|Catering to Christmas readers
|Written by Christine D. Johnson
|Monday, 07 July 2014 02:55 PM America/New_York
Variety abounds for kids and adults in this year’s holiday offerings
Retailers are ever aware that Christmas is right around the corner. Many a shopper will be looking for the latest seasonal story, kid’s book or cookbook—and publishers stand at the ready.
“We are publishing books for people who may be overwhelmed by the busyness of the season,” said Pamela Clements, associate publisher for Christian Living and Abingdon Fiction at Abingdon Press.
Clements also pointed to a new novella called Nora Bonesteel’s Christmas Past.
“I really believe that people love to immerse themselves in the Christmas season, and there is nothing better than a good story,” she said.
Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, publishes one or two new Christmas titles each fall that are “giftable,” as many holiday titles are.
“We are very aware that most of the print copy sales are for gifts,” said Lonnie Hull DuPont, executive editor at Revell. “Obviously many ways of buying books are changing with the world of e-books, but we think there is still a reader desire for a physical, handsome book to give away for Christmas gifts.”
Nola Haney, sales manager for Barbour Publishing, also understands the draw of beautiful books for the season, noting the popularity of the company’s historical Christmas collection.
“The beautiful packaging lends itself well as a gift, and the unbeatable low price allows for multiple purchases for book lovers in every family,” Haney said. “Many of our retail customers off-price it even more for great Thanksgiving weekend sales.”
Abingdon also took into consideration readers for whom Christmas is difficult.
“For some people, it is not all joy and laughter, and having the right encouragement and showing that the original Christmas was anything but tinsel and music can be a wonderful gift for a reader who might be struggling,” Clements said.
The following titles are some of this year’s Christmas offerings:
The Messiah: The Texts Behind Handel’s Masterpiece from the “LifeGuide Bible Studies” series explores some of the key passages in the Old Testament about the Messiah and their completion in the life and work of Jesus. These passages led George Frederic Handel to write his oratorio, parts of which are sung during the Christmas season. However, what many fail to realize is that the entire text of Handel’s “Messiah” is drawn from Scripture. This inductive study guide leads the reader through the Scriptures used in Handel’s work that highlight Jesus’ identity and work.
Orders: Call 630-734-4711 or fax 630-734-4200.
Juliet David; illustrated by Jo Parry
This first domino game and story booklet for young children will help them learn the story of Jesus’ birth. The large, colorful dominoes feature characters, numbers and animals.
GOD BLESS OUR CHRISTMAS
Hannah C. Hall, Steve Whitlow
God Bless Our Christmas is the third title in the best-selling “God Bless Book” series. Its rhyming story will help children ages 1 to 4 focus on all the blessings of Christmas with family, including decorating cookies and trees, singing carols, giving gifts and celebrating Jesus. Animals such as penguins and polar bears each enjoy a different Christmas blessing or tradition. In the end, they gather around the tree, thankful for Jesus, the brightest part of the season.
WHO’S COMING TO STAY?
Kregel Children’s Books (Kregel Publications)
This small board book is also a Christmas ornament. Who’s Coming to Stay? tells the story of the animals in the stable as they make room for the baby Jesus. The book features layered die-cuts and sparkly foil.
WANDA E. BRUNSTETTER’S AMISH FRIENDS CHRISTMAS COOKBOOK
Wanda E. Brunstetter
From Barbour’s New York Times best-selling author of Amish fiction comes Wanda E. Brunstetter’s Amish Friends Christmas Cookbook. This new cookbook with a lay-flat binding includes homestyle recipes and insights into Amish life during Christmastime.
Orders: Call 800-852-8010 or fax 800-220-5948.
12 STORIES OF CHRISTMAS
Robert J. Morgan
CHRISTMAS AT ROSE HILL FARM
Suzanne Woods Fisher
Bess Riehl is preparing Rose Hill Farm for her Christmas wedding, but her groom isn’t who she thought he would be. Billy Lapp is far away from his Amish roots working as a rose rustler and wants nothing to do with Bess, so she said yes to Amos Lapp. But as the wedding day draws near, her emotions tangle. In the end, Bess, Billy and Amos see that Christmas truly is a season of miracles.
In Clara’s Wish: An Amish Christmas Romance, Lizzy Ryder is looking for a hardworking, God-fearing gentleman—everything that Zachariah Schrock is not! But when Zach’s sister and Lizzy’s best friend, Clara, takes ill, they come together to give her a Christmas she’ll never forget. As Clara’s condition worsens, will they learn to lean on God and each other? Clara’s Wish also includes bonus Amish recipes.
Susan May Warren
An empty nest has Ingrid Christiansen dreading the holidays, but her husband, John, couldn’t be more excited about this new season of life. As a blanket of snow transforms the north woods into a winter wonderland, a deep chill settles over their marriage. Their only hope of keeping their love evergreen depends on embracing a new chapter of their lives.
NORA BONESTEEL’S CHRISTMAS PAST
Nora Bonesteel returns in this novella from New York Times best-selling author McCrumb. When someone buys the old Honeycutt house, Nora is glad to see some life brought back to the old mansion, even if it is by summer people. But when they decide to stay through Christmas, they find more than old memories in the walls. In a story of spirits, memories and angels unaware, McCrumb’s characters know there is more to this world than the eye can see, especially at Christmastime.
THE CHRISTMAS CAT
After years abroad, Garrison Brown heads home to Vancouver to build a new life. When his grandmother passes away a few weeks before Christmas, Garrison goes to her house to sort out her belongings, including six cats who need new homes. While he hopes to dispense with the task quickly, his grandmother’s instructions don’t allow for speed. Garrison’s job is to match the cats with the right owners without disclosing a monetary gift. And along the way, he may just meet someone who can make him want to stay.
THE WESTWARD CHRISTMAS BRIDES COLLECTION
Wanda E. Brunstetter et al.
Attempting a westward journey during the winters of the 1800s is either brave or foolhardy. But the promise of a new life is strong for those heading to new settlements, as well as those using any excuse to run from their pasts, gain adventure and find a place to call home. As Christmas approaches, will the couples find new hope in romance, or will they have to turn back?
Orders: Call 800-852-8010 or fax 800-220-5948.
WHERE TREETOPS GLISTEN
Set in 1940s’ Lafayette, Indiana, Where Treetops Glisten tells the tale of Abigail, Pete and Merry Turner, each of whom faces the uncertainty of life during wartime, but relies on faith and God’s leading to find lasting love and enduring hope. Where Treetops Glisten is a collection of three stories of courage and romance set during World War II.
NOT A SILENT NIGHT
In Not a Silent Night by pastor and best-selling author Hamilton, readers will witness the life of Christ through the eyes of His mother, Mary, starting at the end of His earthly life and working back to His birth.