Sunday, December 24, 2017

Holiday Books Make Fun Reads

In the age of television and movies, many have a favorite holiday film, often a Christmas film. Some of us are 'mature' enough that the film is It's a Wonderful Life (Donna Reed and Jimmy Stewart), a black and white icon. You could add Miracle on 34th Street, Charlie Brown Christmas, Elf, and Home Alone. And dozens more.

Many children were read 'Twas the Night Before Christmas (Clement C. Moore). You could add Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mommy (Selino Alko). Two older books that jump into my head are A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens) and The Gift of the Magi (O.Henry). Both of these have an  element of discovery, if not mystery. When I looked for the author of Night Before Christmas (sorry, Mr. Moore, didn't know your name), I found a beautiful list of thirty popular Christmas stories.

In my cozy mystery genre, holiday books abound, especially for Halloween and Christmas. Mary Higgins Clark has a mystery every Christmas, and Canadian Vicki Delaney writes the Year Round Christmas Mysteries. I'm very fond of Meg Muldoon's Christmas River series. Not all of them are set in December, but the spirit is there. If you want a book for almost any holiday, follow Kathi Daley.

I've had Christmas, Hanukkah, Thanksgiving, and Fourth of July in my books. Other than Holidays in Ocean Alley, the festivities are not usually the center of action. I did a Christmas short story this year, on the spur of the moment. (Mildred Mistletoe Fixes Christmas) I had so much fun with it that I'll do more.

To write a really good holiday book an author starts months before the date. I'll have to ask author friend Karen Nortman if she wore a Santa hat as she wrote A Campy Christmas (part of the Frannie Shoemaker campground mystery series).

You can find holiday stories in any genre -- mysteries, literary fiction, romance, even science fiction. If you are tired of fighting traffic, pick up a good book and settle in for a treat.
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