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09 December 2016

The Xmas Factor by Annie Sanders (Book Beginnings & Friday 56)


Friday 56 (share from the 56th page or 56% mark) is hosted at Freda's Voice (today page 156) 
& Book Beginnings (share the first few sentences) is at Rose City Reader.
Meet two women with two totally different approaches to the festive season. 
Beth: it's only September, and already she has performance anxiety. Not surprising when she has agreed to lay on the annual Christmas Eve village bash - the piece de resistance of her husband's former wife - not to mention having to host Christmas for his difficult offspring. New to this frenzied build-up to the festivities, Beth begins to lose sight of what it all means. To her the Christmas lights are looking more like the headlamps of an oncoming train. 
Carol: glamorous magazine editor, who put her aspirational Christmas issue to bed sometime in July and is so involved in finding a scoop to save her ailing magazine that she fails to notice the impending festive rush. Panicked and wracked with guilt, she is determined to make it a picture-perfect time for her little boy and, opting for convenience, books a lovely-sounding cottage in a quaint village. 
Even the best-laid plans have a habit of unravelling - and no plan at all is a recipe for disaster. So when these two Christmases collide, it looks like it's going to be anything but goodwill towards men...

The description for this book doesn't even begin to do it justice. There's so very much more than just Beth and Carol. We also get to know Holly (Beth's stepdaughter who happens to work for Carol), Tim (Carol's seven-year-old son who wants more time with mom and for her to find a boyfriend), and Nick (the musician who is quite enthralled with Carol). The point of view jumps around between them and they all end up crossing paths and stories. I especially love the different takes on things between Carol and Tim. Kids are so much fun to get into the brains of and the writing duo that makes up "Annie Sanders" nailed it. In fact, they've nailed every character beautifully -- even the sometimes bratty Holly, Beth's 'can't-be-bothered' committee "helpers," tortured pop star Anya, and uppity magazine executive Ian. This is definitely one I'll keep on my shelf and pull out to re-read for future Christmases!

15 comments:

  1. Such a great showcase. This sounds perfect for my holiday reading!

    My Friday 56 from Grudging

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  2. I especially love the beginning, having struggled with finding the perfect words. Enjoy! Thanks for sharing, and for visiting my blog.

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  3. Sounds like a great holiday read. Here is my 56 and BB: http://shoshireads.weebly.com/home/book-beginnings-friday-566221150

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  4. This sounds like the perfect December read. Thanks for mentioning it. :-)

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  5. Sounds like this is much more than the usual Christmas story! I already like Holly (I can relate to her frustration!), and Beth sounds like a character I'd enjoy too. Thanks for the recommendation and for leaving a comment on my blog.
    Sandy @ WRITING WITH A TEXAS TWANG

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  6. Hi Karen,

    Thanks for stopping by Fiction Books today. I enjoy meeting new people, so your visits and comments will always be very welcome and much appreciated :)

    I don't tend to 'seasonally read' and perhaps this story might be just a little to cozy for my liking, however I loved the excerpts you shared.

    I know exactly what it's like to have words in my head which are clear and concise, but by the time they are down in writing they have somehow become jumbled and too elaborate to make any sense whatsoever!

    Also, as I trained as a florist many moons ago, I can so sympathise with the terrible sound florists wires make when in contact with dry oasis, in fact I used to also hate the feel of the stuff!

    Thanks for sharing, enjoy the book and have a great weekend :)

    Yvonne

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    1. There's enough angst amongst the festivities that it isn't sickeningly cozy. Even at Christmastime I prefer "real" over glossed over emotions and this definitely has them :)
      One would think after all this time that someone would make florist wire that didn't drive people crazy. Many years ago I had a friend whose parents ran a flower shop and I remember the complaints then, too!

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  7. Who is the target audience of this book? Adults with children or a book that is read to children? Sounds funny.

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    1. It's definitely a book for adults. It's a holiday chick lit.

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  8. The beginning is intriguing. Christmases colliding? Sounds like a perfect book to retreat to during the busy holiday rush.

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  9. Sounds like a fun and funny read. Great review!

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  10. Sounds like a fun and festive read! Happy weekend!

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  11. I liked both teasers! This sounds like a book I would really enjoy reading. Thanks for sharing this one. Also thanks for visiting my book beginning and Friday 56 yesterday.

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  12. Those snippets have caught my interest! Thanks for sharing. :)
    Lauren @ Always Me

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