Christmas has thrown up in my house and in the world around me. I worked Black Friday to come home to an erected tree with twinkling lights and ugly ornaments I made with my son as a Thanksgiving craft and lights strung around my porch. I know my husband just did it because our son loves it and there are only a few magical Christmas years ahead for our little family. So we will enjoy it, exhausting as it is, while it lasts.
In keeping with this, the two Christmas reads to kick off December are both heavy on the family. Lots of grown up siblings entangled in the dramas of their own lives. Perfect and fun if that is your thing.
The Christmas Wedding, James Patterson
Also, this is my first James Patterson book. I have mentioned before I am trying to be better about giving a chance to the super popular authors whose work sells in Wal-Marts and in impulse buy lanes and end up in the donated books in the box in the break room. Trying to reduce my own prolific snobbery. So this one can break the seal on that.
And break the seal it did. It is about a widow who asks her four grown children to return on Christmas to attend her surprise second wedding with an unknown groom. There is the usual family drama to keep things interesting, but this is a heavily Christmas-y, heart warming Christmas tale, I think done pretty well with a man writing from the point of view of an older woman who has raised four children.
It was exactly what it promised to be. The sweet diversion of a book just under five hours with some drive time and walk time in there. There was enough family drama without it being too nerve wracking and intense. I have to admit I was not completely on edge about who the bride was going to choose because the story was more than that, and I cared about other plotlines just as much as her little story about choosing one of three men who had all asked her and were waiting to be chosen. And it felt more solidly Christmas related than the Holly Martins that I very much enjoyed that I reviewed last week. Maybe because this story was more American? Don’t know, but I am glad the library had it on audio for me to borrow.
Winter Street, Elin Hilderbrand
I had bought this one last year for the parade of Christmas reads and did not get around to it. Was apparently reading about too many other wet panties, I guess.
This one was very similar to The Christmas Wedding in that it had to do with a grown up family coming together for a rare adult sibling Christmas. The drama in this one is actually around a stepmother leaving a father and their son serving in Afghanistan who all the kids are worried about, as well as the ex wife.
Every sibling has their own story, their own love story or professional story, and you get to hear everyone’s piece: about how the family was started and how it changed over time to make the characters in the story giving each other sensible adult gifts and fervently wishing the best for one another.
This is actually the first in a series and I might read more of the series as I go. I did like it, it was fun without being overdone. I love the stories of families. I think it is why I work with them professionally, and I think about how characters in stories become who they are because of how they started off in a family. Another recommend. It has some love stories but it’s about all kinds of love.
Next week is more Christmas reads. I will be attending a Santa breakfast and doing all sorts of holiday related stuff with my son.
Thinking about what my reading in the new year is going to look like and what my goals are for 2018. Also, I have like a read and a half for Read Harder to make it through. I swear I am still working on it. The last two categories I am reading might kill me.