Melody Carlson's The Christmas Shoppe offers a charming visit to the small town of Parrish Springs. Matilda Honeycutt doesn't quite fit in with the other residents of Parrish Springs, and some are intent on running her and her unorthodox business out of town. Even those who initially give her the benefit of the doubt begin to question whether her store full of second-hand, thrift-shop merchandise belongs on the main street of town. What happens, though, when the doubters actually visit The Christmas Shoppe is pretty amazing and unexplainable. Something about the store begins to win over even Matilda's strongest opponents.
This story contains elements of fantasy that qualify as Christmas "magic." It is a fun read that reminds you of things that matter -- memories that money can't buy. My one criticism is that the story sometimes moves too slowly and seems to get bogged down in detail. All in all, though, I would recommend it to be worth the few hours needed to read the story.
Available September 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.