Friday, September 26, 2014

Mr. Miracle: A Christmas Novel

Author:  Debbie Macomber
Genre:  Christmas/Angels

Five Stars
Harry Mills is a guardian angel on a mission: help twenty-four-year-old Addie Folsom get her life back on track—and, if the right moment strikes, help her find love. Posing as a teacher at a local college in Tacoma, Washington, Harry is up to the task, but not even he can predict the surprises that lay in store.

After trying to make it on her own, Addie has returned home to Tacoma for the holidays, but this time she plans to stay for good, enrolling in the local community college to earn her degree. What she doesn’t plan to do is run into Erich Simmons.

Addie and her next-door neighbor, Erich, are like night and day. Growing up, he was popular and outgoing while she was rebellious and headstrong, and he never missed an opportunity to tease her. Now she intends to avoid him entirely, yet when they’re suddenly forced to spend Christmas together, Addie braces for trouble.

Perhaps it’s the spirit of the season or the magic of mistletoe, but Addie and Erich soon find they have more in common than they thought—and that two people who seem so wrong for each other may actually be just right. With a little prompting from a certain angelic teacher, the two are in for a holiday miracle they’ll never forget.
Addie Folsom has returned from Montana with her tail between her legs.  She is home for the first Christmas since her father's death, and home for good.  For the past six years she has been trying to make a living on her own, but has been unable to do so.  She has returned home to finish high school (she is lacking one credit) and then go to college in order to become a doctor, as her father was.
Believing it will be just her and her mother for Christmas, she decides to decorate the trees outside her house the way her father always did.  That's when her mother decides to drop a bombshell...since  her mother and their next door neighbor Julia are both widows, they have booked a Christmas cruise and Addie will be alone for the holidays.  After discussing it, Addie decides her mother should go and she will be fine.
While decorating the trees, her neighbor's son Erich Simmons shows up to help, which she doesn't want.  You see, Erich is the bane of her existence.  All through school he was her brother's best friend, and she idolized him.  However, the feelings weren't mutual.  While she was following him around, trying to get him to notice her, he was doing the exact opposite: trying to get her to leave him alone.  Still humiliated by his past actions, she doesn't want anything to do with him.
But now there's a problem:  the next day, Addie finds out Erich was in a car accident and broke both his wrists.  He is in casts up to his elbows and virtually helpless, and will need constant care, Julia can't afford a full-time nurse.  Which means her mother will have to cancel her trip, and won't be able to afford another one.
Enter Harry Mills, her guardian angel/literature teacher at the college.  Harry is here to help Addie find her way, and he must find his also.  You see, this is Harry's first earthly assignment, and his new body and emotions are giving him trouble.  Luckily, he has help in his supervisor, Celeste, but she is allowing him to also find his own way, while watching the proceedings.
So Harry, in order to help Addie, must convince her to help Erich.  In doing so, Addie and Erich must face their past, their present, and what they both want out of life.
I found this book delightful.  It is the type of book that gives you a warm fuzzy feeling when you finally finish it.  I believe it is a lovely addition to Ms. Macomber's Christmas tales, and I think anyone who reads it will enjoy it.  Watching Addie and Erich navigate their feelings for each other (and I don't think it's a spoiler since anyone who is familiar with her work knows that this is what the book is about) is nice to watch; and the secondary characters of Addie's co-students in her class bring a little more heart to the story.  Highly recommended.

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