I've been ordering holiday fiction for months now. Since May, actually. So while I know you're not quite ready for this yet, I'm sharing anyway. If you can't bear it yet, bookmark the page and come back in a month. Deal?
Christmas Bells, by Jennifer Chiaverini. Inspired by the classic poem "Christmas Bells" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chiaverini's new novel alternates between 1860 and present-day Boston. In 1860, the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow family celebrated Christmas at Craigie House, their home in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The publication of Longfellow’s classic Revolutionary War poem, “Paul Revere’s Ride,” was less than a month hence, and the country’s grave political unrest weighed heavily on his mind. Yet with his beloved wife, Fanny, and their five adored children at his side, the delights of the season prevailed.
In present-day Boston, a dedicated teacher in the Watertown public school system is stunned by somber holiday tidings. Sophia’s music program has been sacrificed to budget cuts, and she worries not only about her impending unemployment but also about the consequences to her underprivileged students. At the church where she volunteers as music director, Sophia tries to forget her cares as she leads the children’s choir in rehearsal for a Christmas Eve concert. Inspired to honor a local artist, Sophia has chosen a carol set to a poem by Longfellow, moved by the glorious words he penned one Christmas Day long ago, even as he suffered great loss.
Winter Stroll, by Elin Hilderbrand. After the queen of summer struck gold with her first Christmas novel, Winter Street, last year, it seems only logical that she'd treat readers to a second holiday with the Quinn family on Nantucket in this sequel. Christmas on Nantucket finds Winter Street Inn owner Kelley Quinn and his family busily preparing for the holiday season. Though the year has brought tragedy, the Quinns have much to celebrate: Kelley has reunited with his first wife Margaret, Kevin and Isabelle have a new baby; and Ava is finally dating a nice guy.
But when Kelley's estranged wife Mitzi shows up on the island, along with Kevin's devious ex-wife Norah and a dangerously irresistible old fling of Ava's, the Inn is suddenly overrun with romantic feuds, not to mention guests. With jealousy, passion, and eggnog consumption at an all-time high, it's going to take a whole lot more than a Christmas miracle to get the Quinns--and the Inn--through the holidays intact. The library has a bunch of copies on order, and holds have been stacking up all summer. Get in on the action soon, as this hits the shelves October 13.
At first they drive in silence, but forced into close quarters Ashley and Dash can’t help but open up. Not only do they find they have a lot in common, but there’s even a spark of romance in the air. Their feelings catch them off guard—never before has either been so excited about a first meeting. Though Ashley and Dash may never reach Seattle in time for Christmas, the season is still full of surprises—and their greatest wishes may yet come true.