by Melissa Ann Goodwin
When 12-year-old Jamie Reynolds comes to his grandparents' Vermont home for Christmas, he just wants things to go back to the way they were before his dad disappeared. Time and again he is drawn to Grandma's miniature Christmas village, where he imagines that life is perfect. Late one night, the village comes to life before his eyes, and his fantasy of escaping into it becomes very real indeed.
Jamie discovers that the village is called Canterbury, where the year is 1932. He becomes fast friends with Kelly and Christopher Pennysworth, and is taken in by Ida, who runs the local boarding house. But he also makes a dangerous enemy of the mysterious and menacing Jim Gordon, whose return to town is nothing but trouble.
As Jamie desperately races against time to find his way back home, he is suddenly faced with a terrifying choice: to go ahead with his plan to leave or to stay and help his friends at the risk of never going home again.
The Christmas Village is a holiday adventure the whole family will love, filled with suspense, secrets and surprises to the very last page.
A few reviews of The Christmas Village from Kids and Grown-up Kids:
~The Christmas Village is so exciting. It felt so real as I was listening to the story. I have read many other books but not one like your amazing book. From Mara
~I loved The Christmas Village and especially the ending. When my teacher stopped reading, I couldn't wait to find out what would happen next. I can't wait to read it again on my own. From Andrew
~It is an honor to write to you. I love your book The Christmas Village. And the way you ended it was phenomenal. From Munai
~I loved The Christmas Village! It was so interesting and exciting that I wouldn't stop reading it until I finished the whole book! ... Everyone should read it because it is packed with action and like I said is so exciting. I think you had an amazing choice of your describing words. Sincerely, Ava
From Grown-up kids:
"I highly recommend this delightful story that isn’t just for Christmas, but for anytime of the year – and for anyone who is young, or young at heart." Ann Best, author of the bestselling memoir,In the Mirror.
"The author came to visit our school and spoke with our 4th and 5th grade classes … As she was discussing how and why she wrote certain passages (from The Christmas Village), we all became hooked on the story. There was a mad dash to our school library to borrow the one copy of this book. Not only is the story great, but the writing is vivid. The author's writing style has you caught up in the story, you feel like you are there. There is plenty of suspense that makes it hard to put the book down. The ending is wonderful.”
“The characters are beautifully developed and feel like friends. When you reach that last page it is ever so hard to say goodbye.”
About Melissa Ann Goodwin
Originally from Andover, Massachusetts, Goodwin now lives in Florida with her husband, artist J.R. Secor. She has been writing professionally for more than 15 years and has had more than 40 stories, poems and articles published in the FunforKidz family of magazines. Her feature articles have appeared in Caring Today, Guidepost’s Angels on Earth and The Caregiver’s Home Companion. Her poetry won a top prize in the 2010 Writer’s Digest Annual Poetry Competition. The Christmas Village, a middle grade fantasy-adventure, is Goodwin’s first novel. She is completing work on the sequel, Return to Canterbury, which she hopes to release in November of this year.
Ms. Goodwin actively promotes literacy through school and library visits with children in grades three through six. During fun interactive sessions, she uses passages from her book to explore how writers make stories come to life through the use of active and descriptive language. Last year she traveled throughout New England and Canada, doing readings and signings, talking with book clubs and writer’s groups and visiting schools and libraries. She can be contacted by at firstname.lastname@example.org regarding personal appearances.
The Christmas Village is available in paperback and ebook for Kindle from Amazon.com; in paperback and ebook for Nook from BarnesandNoble.com, and in all digital formats from Smashwords.
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