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Nancy's Notes - December 18, 2014

“Winter Street” by Elin Hilderbrand, “The Christmas Pony” by Melody Carlson, “The Girl Next Door” by Ruth Rendell.

Christmas is coming quickly. If you have your shopping done and are looking for a seasonal book, I have a couple of new titles for you.

The first,  “Winter Street”, is written by Elin Hilderbrand, who has become quite popular with our readers. In the author’s first Christmas novel a family gathers on Nantucket for a holiday filled with surprises. Kelley Quinn is the owner of Nantucket's Winter Street Inn and the father of four, all of them grown and living in varying states of disarray. Patrick, the eldest, is a hedge fund manager with a guilty conscience. Kevin, a bartender, is secretly sleeping with a French housekeeper named Isabelle. Ava, a school teacher, is finally dating the perfect guy but can't get him to commit. And Bart, the youngest and only child of Kelley's second marriage to Mitzi, has recently shocked everyone by joining the Marines. As Christmas approaches, Kelley is looking forward to getting the family together for some quality time at the inn. But when he walks in on Mitzi kissing Santa Claus (or the guy who's playing Santa at the inn's annual party), chaos descends. With the three older children each involved in their own dramas and Bart unreachable in Afghanistan, it might be up to Kelley's ex-wife to save Christmas at the Winter Street Inn.
        Melody Carlson is popular with our lovers of inspirational fiction. Her holiday story is entitled, “The Christmas Pony”. It is 1937, and Lucy Turnbull knows better than to wish for a pony this Christmas. Her mother has assured her in no uncertain terms that asking for a pony is the same as asking for the moon. Besides, the only extra mouths they need at their boarding house are the paying kind. Then an interesting pair of strangers comes to town, and Lucy's world changes forever.
        If you are “Christmassed-out” you may enjoy “The Girl Next Door” by Ruth Rendell. The discovery of bones in a tin box sends shockwaves across a group of long-time friends. Towards the end of World War II, a group of children discover an earthen tunnel in their neighborhood outside London. Throughout the summer of 1944 the space becomes their “secret garden,” where the friends play games and tell stories. Six decades later, beneath a house on the same land, construction workers uncover a tin box containing two skeletal hands, one male and one female. As the discovery makes national news, the friends come together once again, to recall their days in the tunnel for the detective investigating the case. Is the truth buried among these friends and their memories?
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