gotten sober, works at Maddies’ school and is almost done with college and getting his teaching certificate. Maddie is the highlight of Gabe’s day and she is determined to set him up with her new friend at Glory’s.
Will they all have a Christmas miracle? With this group they just may.
This series is always inspiring. And full of really good characters. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows but they always have each others backs. Faith, Family and Love.
A holiday retelling of You’ve Got Mail that will make you fall in love with the Christmas Season!
Angela Carson inherited her lighthouse turned holiday store, Heart of Christmas as well as her Grandmother’s beach home.
The business has been run by three generations of women trying to support their family and being a part of the small town of Pleasant Sands, North Carolina.
But since a new chain store has come to town, this may be the last generation to have a store.
As Angela struggles to make a decision, her niece suggests she write to Santa on her app. To get her sister off of her back, she does. And finds a pen pal with good advice and maybe a chance at love.
This was such a sweet Christmas miracle story. I hope we see more of Angela and Pleasant Sands. There are quite a few really good characters here. It wasn’t sappy but it was uplifting and made me smile a lot!
Netgalley/October 16th 2018 by St. Martin’s Griffin
I would love to live in Eternity Springs. It is truly a magical place.
Devin is perfectly happy with his life. Being a fishing guide in Australia with no wife or kids. And he loves coming home to his family in Eternity Springs. And it is during that Christmas visit that mysterious and magical things begin to happen. Doing a good deed ruins his phone and the one he has borrowed is apparently the number for the North Pole. So when he gets a Christmas Eve call from a little boy in Nashville who really wants a Dad for Christmas, something about it pulls at him.
In Nashville, Dr. Jennifer Stockton is celebrating Christmas Eve with her son when all hell breaks loose as the doors are broken down, and a SWAT team with guns is staring at her. She has been swatted. But who is this mysterious stalker who keeps finding her and terrorizing her and her son, Reilly?
When the two finally meet in Eternity Springs, Devin and all the guys are determined to help Jenna and uncover her stalker.
Will her phone Santa come through? Will she finally be able to find peace and safety for herself and Reilly? You will have to read this one to find out.
A story of family, love, healing and maybe a bit of magic!
Netgalley/September 25th 2018 by St. Martin’s Press
It seems we have made it to Friday! Hopefully all in one piece and if your children are out of school, with your marbles intact!
I’m pretty sure everyone will have a busy weekend with Christmas being Monday. The kids are packing up and heading to their Dad’s in Dallas. And here at home things are just going all haywire.
My Mother is still in hospital after falling out of Susi’s truck and breaking her pelvis and since she lives in the northern most portion of North Dakota, the hospital is probably the best place to be right now.
Our Country Club family is just that to us. Family. And at this time we are all hurting. On Monday one of the employees had a stroke at work and is now in hospital. Tommy’s boss and our bestest friend had a horrible respiratory thing last week and last night was taken to ICU with brain swelling. Tomorrow we bury Uncle Richard.
So all of our carefully laid plans just got swiped left. And while I thought the Anxiety Fairy would show her face with all of this going on and the kids out of school for holidays, apparantly she got face palmed by the Priority Fairy. People are hurting and we need to be there for them.
This next week is a time for inner reflection and a time to let go of any negativity in your life. To give thanks for all the friends and family who have gone before, for their role in our lives, a time to honor those who are still with us and to sit quietly and plan for the future. Let go of anything that hasn’t worked for you and surround yourself with positive love, energy and people.
I hope you enjoy one of my all time favorite songs!
It’s Saturday already! Time flies when you all have the flu. Luckily we are now a germ free zone.
Yesterday I scrubbed everything with the Vinegar of the Four Thieves just to be sure. Then we read a story called The Green Ghost by Marion Dane Bauer. It came out in 2008 and is a good short chapter book for young readers. It’s a Christmas story told by two little girls. We laughed, we cried and then we laughed again. It is a lovely story to share this time of year! And the five year old asked if this was Fiction or Non-Fiction and my heart melted. He’s 5 and knows the difference. So proud.
