today’s book: A Christmas Courtship
Winter is drawing ever closer (hooray!!), and it’s time for our annual blog series spotlighting (over 60 this year) new and recently-released Christmas reads! This is our largest year yet, with the most authors & books, and we’re back with an all-new look, too.
Christmas is still 32 days away, though, so… snuggle in, grab your fave hot beverage and comfiest blanket, turn on some Christmas tunes and start your bookish Christmas list! Oh… and did I mention there are GIVEAWAYS with EACH POST in this series??!! (Because authors are awesome!)
Today’s first featured book is the newest installment in the Berlin Bookmobile series, and author Shelley Shepard Gray chats about the theme of gift giving!
A CHRISTMAS COURTSHIP by Shelley Shepard Gray
SERIES: Berlin Bookmobile #3
GENRE: Inspirational Contemporary Romance / Amish Fiction
PUBLISHER: Gallery Books
RELEASE DATE: October 19, 2021
In this endearing Christmas tale, a bookmobile librarian knows just the novel to help an Amish bachelor woo his next-door neighbor in the latest installment of the “charming” (Carla Laureano, RITA Award–winning author of Five Days in Skye) Berlin Bookmobile series.
A solitary sort, forty-two-year-old Atle Petersheim spends his time hard at work in his wood shop. But as the days get long, he realizes just how lonely he’s become. When his longtime crush, Sadie Mast, a widow and mother of three, asks him to help her build a room in their barn for her son Cale, Atle can’t say no. Eager to pursue Sadie at last, he turns to bookmobile librarian Sarah Anne Miller for courting advice. More than happy to help, Sarah Anne decides the best way to learn about love is through books—romance novels to be precise.
Between completing holiday orders for her flourishing food business, helping Cale navigate a dramatic new relationship with his boss’s daughter, and coming to terms with the trauma her late husband had inflicted upon her and her children—not to mention Atle showing up at her door with flowers—Sadie is in over her head. Though Atle’s efforts are initially clumsy and his declarations a bit awkward, Sadie can’t help but be charmed by him. He’s patient and kind…and at times even seems to know far more about romance than he’s let on.
Another delightful romance about the “transformative powers of love, hope, and faith” (Publishers Weekly), A Christmas Courtship is the perfect holiday read.
by Shelley Shepard Gray, author of A Christmas Courtship
What kind of Christmas gift-giver are you? Do you plan ahead and start shopping in September or October? Do you wait until the last minute? Do you prefer people give you ideas or would you rather find something interesting on your own? Or, are you the crafty sort, and enjoy making gifts?
These things were on my mind while I was writing A Christmas Courtship. I suppose that was only natural, since the novel begins with the heroine asking her neighbor to build her teenage son a room in her barn. That room is meant to be her boy’s Christmas present-and she’s sure he’s going to be so grateful and excited about getting a little bit of space. Unfortunately for her, the son isn’t too enthused about the gift-though the building of the room turns out to be a blessing.
The theme of gifts and sharing gifts is a theme throughout the whole novel. The characters try to honor the gifts that God has blessed them with-and ponder what to give the special people in their lives, too.
I have to admit that I’m usually a kind of last minute- buy whatever someone asks for – type of gift giver. However, over the years, I’ve given gifts that I’ve been particularly proud about. I used to needlepoint my agent Mary Sue something every year. It took me months and I could hardly wait until Christmas Day to see what she thought! Once I planned a whole trip for Tom and made a little travel brochure for him to open on Christmas morning. That was a hit. <g>
I’ve also given things to my children that one of my parents gave to me years ago. Those gifts are especially meaningful.
Of course, my favorite gifts are some of the little projects my kids made in day care and at school. I have a Christmas tree made out of my son’s handprints that still makes my heart melt.
While Christmas is about so much more than gifts to give and receive, I can’t deny that the love that goes into a special gift is something to treasure. It’s a sign that the person matters. That they are special. That they are loved. The characters in my book realize that too-it just takes them a bit to figure that out!
If you’d like to win a copy of A Christmas Courtship as well as an ornament, please share a favorite gift that you’ve either given or received. I’d love to read about them!
Wishing everyone an especially joyous Christmas this year!
Shelley Shepard Gray
Shelley Shepard Gray is the Holt Medallion Award-winning, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over eighty novels. Her novels have been translated into multiple languages and highlighted in the Philadelphia Enquirer, The Washington Post, Time Magazine, NPR and USA Today. An active member of her church and the mother of two young adults, Shelley lives with her husband in Ohio and writes full time. Please visit her online at ShelleyShepardGray.com.
Shelley Shepard Gray is offering a print copy of A Christmas Courtship and a Christmas ornament to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
What about you? What makes you want to read A Christmas Courtship by Shelley Shepard Gray? What is a favorite gift that you’ve either given or received?