Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Holiday Reading: Christmas!

The holiday fiction reading display is out at the library, thus it is time to start reading Christmas books. Well, I’m not much of a cozy reads kind of person, but I decided that for my seasonal reading project I would read one of those heartwarming cheesy holiday books. So who should I choose other than the unofficial storyteller of Christmas, Debbie Macomber! And within that frame of reference, I went for Mrs. Miracle.

Seth and Reba are two people dealing with tragedy and hurt in their lives. These are old festering wounds that neither is able to move on from. Seth is the father of two young twin boys, whose mother died four years ago. The twins moved back in with Seth after staying with their grandparents following their mother’s death. Seth is trying to learn how to be a single father, but is having lots of issues. It doesn’t help that every housekeeper quits on him and the agency is all out of options for new ones to send. Reba owns her own travel agency, but her hurt comes from the betrayal of her sister and loss of her former fiancé, which happened four years ago. These two broken people might have remained hurt if not for the saving grace of one spirited and oddly knowing housekeeper.

Mrs. Miracle arrives on Seth’s doorstep to be his new housekeeper, and automatically the children take to her. Things start looking up from there and a relationship that neither Seth nor Reba saw coming suddenly starts spinning itself into existence.

My reaction to this book upon first opening it was “Wow, this is a Hallmark movie in book form.” As a matter of fact, they did make it into a Hallmark movie, so I was right. The characters’ flaws are obvious, but they are loving, good people all the same. The story is transparent and everything falls into place a little too perfectly. All in all, it’s not believable, but who wants believable this time of year? These books aren’t made to be believable; they’re made so that you feel warm and snuggly inside. Sometimes you just need something that goes right in this chaotic world, and books like Mrs. Miracle provide an outlet for a happy ending. Although there may be tragic circumstances that happened in the past and drama during the book, these books aren’t violent or shocking. Mrs. Miracle also has Christian themes running throughout it. There are a couple of side stories that are attached to the main story within Mrs. Miracle and I thought they were fun to read and provided some diversity to the book.

I must say I didn’t care for the characters because they were unrealistic. Sure they had problems and issues, but they said the right things all the time and provided the perfect amount of drama while making up for their shortcomings in the end. Another thing I found unbelievable was that all the other housekeepers thought the twins were so out of control, and this one woman, within an hour, calms them down. Honestly they didn’t seem any more rowdy than other seven-year-old boys, so why are housekeepers who are used to working with children having such a problem?

All in all, Mrs. Miracle is good for what it is, a potato chip read. It’s doesn’t have any nutritional content, but it can be so yummy. This is a nice little story about forgiveness and family, all surrounded by the Christmas holiday. If you want something with Christian undertones about family and Christmas this is a quick and easy choice.

~Kristin M.

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