In the afternoon we made more paper snowmen and they are now every place you look. Last night we all went to the light show at Regional Park. I’m pretty sure everyone in town had the same idea as traffic was moving at a snail’s pace. After that we went over to Santa’s Village and played around and took pictures. Then it was home for cocoa and a donut. By that time everyone was falling asleep on their feet so it was off to bed for them while we watched Vikings again.
I think everyone is over the worst of it. No more all day pajama days. So it’s back to work. Finalizing plans for our Christmas get away and finishing up the TBR pile.
I imagine everyone is busy running around doing last minute shopping and baking up a storm. I hope you have great weather and a good weekend!
‘Tis the season of giving–and with this wonderful book, New York Times bestselling author Anne Perry shares a brand-new holiday mystery filled with bygone relationships and hidden secrets.
As Charlotte Pitt’s grandmother Mariah Ellison finds herself investigating a long-unsolved slaying, it becomes clear that grappling with intrigue and foul play runs in the family. A festive Christmas package left on Mariah’s doorstep contains an ominous present, sparking memories of a twenty-year-old murder that shattered her friendship with the victim’s widow. Though the gift is a bitter reminder of that tragic time, in the spirit of the season Mariah travels to Surrey in hopes of reconciling with her estranged friend and solving the crime that drove them apart.
On arrival, Mariah joins forces with the murdered man’s grandson, a sleuth in his own right who’s discovered promising evidence as well as a suspect. But Surrey’s picturesque hills conceal dark doings and shocking revelations that could make the holiday anything but calm and bright.
Decked with intrigue and trimmed with Yuletide spirit, A Christmas Return is a holiday treat wrapped in the glorious storytelling talents of the reigning master of Victorian mystery.
A bit related to the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt series, this is Ms. Perry’s Christmas novella for this year. A Historical Fiction murder mystery, one that happened many years ago.
When a mysterious package arrives for Mariah, with a letter that an old friend needs her assistance, Mariah must go back to the past and relive some not so pleasant times.
Mariah has never been the most pleasant person on the block, and here we find out why. A lot of secrets and the power of standing up and telling the truth no matter the consequences.
Is Christmas really the most wonderful time of the year? New Yorker’s Robyn Lane and Sidney Bellows aren’t so sure.
Robyn has always dated struggling creative types. For once, her parents would love her to bring someone with health insurance and a 401(k) to their Chrismukkah celebration. Her actor boyfriend doesn’t qualify. While across town, Sidney’s professional life already belongs to her parents. She’s an attorney at her father’s law firm and she works tirelessly to keep her love life private. If she brings her lawyer boyfriend to their annual Christmas extravaganza, her parents will have the wedding planned by New Year’s Eve.
A mutual friend playfully suggests they trade boyfriends for the holidays. The women share a laugh, but after copious amounts of wine, decide The Boyfriend Swap could be the perfect solution. This way, Robyn can show off her stable attorney boyfriend and Sidney’s high-society family will take no interest in her flakey actor beau.
It’s a brilliant plan—in theory. In practice—not so much. When Will turns out to be the boy-next-door Robyn crushed on hard throughout her teenage years, and Sidney’s family fawns all over Perry like he’s an Oscar-winner rather than a D-list wannabe, one thing is certain: The Boyfriend Swap might just change their lives forever.
I could definitely see this as a Hallmark Channel Movie! Especially at Christmas.
Sidney and Will haven’t been dating long and she is not looking forward to tossing him to the wolves at her family’s Christmas! Especially in a house already full of lawyers. She just wants something for herself. Agreeing to the swap Sidney gets more than she bargained for. Her entire family is charmed by Perry and Sidney may be getting a little hot under the collar for him as well.
While Robyn is bringing home the boy next door who she still has a crush on and her family thinks he is just the perfect man for her. And Robyn is beginning to think so too.
A lovely romp of a Christmas story and the stories we tell ourselves about who we are and what the people we love want for us.
TheCertifiablyTRUERavingsOfASectionedPhilosopher: Don't be afraid to think you might be a little 'crazy'. Who isn't? Check out some of my visualized poems here: https://www.instagram.com/maxismaddened/