Naomi’s Gift by Amy Clipston
Naomi has begun to believe that she isn’t meant to find love, but she might receive more than she has ever hoped for this Christmas.
Twenty-four-year-old Naomi King has all but given up on marriage and children. As Christmas approaches, Naomi is certain that her life will be spent as an old maid, helping with the family’s quilting business and taking care of her eight siblings. Then she meets Caleb, a young widower with a 7-year-old daughter, and her world is once again turned upside-down.
An Unexpected Joy by Ruth Reid
Abigail has driven other suitors away, but can Micah find a way to show her he cares?
Being a caregiver for Micah Zook’s grandmother is the answer to Abigail’s prayers. In fact, the elderly lady keeps finding ways to set Abigail up with her grandson. Despite Abigail’s constant chatter, Micah realizes he’s beginning to care for her—until he makes a decision that leaves her feeling betrayed. With Christmas in their midst, can Micah find a way to reconcile with Abigail and to reveal the true feelings of his heart?
A Christmas Visitor by Kelly Irvin
Frannie Mast returns to Bee County for Christmas, but her heart stays back in Missouri with an Englisch farm boy.
Frannie knows her parents have the best of intentions when they send her back to Bee County, Texas, to live with her aunt and her aunt’s new husband Mordecai. After all, Frannie knows nothing can come of a relationship with Rocky, the handsome Englisch farm boy back in Missouri. But all bets are off when Rocky follows Frannie to Texas to plead his case. Could he be the Christmas gift to end all gifts?
This book offers three lovely stories to get readers ready for Christmas to come.
In Naomi’s Gift, Naomi and Caleb are two characters in a typical Christian romance. They are wounded from the past and a little hesitant to risk their hearts again. Readers are reminded that all things are possible with faith. The best character is Caleb’s daughter, who loves Naomi even before Caleb does.
It was entertaining to read about the family struggles that occur even in Amish families over the holidays, especially with Caleb’s matchmaking sister. Any single person approaching the holiday season can relate to the inevitable matchmaking that seems to go hand in hand with family dinners!
My favorite of the three books was An Unexpected Joy. Abigail was such a lovable character, with a charming flaw. I enjoyed reading about Micah’s gradual thawing of his reticence over her chatter. I also appreciated the attention that the author gave to PTSD and that it can even impact Amish communities. It was interesting to read about the struggles of Abigail’s cousins as they were coping with the realities of being shunned and her courage in providing for them.
A Christmas Visitor was a nice was to end the collection. I’ve never read a book where an English man was contemplating joining the Amish community to be with the girl he loved. This book had the added charm of not knowing what would happen at the end. I wasn’t quite sure whether Frannie and Rocky would end up together. That is very rare in a romance story!
If you are looking for a light, easy read to get you ready for the Christmas season, this is a great choice. They stories are quick to read, and filled with lovable characters. Plus, they are short enough that you can fit them in between shopping trips or waiting for Christmas recital practices to end!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Fiction Guild in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.