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Books for Lunch: Holiday Edition

Despite the busyness of the holiday season, members of Books for Lunch have reportedly kept up with their usual reading loads. Books for Lunch, the library’s no-obligation book club, meets the second Tuesday of every month from 12:30-2:00 p.m. in the Community Room.


In keeping with the Christmas spirit, and to add an element of festive structure to this week’s column, I’ve decided to focus solely on the holiday books that Books for Lunch attendees enjoyed this month. Here we go!


A Redbird Christmas by Fannie Flagg. A man who is given a few months to live, a little girl with a crippled leg, and a beloved red bird come together to form a crew of misfits in the small town of Lost River, Alabama. An enchanting, heartwarming story unfolds.

Winter of the Wolf Moon (Alex McKnight #2) by Steve Hamilton. Private investigator Alex McKnight is warming by the fire in his Upper Peninsula cabin when a young Ojibwa woman asks him for shelter from her abusive boyfriend. She takes refuge in one of McKnight’s cabins, but is gone the next morning. McKnight’s search for the missing woman is obscured by relentless snowstorms, a growing list of suspects, and an expansive forest along the rugged Canadian border.


Greenglass House by Kate Milford. It’s wintertime at the smugglers’ inn and Milo is looking forward to a quiet and uneventful Christmas break, but on night one of his holiday vacation, an uncanny number of guests arrive. Milo and his friend Meddy set out to solve a deepening web of mysteries about the Greenglass House, a ghost that makes an occasional appearance, and the handful of guests that have arrived.


The Matzah Ball by Jean Meltzer. A sweet and hilarious Jewish holiday romance (soon to be a major motion picture) featuring a heroine who, despite her chronic illness, is a best-selling romance author. This holiday season, Rachel’s creativity is running low, until she attends the Matzah Ball, a Jewish music celebration on the last night of Hanukkah, and reencounters her summer camp archenemy, Jacob Greenberg.


The Usual Santas: A Collection of Soho Crime Christmas Capers. This collection of eighteen holiday short stories, featuring bestselling and award-winning authors, is sure to add laughter, brightness, and heartfelt warmth to the holiday season.


Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan. Small town Ireland, 1985. During the weeks leading up to Christmas, Bill Furlong, a coal merchant, faces his busiest season until his work comes to an unexpected halt one morning. A discovery he makes on a delivery to a local convent forces him to confront both his past and the complicit silences of a town controlled by the church. 


He Sees You When You’re Sleeping by Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark. This acclaimed mother/daughter duo presents a heartwarming tale of redemption and love. Sterling Brooks, a notoriously self-absorbed man is given a second chance at life when he devises a master plan to help a little girl reunite with her family in time for Christmas.


Christmas at the Shelter Inn by RaeAnne Thayne. When Nat’s sister is put on pregnancy bed rest, Nat is forced to return home to help take care of her nieces and manage the inn during the hectic holiday season. It’s chaotic, it reignites painful memories of her past, and everything about this town reminds her of what she’s lost. Just when Nat thinks things can’t get any worse, she runs into her late brother’s best friend, Griffin Taylor. Together, they work to leave behind the losses of their pasts and begin something new.


I hope this list gives you plenty of ideas for what to read throughout the holiday break. Our next Books for Lunch gathering is on January 9 at 12:30 p.m. We’ll be discussing our top three reads from 2023. Bring a list of your favorites and come ready to share.


Happy reading!

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