Four more Christmas audiobooks for my Christmas Readathon. All were enjoyable with wonderful narrators. Some more Christmasy than others.
Published September 29th 2020 by Mira Books, Harlequin Audio
Sheila Roberts Christmas story this year is one that sounds like a perfect way to spend a Christmas holiday. For various reasons a group of people have chosen to take a European river cruise and manage to meet each other on the ship and become a little group that stick together for the duration. This group is made up of A new widow and her friend, a widower/divorcee who is being protected from “gold-diggers” by his daughter, two sisters (one unmarried, one with issues in her marriage) and a chocolatier who is onboard to help his brother chaperone a group of students.
The story is told from various points of view. We learn how each of the group ended up taking this cruise and some made my eyes leak. With so many characters, it was hard to get to know them all, and some were just there as support. Basically this story is about Rudy and Catherine as well as Sophie and Trevor. I enjoyed listening to how they got to know each other and Trevor provided some humour to the story. As we get to know more about the characters they all became relatable to me and I would love to find out what happened to each of them. This was a fun story and I enjoyed traveling vicariously through these characters eyes. I hope that we will be able to travel again some day, but for now, this was my Christmas Cruise for 2020. I did a read/listen with this story and the audiobook was narrated by Ann Marie Gideon. I have listened to several books she has narrated and enjoy her performances. She has good expression and tone. The voices she gives various characters are differentiated well, including the male ones. A great choice for this story. I was gifted a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.
Mistletoe and Mr. Right (Moose Springs, Alaska #2) by Sarah Morgenthaler
Published October 6th 2020 by Sourcebooks Casablanca, Tantor Audio
Moose Springs, Alaska is a town that relies on tourism to keep going, but the residents don’t really like the fact that there are tourists in town. A catch-22 for sure. Lana Montgomery is a rich socialite, part of a family business that buys up property to be developed. She is trying to put together a condo project for Moose Springs, but not to make money, to help keep the town viable. She wants to prove she belongs, that she loves the town and the people who live there. In fact, in this story, she comes to love one resident more than the others. Rick Harding has secretly had a crush on Lana for several years. Now that his ex has left town and his business is failing, he realizes this might be his chance. Lana and Rick team up to catch the Christmas Moose, the one that is single-handedly destroying everyone’s Christmas decorations.
This is a humorous story that had me laughing out loud a few times. There are also some serious and sad parts to balance out the storyline. Lana wants to help Moose Springs thrive and the residents to keep their businesses going, but to do that, she has to convince her mother that it is a good fit for their company. She also has to convince those same residents that she is trying to help them, not destroy their way of life. As Lana keeps trying, and keeps being shut down, Rick falls more and more in love with her. I don’t want to give away anymore of the story, but suffice it to say that this is a feel-good Christmas story with great characters, a fun plot and a happy ending. I was able to get this audiobook from the library so did a read/listen. The audiobook was well done with Elise Arsenault narrating. A nice performance that I enjoyed with good expression and intonation.
Published September 24th 2019 by Kensington Publishing
4 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
This is one of those happily ever after, new beginnings Christmas romances, that would make a perfect Hallmark movie. Joy Preston rushes home to North Carolina when her beloved Nana has a heart attack. Unfortunately she doesn’t make it, so Joy remains to help her mother at the B&B for a time. What she doesn’t expect is that her Nana has left her the B&B in her will, with the proviso that if she doesn’t stay for six months, it reverts to the state. Joy is not sure why she did this as she is the CEO of a successful nail polish company based in Colorado. She agrees to stay so that her mother will be able to keep the B&B in the family. Spending time in the town where she grew up brings back pleasant memories that begin to sway her future plans. Throw in a handsome, young lawyer and Joy is on her way to an unexpected happily ever after.
I really enjoyed this story, not only for the romance and family relationships, but how a company can help others. The issue of domestic abuse is a central part of this story, with a local shelter opening Joy’s eyes to what others go through. She not only helps the local shelter, but her company steps up to organize others to help shelters around the country. While this is going on, we see how her mother and staff are running the B&B while entering the Parade of Homes of which they have won for several years. There are other small town Christmas traditions that play out to make this a wonderful Christmas story. The characters are well developed with wonderful values and traits that make them people I would love to know. I definitely recommend this one.
The Christmas Remedy by Cindy Woodsmall & Erin Woodsmall, Narrated by Christina Moore
Published October 23rd 2018 by Waterbrook Press, Recorded Books
4 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I listened to this Amish story as part of my Christmas Readathon. It didn’t have a lot of Christmas in the story except for the last couple of chapters and the time of year the story was set. This short and sweet story was a bit different from many Amish romances, but with a theme that I am seeing more often. Holly, is unique among Amish woman with dreams of working to assist others in her community. She wants to serve them through the pharmaceutical world as well as getting a nursing degree to help them understand the value of medication. She understands that she can not marry as a married Amish woman does not work outside the home. Pharmacy student Brandon also faces his own internal struggles regarding his future. His father has suffered a stroke and needs Brandon to come home and help him. Brandon returns home to find that his father is in danger of losing the pharmacy, but is reluctant to change anything to modernize.
This was a nice story about looking at what is really important in life, family relationships, and love. Both these characters find someone that they care about and make changes in their lives to follow those dreams, while still being true to themselves. There is also a bit of a mystery that Holly and her friend Joshua work hard to solve growing closer together as they do so. I enjoyed the peek into health care from a pharmacist POV and all they go through to help their customers. This was an enjoyable, intriguing read with characters I liked that I do recommend.