Some people show children, some people show trees
Some people show cookies and snowmen and
Well, that went nowhere.
In any event, although I have the tree and the cookies and children et al., what I like showing are my Merry Christmas books, and here's what I got this year!
(all blurbs from Amazon)
A Parachute in a Lime Tree, by Annemarie Neary. Put on my want list last January, after reading Alex's thoughts. "April 1941. German bombers are in the air, about to attack Belfast. Oskar is a Luftwaffe conscript whose sweetheart, Elsa, was forced to flee Berlin for Ireland two years before. War-weary, he longs for escape. In remote Dunkerin, Kitty awakes to find a parachute trapped in one of the lime trees. When she discovers Oskar, injured and foraging for food in her kitchen, he becomes a rare and exciting secret. But Ireland during the "Emergency" is an uneasy place, and word of the parachute soon spreads. Meanwhile, Elsa is haunted by the plight of the parents she left behind. With the threat of the Nazi invasion, she feels far from secure. A chance encounter with Elsa, and Charlie, a young medical student, finds himself falling in love. Oskar, Kitty, Elsa, and Charlie's lives intertwine in a climate of war, exile, and ever-uncertain neutrality."
The Green Man, by Michael Bedard. My Waiting on Wednesday pick from Sept. 2011. "Teenaged O – never call her Ophelia – is about to spend the summer with her aunt Emily. Emily is a poet and the owner of an antiquarian book store, The Green Man. A proud, independent woman, Emily’s been made frail by a heart attack. O will be a help to her. Just how crucial that help will be unfolds as O first tackles Emily’s badly neglected home, then the chaotic shop. But soon she discovers that there are mysteries and long-buried dark forces that she cannot sweep away, though they threaten to awaken once more."
I Saw Three Ships, by Elizabeth Goudge. Jennifer remembered I love Goudge, and let me know this was republished--thanks! "Little Polly Flowerdew lives with her two maiden aunts, and she is absolutely sure that something special is going to happen this Christmas. She leaves her bedroom window open on Christmas Eve, just in case the three wise men decide to come visit. When she wakes up on Christmas morning, more than one miracle seems to have taken place."
Shadows, by Robin McKinley. "Maggie knows something’s off about Val, her mom’s new husband. Val is from Oldworld, where they still use magic, and he won’t have any tech in his office-shed behind the house. But—more importantly—what are the huge, horrible, jagged, jumpy shadows following him around? Magic is illegal in Newworld, which is all about science. The magic-carrying gene was disabled two generations ago, back when Maggie’s great-grandmother was a notable magician. But that was a long time ago.
Then Maggie meets Casimir, the most beautiful boy she has ever seen. He’s from Oldworld too—and he’s heard of Maggie’s stepfather, and has a guess about Val’s shadows. Maggie doesn’t want to know . . . until earth-shattering events force her to depend on Val and his shadows. And perhaps on her own heritage. In this dangerously unstable world, neither science nor magic has the necessary answers, but a truce between them is impossible. And although the two are supposed to be incompatible, Maggie’s discovering the world will need both to survive."
Still She Wished for Company, by Margaret Irwin. "The story moves between the 1920s and the 1770s, following two heroines: 20th century Jan Challard, a London girl, and 18th century Juliana Clare, the youngest daughter of an aristocratic Berkshire family. Jan is independent and spirited, but leads a humdrum life, working in an office, and walks out with a very suitable young man. Juliana, at 17 years of age, is getting the upbringing of a young lady in the enormous family mansion, Chidleigh, and her life is devoid of excitement and event.
The two heroines can see one another from time to time, momentarily, through some rent in the fabric of time, but never manage to meet and interact. Their lives converge as Juliana's world is turned upside down; her father dies and her notoriously wicked and mysterious brother, Lucian Clare, returns to take his position as head of the family.Lucian recognizes a supernatural power in Juliana, and uses this to reach out to Jan through the ages."
Clare, the Younger Sister, by Margaret Love (1968) No blurb for this one on Amazon, but it is a very appealing sounding story about an older sister trying to united scattered siblings. I love old books in which homes are made for siblings.
I hope all of you who are celebrating Christmas today are as happy, or (why not) even happier than me with your books (and families and cookies)!