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The Christmas Blessing by Melody Carlson
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The Christmas Blessing (edition 2017)

by Melody Carlson (Author)

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2815389,858 (4.25)None
Member:Tea58
Title:The Christmas Blessing
Authors:Melody Carlson (Author)
Info:Revell (2017), 176 pages
Collections:Untitled collection
Rating:*****
Tags:San Diego, California, Philippine Islands, Rockford, Montana, family, blessings, trials, friendship, war, Navy, airplane flying, pilots, POW, Japanese, Japan, small towns, wealth, abandonment, death, parents, grandparents, sisters, Christmas, infants, romance

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The Christmas Blessing by Melody Carlson

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Ms. Carlson is back with another emotionally moving Christmas novella. I love her Christmas novellas and will forever read them. She brings wonderful messages from God and mixes them into a captivating story line, and blends it all with characters that steal your heart and become your family til the end.

This Christmas story is set during one of my favorite time periods to read about: WWII, and follows Amelia and her son. I loved how Ms. Carlson transported me back in time. I loved following Amelia on her journey of pain and hope, and longing. The way I felt reading this book, seeing Amelia come to terms with her situation, seeing God work on her heart, really refreshed my own.

If you love stories filled with hope, longing and an ending that will leave you wanting more from a superbly talented author, then this 5 star book is for you. Ms. Carlson delivers her readers a novella that you won't soon forget! Well done!

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a review, positive or negative.* ( )
  CafinatedReads | Oct 12, 2017 |
Amelia and her fiancé James had planned to marry right away, but she hears that he's been killed in the war, shot down with his plane. Hence, Amelia can't legally claim the benefits of a war widow, even when she gives birth to James's child, Jimmy. With nowhere else to turn, Amelia seeks out James's parents--even though they don't know that she and Jimmy exist in The Christmas Blessing by author Melody Carlson.

I've enjoyed a few World War II Christmas novellas in the past. Without reading much of the blurb for this one, I took a gander at the soft, Christmassy book cover and decided to check it out.

I think this story has much that fans of nostalgic WWII fiction will enjoy. The plot is serious, but not too heavy, and the holiday theme is strong. Except for the very end, which may be somewhat rushed, I found the pacing to be steady, even a bit slow at points, as characters stop to think or re-think things over maybe a little more than necessary. However, I can appreciate a complete tale on the shorter side that doesn't hurry through or skimp on all the important parts.

There's some "info-dumping" in the opening conversation, and although it's not unrealistic for a woman in Amelia's position to cry a lot, her sobbing loses some of its effect on the page when it happens over and over. Also, I hope this isn't something widely common that I'm just starting to notice in general now, but it seems that far too many sentences in the story begin with the word "And," until it feels monotonous. I'm not sure if this issue appears in the final version of the book; I read an ARC.

Overall, it was refreshing to find a holiday tale that wasn't completely predictable to me, and I think many other ChristFic readers will like this one.
__________
Revell provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review. ( )
  NadineC.Keels | Oct 8, 2017 |
When she receives the news in late 1944 that her baby's father was shot down in the South Pacific, Amelia Richards loses hope. Jobless and broke, she has nowhere to turn for help but her infant's paternal grandparents. The only problem is, they don't know that she--or their grandson--exists. When Amelia discovers that the family is wealthy and influential, dare she disclose the truth of her relationship with their son? Or could the celebration of the arrival of another unexpected baby nearly two thousand years ago be the answer to her dilemma?

Beloved author Melody Carlson pens a story of love, hardship, and reconciliation that will leave readers filled with Christmas joy. ( )
  polarmath | Oct 2, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I enjoyed reading this book. The book had believable characters and a surprise ending. The character I found most endearing was Dr. Bradley. He had a warm and generous heart but he had realistic view of life and people. ( )
  janetcg | Oct 2, 2017 |
Melody Carlson is known for her heart-warming Christmas novellas, and many readers kick off the season with one of her new books. For the 2017 holidays, readers are in for a treat. The Christmas Blessing is part romance, part family drama, and all feel-good reading experience.

In the midst of WWII, young mother Amelia Richards embarks on a life-changing trip with her 7-week old baby. From sunny San Diego, Amelia travels to Montana to find a family for her and her young son. But life is hard on Amelia — first she has her funds stolen, then she and her baby, Jimmy, become ill. Desperate to provide for Jimmy, Amelia makes a hard decision. Will Jimmy and Amelia finally find a home?

The Christmas Blessing is a quick read; I finished it in one day. But don’t think that it is not long on all the things you like about a novella from Carlson. Characters, especially Amelia and Helene, will capture the reader’s heart. Both women love their sons fiercely and are determined to protect them. The setting is perfect for a nostalgic Christmas read — small town Montana from Thanksgiving to Christmas. The quaint town, the snowy scenery, and the chill in the air will make you snuggle up in an afghan with a cup of cocoa or tea. The drama surrounding Amelia may be a bit old-fashioned, but not that different from struggles single mothers face today. Although Amelia’s plight seems hopeless, there is a definite happily-ever-after in store for her and the reader. Carlson also makes sure that faith in God is woven naturally throughout the book.

If you are looking for a book to get you in the holiday mood, then The Christmas Blessing is a good choice.

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

(Thanks to Revell for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.) ( )
  vintagebeckie | Oct 2, 2017 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0800722701, Hardcover)

When she receives the news in late 1944 that her baby's father was shot down in the South Pacific, Amelia Richards loses hope. Jobless and broke, she has nowhere to turn for help but her infant's paternal grandparents. The only problem is, they don't know that she--or their grandson--exists. When Amelia discovers that the family is wealthy and influential, dare she disclose the truth of her relationship with their son? Or could the celebration of the arrival of another unexpected baby nearly two thousand years ago be the answer to her dilemma?

Beloved author Melody Carlson pens a story of love, hardship, and reconciliation that will leave readers filled with Christmas joy.

(retrieved from Amazon Sun, 02 Apr 2017 09:04:02 -0400)

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