ON THE SHELF: Jingle Books, Jingle Books, Jingle all the way

Published 8:00 am Sunday, December 11, 2022

This column was submitted by Evangeline Cessna, Local History Librarian at the Warren County-Vicksburg Public Library.

This week features Christmas stories from our New Large Print collection.

Author Leigh Bale continues her Secret Amish Babies series with her latest, “The Midwife’s Christmas Wish.” Amish midwife Lovina Albrecht finds an abandoned baby and she is determined to make sure the little girl has a home in time for Christmas. Having a baby around stirs painful memories that Lovina will need to face head-on. She is also surprised and a bit confused when her bishop assigns the standoffish Jonah Lapp to help her care for the girl. When their temporary arrangements begin to feel like a family, Lovina and Jonah must make a decision. Will they overcome past hurts and forge a bond with one another, or will they go their separate ways?

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“The Sunshine Club” is a Christmas tale by bestselling author Carolyn Brown. Gussie, Ina Mae and Blanche have been friends for more than 60 years. When they were girls, they formed The Sunshine Club and later went on to become the matchmaking queens of Newton, Texas. They were inseparable until Blanche passed away. Gussie and Ina Mae feel the best way to honor their friend is to take a shot of whiskey, blast some good music and make a match for Blanche’s niece, Sissy. They don’t care that Sissy is only in town for six weeks. They are sure that the sparks are already there between her and the handsome local preacher Luke Beauchamp. Gussie and Ida Mae up their game to make sure these two are well on their way to love by Christmas.

“A Quilt for Christmas” by Melody Carlson reminds us that family is found in the unlikeliest of places. Vera Swanson is not feeling the holiday spirit this year. She is recently widowed and has relocated to a lonely condo for one. Her neighbor Fiona Albright knocks on her door and asks for Vera’s help. Fiona’s mother is ill and her father is out of town. When Fiona finds out that Vera is a quilter, she enlists her help to make a quilt for her mother for Christmas. Vera will have to assemble a rag-tag group of ladies to help her if she wants to get it done in time. She recruits free-spirited artist Tasha, chatty empty nester Beverly, and retired therapist Eleanor to get the job done. Along the way, she may just find herself with a new family of friends.

Debbie Mason’s latest is titled “Christmas on Reindeer Road.” Mallory Maitland knows what it’s like to feel abandoned, which is why she has sworn to never give up on her late husband’s two sons. When the teens land in hot water with the local authorities, Mallory comes face to face with the handsome Chief of Police Gabriel Buchanan. She finds herself wondering what it would be like to kiss him under the mistletoe. Gabriel left his high-stress job as an NYC homicide detective so that he could focus on raising his three sons in the quiet town of Highland Falls. Since his wife died, Gabriel’s mother-in-law has been looking for any excuse to gain custody of his children. So, as his attraction to the beautiful Mallory grows, he is hesitant. Will he let himself get closer to the only woman capable of making his Christmas the best ever? Or will he resist the temptation to protect his sons from his scheming mother-in-law?

“Falling Stars” is the title of Fern Michaels’s new novel. Emily Ammerman’s family has operated the Snowdrift Summit resort in Colorado for decades. She is in her element on the slopes and ski runs. When Zach Ryder asks Emily to train him to ski The Plunge, one of Colorado’s most treacherous runs, she agrees. Zach is a famous actor who plays a dashing CIA agent on television — and he’s just as charming in real life. Not everyone in town is impressed, though. They are worried about the type of people that will be drawn to their town now that it has a famous resident. Emily has a secret, and it’s one she can’t share with anyone, especially Zach: she is his biggest fan. She is also a professional, so she’ll train him until he is ready to tackle any slope. She is determined not to fall in love with him the way so many others have. But does fate have different plans for the two?

Annie Rains pens a sweet holiday romance with her novel, “A Forever Home.” Single mom Della Rose is hoping for a Christmas miracle to make it back home in time for her son’s holiday concert. She never imagined Santa would arrive in the form of her hunky, but grumpy seatmate Roman Everson. When their flight gets delayed, she needs Roman to drive her back to Somerset Lake even if his joyless mood threatens to strip her of her own Christmas cheer. Though Roman is feeling like a grinch, he needs a favor from Della as well. In exchange for a ride home, he wants her to pose as his adoring girlfriend in front of his family. As they set off on their journey through the North Carolina mountains with a rescue dog named Jingle, they soon learn that they have a lot more in common than they could have imagined. Do opposites really attract? And will the chance of a happily-ever-after make this the most wonderful time of year?