Christmas by the Book
Nora and her husband, Simon, have run the beautiful oak-beamed book shop in their small British village for thirty years. But times are tough and the shop is under threat of closure--this Christmas season will really decide their fate. When an elderly man visits the store and buys the one book they've never been able to sell, saying it's the perfect gift for his sick grandson, it gives Nora an idea. She and Simon will send out books to those feeling down this Christmas. Maybe they can't save their bookstore, but at least they'll have one final chance to lift people's spirits through the power of reading.
After gathering nominations online, Nora and Simon quietly deliver books to six residents of the village in need of some festive cheer, including a single dad of twins who is working hard to make ends meet, a teenage boy grieving for his big sister, a local Member of Parliament who is battling depression, and a teacher who's newly retired and living on her own. As the town prepares for a white Christmas, the books begin to give the recipients hope, one by one. But with the future of the bookshop still up in the air, Nora and Simon will need a Christmas miracle--or perhaps a little help from the people whose lives they've touched--to find a happy ending of their own....
Nora and Simon Walden own The Stowford Bookshop in England. Nora inherited the shop from her mother who passed on her love of books to her. Unfortunately, the shop is currently in the red plus the taxes are due. It is hard to compete with online retailers. Another problem is that many of the people in the village are struggling so books are a luxury they cannot afford and weather is keeping the tourists away. When the oldest book in the store sells, it gives the couple an idea. They post on social media asking people if there is someone in their lives who can use a boost this holiday season. They draw out six names and send them a special Christmas book. Nora and Simon get to see how each book makes a difference in the life of the receiver. Christmas by the Book by Anne Marie Ryan is a feel-good Christmas tale. The book does get off to a slow start as we are introduced Nora and Simon. The story becomes more engaging the further I got into the book. We get to see how the books affect the receivers. The story also touches on depression. Many people are ashamed of having depression and do not discuss it with others. Winter plus the holiday season tend to make this mental health condition worse. I thought the author handled this subject very well. Christmas by the Book allows us to see how a gift can spread joy and hope. I liked how each book was right for each person’s situation. It was great to see what Nora and Simon’s idea sparked in others. The ending left me smiling. Christmas by the Book will help you get into the holiday spirit. Christmas by the Book is an uplifting holiday tale with a special sale, tax troubles, beneficial books, a dark depression, Christmas chaos, and a merry miracle.
The Avid Reader
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