For #ThrowbackThursday I’m sharing some of my favorite reads from the past WITH review!
“Peace & Goodwill (A Minstrel Series Novella)”
by Hope Franke Strauss (aka YA & Cozy Mystery author Lee Strauss)
Genre: Romance/Inspirational Fiction/Holiday
Release Date: November 17, 2014
*This is a Christmas Novella
**Peace & Goodwill is set in A Guitar Girl Romance world but can be read alone.
Belle gets the best Christmas present ever, a man in uniform! Ian is a soldier home on leave. Neither of them have any idea how good it will feel to fall in love or how hard it will be to say goodbye.
Anna is spending the holidays alone again with only her faithful dog Angel to keep her company. She can’t afford to pay the rent and her landlord threatens to kick her out. At least she’s finished with her chemo treatments. She can be thankful for that. Plus, there’s Rhys, the handsome visitor with kind eyes.
One fateful, cold and snowy night a chance encounter changes everything. Love is lost. Love is found. Life will never be the same.
The story in Peace & Goodwill was inspired by Hans Christian Anderson’s famous classic, The Little Matchstick Girl.
***Covers and book title may be different.
September 14, 2015
Bittersweet & Beautiful!
This is not your typical Ho-Ho-Ho holiday piece. Sadness and pain greeted me almost from the beginning of this short read. Belle is a young woman all alone in the world and trying to avoid another holiday with her employer’s family… and their pitying and less than tolerant glances. Anna is a bit older, destitute and terminally ill with only her faithful dog, Angel, at her side. My heart went out to both women. So much loss and missed opportunities. So much loneliness. Endless self-esteem issues… always feeling unworthy.
But, this story begins just before Christmas, so for all the pain, there is happiness; for all the loneliness, there is hope; and for all the loss, there is love. Just when things appear to be sorted out, the cruelty of an insensitive landlord ripped my heart out and set this story on a different course that brought tears to my eyes – before slapping me with the mother of all plot twists! While it made me even sadder for a time, it was true genius – I never saw that coming!
I had a feeling our compassionate man on the street would play a pivotal role but wasn’t sure where he’d fit. But the chance meeting Christmas night (or should I say rescue?) blends right in to take the story in yet ANOTHER direction.
This read is bittersweet, but wonderful, with so many twists and turns… and a healthy dose of love. And, what would a holiday story be without a Christmas Miracle… or two?