Monday, October 29, 2012

A Wreath of Snow by Liz Curtis Higgs

A Wreath of Snow: A Victorian Christmas Novella by Liz Curtis Higgs. WaterBrook Press, 2012. 224p. (9781400072170)

It’s fun but kind of strange to read a story where a snowstorm plays an important part when you’re in a country that doesn’t really have snow and when you won’t see snow for over a year or two.

Goodreads Summary:
Christmas Eve 1894

 All Margaret Campbell wants for Christmas is a safe journey home. When her plans for a festive holiday with her family in Stirling crumble beneath the weight of her brother’s bitterness, the young schoolteacher wants nothing more than to return to the students she loves and the town house she calls home.

 Then an unexpected detour places her in the path of Gordon Shaw, a handsome newspaperman from Glasgow, who struggles under a burden of remorse and shame.

 When the secret of their shared history is revealed, will it leave them tangled in a knot of regret? Or might their past hold the threads that will bind their future together?

 As warm as a woolen scarf on a cold winter’s eve, A Wreath of Snow is a tender story of love and forgiveness, wrapped in a celebration of all things Scottish, all things Victorian, and, especially, all things Christmas.

My review:
I enjoyed this novella. It didn’t strike me as being too short or as if something were missing, although 224 pages seems like a novel and not a novella to me. (I read an ebook version and didn’t know the length until just now.) I did think it odd that Margaret and Gordon would fall in love so quickly – a day or two, especially considering their history.

This wasn’t really a romance though; it was a story of forgiveness. A story that reminded you not to withhold forgiveness and harbor bitterness and anger. A reminder that it’s best to seek forgiveness even if it digs up past pain because healing can’t truly happen until forgiveness is given and received.

Liz Curtis Higgs has done a lot of research on Scotland and many of her books are set there. I particularly loved Here Burns My Candle and Mine is the Night. Check out her website about Scotland to learn more about the author and her love for that country.

In this book she does a great job describing the setting, scenery, traditions and general feel of Christmas in the 1890s. An interesting fact from the author’s note at the end is that the word wreath is “also the Scots word for ‘a bank or drift of snow.’”

Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher through the Blogging for Books book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission.
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