Let’s all get in the mood for Christmas with this blog tour and giveaway for Silent Days, Holy Night by Phyllis Clark Nichols, hosted by JustRead Tours.
About the Book
Title: Silent Days, Holy Night
Author: Phyllis Clark Nichols
Publisher: Gilead Publishing
Release Date: October 30, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction/Christmas
The sounds of Christmases past echo through a silent house…
Everyone in town knows Emerald Crest, the green granite mansion atop the highest hill: the legendary, lavish Christmas festivities that used to light up the nights— and the silence that followed when the parties abruptly stopped many years ago. And everyone has heard whispers about the reclusive, mysterious master of the manor, Henry Lafferty the Second . . .
When eleven-year-old Julia Russell steps into the great house for the first time and meets Mr. Lafferty, the entire course of her life is altered. She meets a man who is nothing at all like the rumors she’s heard from neighbors and classmates. He’s kind and extraordinarily talented—he also happens to be deaf and uses a wheelchair. And when she overhears a secret about him, Julia decides it’s time for the town to bring Christmas back to Emerald Crest—an act that will change them all forever.
About the Author
Phyllis Clark Nichols’s character-driven Southern fiction explores profound human questions using the imagined residents of small town communities you just know you’ve visited before. With a strong faith and a love for nature, art, music, and ordinary people, she tells redemptive tales of loss and recovery, estrangement and connection, longing and fulfillment . . . often through surprisingly serendipitous events.
Phyllis grew up in the deep shade of magnolia trees in South Georgia. Born during a hurricane, she is no stranger to the winds of change: In addition to her life as a novelist, Phyllis is a seminary graduate, concert pianist, and co-founder of a national cable network with health- and disability-related programming. Regardless of the role she’s playing, Phyllis brings creativity and compelling storytelling.
She frequently appears at conventions, conferences, civic groups, and churches, performing half-hour musical monologues that express her faith, joy, and thoughts about life—all with the homespun humor and gentility of a true Southern woman.
Phyllis currently serves on several nonprofit boards. She lives in the Texas Hill Country with her portrait-artist husband.
I so very much enjoyed Silent Days, Holy Night by Phyllis Clark Nichols. The story is SO well-written, the plot is highly engaging, and the characters are just the absolute best. This is a story that will stick with me long after the final page has been read. If you are looking for an endearing and charming Christmas novel, then Silent Days, Holy Night is the book for you!
The main character of this novel is Julia. Julia is a ten-year old genius and is one of the best-written children I’ve ever read. I adore Julia’s character. As a teacher of many, many years, Julia’s character is the exact type of kid I love to teach — the highly intelligent, thoughtful, straight-A kiddo. I love these types of kids so much because they never want to stop learning. Julia teaches the reader many wonderful things throughout this story, but one concept really stuck with me. There is a moment where she discusses a science experiment she conducted on leaves. The experiment is cool and definitely worth learning about, but what I love so much about this moment is when Julia makes this point: “There’s always more to a leaf than we can see.” What a smart little girl! This thought applies to everything really, especially people.
I recently finished a Bible study that discussed the notion of divine appointments. The study explained that every day we interact in some way with many different kinds of people. Some people we see in our day are constants like spouses, children, coworkers, and friends. We fully know why God put those people into our lives. But thrown in the mix throughout our day are strangers. People we see walking past us. People who stop us for directions. People we accidentally bump into. People we pass by in the grocery store. The list goes on and on. The idea in the Bible study is that God purposely puts these people in our path. There are no mistakes with God. Perhaps these people are there for a divine appointment? The thing is, we humans view most everything at face value — we only see the outside of the leaf so to speak. We forget that like leaves people have more to them than what we initially see with our eyes. So, we view a stranger walking down the street as merely a person walking down the street. Maybe we notice something about his/her clothing, or the way the person has styled his/her hair, but do we ever think, “Did God put that person in my line of sight for a reason?” Perhaps God puts people in our path because there is more to the moment than meets the eye. Perhaps they need a quick prayer from a stranger to help them get through their day? In the novel, Julia meets a stranger and that meeting changes her life forever, but only because Julia is willing to look past the surface and see into who this person really is. This is definitely something I need to work on in myself. I need to be a little more like Julia!
There are moments in our life that change us and we will never be the same again. Some moments are positive forces of change, but some are negative. I will never forget the day I graduated from college, began my first “real” job, met my best friend, married my husband, gave birth to my daughter, etc. I also will never forget 9/11, the day my brother died, the day I lost a student in a horrific accident, or the day my best friend was diagnosed with a rare cancer. All of these moments have changed my life. Consider your life for a moment — I am betting you could immediately name off several positives and negatives that come to your mind. The most interesting idea from Silent Days, Holy Night is that moments are not made in a vacuum. Moments happen and affect others around us too. Moments make humans a community. Julia meets a lovely gentleman who changes her life forever, but his influence on her changes the lives of her entire community as well. This really made me stop and consider how I act in my day, and how those actions affect my community. Am I building my community up, or tearing it down? What a great question to reflect upon this holiday season.
Silent Days, Holy Night is a fantastic holiday read that I cannot recommend enough. There is so much goodness packed into only 240 pages. I leave Silent Days, Holy Night feeling hopeful and contented, and having learned quite a few timely messages. I give this book a hearty 5 STARS!
I received a review copy of this novel in eBook form from the author via Just Read Tours. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
TOUR GIVEAWAY(1) winner will receive (US only):
- a print copy of Silent Days, Holy Night by Phyllis Clark Nichols
- a print copy of Sleigh Bells Ring by various authors
Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight December 10, 2018 and last through 11:59pm December 17, 2018. US only. Winners will be notified within a week of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.
Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.
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