“Seven Books to Curl Up With This Christmas” Day 1: Winter Stroll by Elin Hilderbrand

The week before Christmas is the perfect time to curl up with a holiday story. Whether it be a long drive cross country, a few stolen moments between festivities, or a quiet afternoon by the tree, a Christmas novel is the best way to warm the heart and get you into the spirit of the season. Over the next seven days I will be sharing the books I am indulging in this season, and hopefully you find one that speaks to you too.

“Some women, Ava realizes, would crumple in a pile and feel sorry for themselves, but not Jennifer. Jennifer puts on her gnome sweater.”

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Winter Stroll by Elin Hilderbrand is the story of the Quinn family: a dynamic bunch with a hearty helping of drama. Part of the Winter Street series, Winter Stroll can easily be read as a standalone novel. Told from the perspective of each family member, the story follows their intertwined threads. It has been a hard year for the Quinns: the oldest son Patrick is in prison, the youngest son Bart is missing in Afghanistan, and Kelley’s estranged wife Mitzi is back in town after running off a year ago with the inn’s Santa Claus. The family is drawn together once more for the baptism of baby Genevieve, but can they stay together?

This was my first Elin Hilderbrand holiday novel and guys, I was totally unprepared. I had been seeing it all over Bookstagram, so when I saw it at our local supermarket I immediately put it into the cart. The story is one to get lost in and will appeal to fans of Debbie Macomber. But unlike most feel good romances, this Christmas story isn’t a sickly sweet sugarplum. There are edges, and the bow isn’t tied perfectly straight. The characters are real and felt to me like an extension of my own family. The drama draws you in and keeps you glued until the end. In all I give the book 3.5 stars out of 5 for predictability, but does that ever take away from a good gossip with your girlfriends? Will definitely be picking up the follow up Winter Storms next time I go into town.

Any Christmas reading recommendations? Books you’re loving this holiday season?

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