Stuffed to the seams with wholesome holiday cheer, Manchester Christmas is an adorable Christian romance set in a snow globe-worthy small town in Vermont.
At the beginning of the fall, Chase, a cute-as-a-button writer, drives her convertible from Seattle to Manchester with her adorable dog, hoping to fulfill her deep yearning for pastoral life. Within moments of arriving, Chase is embroiled in a love triangle with two of the town’s most eligible bachelors: Owen, a widowed real estate agent and single parent to a boy on the autistic spectrum, and Gavin, a hunky farmer with a master’s degree. Their tight-knit community doesn’t believe in privacy, and soon, Chase’s love life is the talk of the town. Then she rents a rehabbed church and discovers that its rare Tiffany glass windows have the ability to communicate with her. As she grows to trust the windows’ messages, Chase enters a new relationship with a God, who has her best interests at heart.
For all of its crisp maple leaves, perfect waffles, aww-shucks dialogue, and shabby chic descriptions, Manchester Christmas also takes on serious questions about what “home” means to Chase. She’s depicted as independent, sassy, and in search of a sense of belonging; one of the novel’s most satisfying turns is in her budding bond to the god she sees in the church windows.
This is an apple-pie-sweet Christian romance, complete with tender kisses, fireflies, and just the right amount of conflict, as well as a distinctive cast of supporting characters who nudge Chase along as she figures out what she wants, and who she’s living for. Manchester Christmas is a seasonal fantasy that doesn’t worry too much about reality as its characters find new ways and reasons to rub noses in the snow.
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