Saturday, September 30, 2017

12 Days at Bleakly Manor: Once Upon a Dickens Christmas

Welcome Back!   Merry and Bright by Debbie Macomber will be available on October 3.  I look forward to reading Debbie Macomber's latest Christmas novel each year.  Ella's Journey by Lynne Francis is a historical British novel that will be published on October 5.  Seashells, Spells and Caramels by Erin Johnson is a new cozy mystery with paranormal elements that will be published on October 31 (it is not listed on Amazon yet).  

12 Days at Bleakly Manor by Michelle Griep is the first book in Once Upon a Dickens Christmas.  Clare Chapman lost everything nine months ago.  She is surprised when she receives an invitation to spend twelve days Bleakly Manor.  If Clare lasts the full duration, she will receive a sum of 500 pounds.  When Clare arrives at the manor, she finds she was not the only person to receive the unusual invitation and promised something in return.  Ben Lane was arrested on his way to marry Clare for a crime he did not commit.  He was promised his freedom if he stays through the twelfth day of Christmas.  Their anonymous host has decided that only one of the guests will win their promised prize.  Which guest will last the full twelve days and what is the person willing to do to win? 

12 Days at Bleakly Manor is a well-crafted and entertaining novel.  It is short, but it is packed full of action and intrigue.  The mystery was delightful (see if you can figure out the culprit in this one) and the characters interesting.    I like the Christian beliefs expressed in the story (compassion, prayer, faith, forgiveness, second chances, God is in control, trust, and hope).  The Christian theme is light but the point is gotten across.  My rating for 12 Days at Bleakly Manor is 4 out of 5 stars (I liked it).  The author combined Bleak House by Charles Dickens with And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie in 12 Days at Bleakly Manor.  I appreciated the colorful, unique characters (especially the lady with the mice) that Ms. Griep created.  I am looking forward to the next installment in Once Upon a Dickens Christmas in A Tale of Two Hearts.  

If you enjoy reading Christian Christmas stories, check out Colors of Christmas by Olivia Newport.  Thank you for visiting.  I will be reviewing Purring Around the Christmas Tree by Liz Mugavero next time.  May you have a satisfying and relaxing Saturday. Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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