Saturday, December 24, 2011

HBRC Day 9 - Book with a Christmas Theme or Setting

Merry Christmas Eve.  For today's activity I want everyone to think about books that have Christmas as an important part of the story.  Post the cover and the synopsis so we can see what it is about.  

Karin's Choice:

[I'm using the same one I used last year because it is still my favorite book involving Christmas.  I listened to it on audio and really enjoyed it.]

DASH AND LILY'S BOOK OF DARES by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

So begins the latest whirlwind romance from the New York Times bestselling authors of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?

Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have written a love story that will have readers perusing bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.

Julie's Choice:

This year I have been trying to read some Christmas stories during the month of December. So far my favorite has been:

Christmas Valley is in for a surprise this Christmas when a young couple shows up in a very colorful bus. The wife is very pregnant and the bus is broken down. Also in town for Christmas is Myrtle, an old woman who manages to get on everyone's nerves as the days go on. Through this young couple and this old woman the townsfolk end up with a very interesting "live" nativity. The message of the story is that you never know when you may be entertaining angels unaware.  


    I tried to leave a comment last night at 12:01am. I got my post in at 11:58pm!! Close!
    We had a BAD tragedy last night. I tried and tried to leave a comment, but couldn't. My Father In Law left us last night. He had been ill for a LONG time. We had received a phone call a little earlier, about 11:30pm, that it looked like he had less than 24 hours. Little did we know he would only last only one hour and 15 minutes. He really BEAT THE ODDS! On Monday this week, he turned the corner for the worse. He and I had been emailing back and forth for months since he moved down to Hawaii to live with my SIL and her hubby and kids! They ALSO flew down his Caretaker, the LOVE of his life, Wanda!! His wife here, left him!!! That is another story, but I am focusing on Wanda. She is SUCH A SPECIAL WOMAN!!! So is the ENTIRE family of my sister in law's! They both make a LOT of money and, for one, are ABLE to live in Hawaii, and moved my FIL there so he could get OUT of Michigan!! They honestly SAVED HIS LIFE for another YEAR by doing so! At first he got a LOT better, out of the horrible weather Michigan can bring. If he had stayed here, we would have lost him last winter. He was driving around on a scooter, going to the beach, learned the Hawaiian language, and changed his name to Hanuman. Meaning 'Turtle Man'. He went to Turtle Beach there on Oahu, just 20 minutes away from his home. My SIL is a Veterinarean. They made SURE the baby turtles made it to sea from the beach, so no critters would dine on them before making it to sea. I can't remember the statistics he told us of the turtles that make it, but it is not many from birth to adulthood. Over time he did get worse, but then they flew Wanda down there to stay with them and help him to his final days.
    Our time, he would have passed on Christmas Eve, but in Hawaiian time, it would have still been the 23rd. I like to think of it as him going out with a BANG! On Christmas Eve! That is the kind of man he is/was. When he did something, he did it BIG!
    We talked to Wanda today, and my SIL is just doing okay. The two grandkids said "At least Wanda is still here with us." UGH. She wants to move back home here. She decided to stay on another two weeks so as not to hurt the grandkids, or have them confused as to why both of them left at the same time. It's sad, but, at the same time, he is no longer suffering. He had that Mesothelioma, which caused a host of other lung problems. NEVER smoked a day in his life. When I was talking to Wanda earlier, I could hear him gurgling. It was SO sad. We are very sad today. I couldn't sleep last night. I stayed up and kept busy, despite having bad spasms all day. I guess I was trying to change my mind. I saved ALL our emails!! I am going to print them out and make a little book out of them! He also wrote several short stories, and I just might publish one or two of them on my blog, we'll see.
    But, time to move on and try to enjoy the holiday! He is at peace, finally. We are NOT at peace, but are we ever when we lose a loved one? No.
    Hubby and I are still going to try and enjoy the holiday. We have LOTS of good eats here! Too many for what 'we' need! I baked some Amish Friendship bread, and know I am sending some out to you, virtually!! Did you catch it? Isn't is GOOD!!!! Enjoy!
    Again, Merry Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Laurie Carlson

  2. Julie
    I almost forgot! I am reading The Christmas Bus right now!! I LOVE it!!! I really like Melody Carlson! She is a VERY GOOD writer!! I would like to read some of her everday books. It would be interesting to see if her Christmas writing is different than her everyday writing, wouldn't it? I think so! GREAT choice!!
    So far I LOVE the book!
    I just finished another Christmas book that I am SURE WILL become a classic!! Tomorrow, if time permits, I am going to write a review on it! It is called "The Man in the Cinder Clouds" by Rick Daley. It is about the origin of Santa!! It is quite a spin on what we know already! It is VERY good! I honestly think it COULD become a Christmas CLASSIC!! You should pick it up. He's an Indie author, and I think the book 'might' be 99cents right now??? Not sure???
    It is not that long, but the story is RICH! Enjoy it if you do get it!
    Laurie Carlson
    laurieisreading at gmail dot com

  3. Laurie, so sorry for your loss. It is always hard to lose someone, but then when it is around the holiday's it seems so much worse. Will pray for comfort for you and your family.

    I love Amish Friendship Bread! I made it several years ago. Hated keeping up with it every day though and then trying to find someone to give it to each week. ha!

    Glad you are enjoying The Christmas Bus. I haven't heard of the other book you mentioned. Will have to check it out.

    Merry Christmas!


  4. Julie,
    Thanks for the sympathy note on my FIL passing. I appreciate it.
    Yes, the Amish Friendship bread DOES take a LOT of work! You know you CAN FREEZE the starter loaves for a later date, if you want! It works perfect, as I have tried it!!
    You will really like Christmas at Harrington's by Melody Carlson! Especially if you liked the Christmas Bus!!
    I just put Dash and Lilly's Book of Dares on my Wishlist!! What a GREAT idea! I'd LOVE to read that one!!
    Thanks again!


Julie and Karin are anxious to hear what you have to say. Leave a comment.