Joy Candellaro used to love Christmas more than any other time of the year. Now, as the holiday approaches, she finds herself at loose ends. Recently divorced and estranged from her sister, she can’t summon the old enthusiasm for celebrating. So without telling anyone, she buys a ticket and boards a plane bound for the rural Northwest. Yet Joy’s best-laid plans go terribly awry. The plane crashes deep in the darkness of a forest. Miraculously, Joy walks away from the wreckage as the plane explodes, obliterating all evidence of its passengers. Amid the towering trees, Joy makes a bold and desperate decision to leave her ordinary life behind and embark on an adventure . . . just for the holidays. Daniel O’Shea has returned to the small town of Rain Valley, following the death of his ex-wife. Now he is a single father facing his son’s first Christmas without a mother. Six-year-old Bobby isn’t making it easy - the boy has closed himself off from the world, surrounding himself with imaginary friends. When Joy and Bobby meet, they form an instant bond. Thrown together by fate, these wounded souls will be touched by the true spirit of Christmas and remember what it means to be a family. Then a dramatic turn of events shows Joy the price of starting over. On a magical Christmas Eve she will come face-to-face with a startling truth. Now she must decide: In a time of impossible dreams and unexpected chances, can she find the faith to reach for the love she has found . . . and the new life only she believes in?
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Kristin Hannah is the bestselling author of many acclaimed novels, including On Mystic Lake, Between Sisters, The Things We Do for Love, Comfort & Joy, and Magic Hour. She lives in the Pacific Northwest and on Kauai with her husband and son.From AudioFile:
Narrator Sandra Burr depicts Joy Faith Candellaro, high school librarian and recent divorcée, with edgy apprehension when she learns that her sister is pregnant by her ex-husband and that they plan to marry. Joy purchases a plane ticket to Hope, British Columbia, over Christmas to ease the pain. The play on names and words almost buries this little story with its Christmas message of forgiveness, but Burr salvages it through a compelling delivery. Her adept characterization of a grief-stricken 6-year-old is stellar, as is her portrayal of the child's father, who has a velvety Irish brogue. It's no surprise where their relationship is headed or how the story ends. G.D.W. © AudioFile 2006, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine
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