Thursday, October 16, 2014

Reading Ahead: November 2014, part 4

I realize that there are two kinds of people in this world when it comes to holidays: those who eagerly anticipate, and those who dread. If you're part of the first category, you're in luck, because I have a few holiday-themed novels you might want to add to your reading list to help you get into the spirit of things. If you're part of the latter group, I apologize. Feel free to skip this post and come back next Tuesday.

The Mistletoe Promise, by Richard Paul Evans. Elise Dutton dreads the arrival of another holiday season. Three years earlier, her husband cheated on her with her best friend, resulting in a bitter divorce that left her alone, broken, and distrustful. Then, one November day, a stranger approaches Elise in the mall food court. Though she recognizes the man from her building, Elise has never formally met him. Tired of spending the holidays alone, the man offers her a proposition. He suggests that they pretend to be a couple for the next eight weeks, with a few ground rules, one of which is that the contract is void as of Christmas Day. What Elise never considered was that this might be just what she needed to mend her broken heart, or that she's not the only one with secrets to keep. A love story for the holidays.

A New York Christmas, by Anne Perry. For the first time, Perry's Christmas offering moves to the young metropolis of New York. The year is 1904. Twenty-three-year-old Jemima Pitt, the daughter of Thomas Pitt, head of Britain’s Special Branch, is crossing the Atlantic. She is traveling with an acquaintance, Delphinia Cardew, who is to marry the aristocratic Brent Albright in a high-society New York wedding—a grand affair that will join together two fabulously wealthy families, titans of the international financial world. But Jemima senses a mysterious shadow darkening the occasion. Missing from the festivities is Delphinia’s mother, Maria, who is marked by disgrace. Nearly sixteen years ago, Maria abandoned young Delphinia and disappeared—and now the Albrights refuse to mention her name. But when Harley, the groom’s charismatic brother, asks Jemima to help him search for Maria and forestall the scandal that would surely follow if the prodigal parent turned up at the wedding, she agrees to assist him, never suspecting that she is walking into mortal danger herself. Mystery lovers will appreciate a serious story with a holiday flair.

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