Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mistletoe Prayers by Betsy St. Amant

Summary from the back of the book: Allie James returns to her hometown in need of a holiday job. Never did she expect old boyfriend Jordan Walker to hire her as his secretary! Years ago, Jordan shredded her heart like wrapping paper. Now he must convince Allie that all he wants for Christmas is her love.

My thoughts: I tried to put my ideas together in paragraph form but couldn’t get them to gel completely. So, I’m making bullet points.

• I enjoyed the characters. (I’m a sucker for first loves reuniting.) Allie and Jordan were well-developed, and their actions were realistic…nothing over the top as is sometimes expected in romances.

• Betsy captured the heart of a small-town well. Allie and Jordan grew up smothered in the smallness of Ginger Falls, fled the town and each other to big cities, and eventually made their way back to the town, realizing that the small town they thought was holding them back was the comfort and security they needed.

• I loved the festivities in the book—cute Christmas ideas.

• I hate reading books with a helpless woman being “rescued” by the man. (It’s one reason I don’t read a lot of romance novels.) I was excited that Allie was the one who was helping Jordan revive the town. Her ideas were the ones that helped put the town back on the map.

• The downside: The story was short—only a little over a 100 pages. It would have been nice to have had a longer story to see the relationship between Allie and her mother and sister develop. (This book was two stories in one, so that explains the brevity of the story.) Typical of Love Inspired books, the couple reunites in a happily ever after fashion, but with the harsh reality of today's world, sometimes you need a happy ending.

Overall, this book is a heart-warming Christmas tale to enjoy over a cup of hot chocolate (even though it’s still hot as all get out here in Texas)!

Visit Betsy St. Amant at her blog:
Find the book on Amazon: Buy Mistletoe Prayers

Thanks, Betsy, for giving me this book to review. I enjoyed it!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Dying to Meet You

Summary: A washed-up writer Mr. Grumply moves into a mansion on Cemetery Road in a last-ditch effort to salvage his writing career. Living in the house requires him to take responsibility for Seymore, a young boy who loves to draw and hang out with the ghost of the house. Will they be able to coexist, much less become friends?

My thoughts: I picked up this book because it's on the Bluebonnet list for this school year. The book is a fun read. It's told through letters from characters and the town's newspaper, which makes it a fast read. The illustrations (artwork by character Seymore) add to the overall fun feel to the book. The characters are funny and unique. The book is also a good introduction to irony and a few puns. The only downside was the the book could have used another ten or fifteen pages. The conflict is wrapped up a little too quickly. Overall, a good Bluebonnet book for the more reluctant readers.