New York Times best-selling author, Nancy Thayer, has included two holiday novels in this collection for her readers to enjoy. The first,
A Nantucket Christmas, is the love story of Nicole and Sebastian, with a dog thrown in. Thayer teases the reader by starting with the dog story, then leaving the reader to wonder just what she has in mind as we are introduced to Nicole and Sebastian.
Nicole is a widow who followed her best friend Jilly’s advice and came to Nantucket for Christmas. Nicole fell in love with the small town in all its holiday finery, with chiming church bells and fresh salt air. Nicole also fell in love with Sebastian, a lawyer who survived a divorce and decided it was time to enjoy life. Sebastian gave us his law firm and moved to Nantucket. He left behind a bossy ex-wife and an adult daughter, Kennedy, who is now married and the mother of Maddox, with a second baby on the way. Kennedy is struggling to find her own way through motherhood. She knows she cannot be the woman her mother was, with every curl in place and every speck of dust banished from the house. She wants to be her father’s little girl, but her father has now married this Nicole person, and Kennedy sees the attention of her father becoming divided. When all descend on Nicole for Christmas in the house that Kennedy grew up in, it threatens to ruin Nicole’s Christmas. Kennedy has made up her mind to do whatever it takes to break up Nicole and her father so that her father will go running back to her mother. Before the New Year arrives, new relationships will be forged and old hurts will be forgiven.
Thayer concludes by going back to the dog story so that her readers will end their time in Nantucket wishing for more.
The second novel in this collection is Island Christmas. (Both of these novels
were previously published as separate novels.) Thayer returns the reader to Nantucket and to friends Nicole and Jilly. This time, the story revolves around Jilly’s family and her two grown daughters. Lauren is just like her mother and likes all things girly. Lauren quickly married, settled down, and had her family. Felicia followed the adventurous life, leading tours of strangers up a mountainside, across the desert, taking groups of people white-water rafting. In the middle of it all, Felicia met Archie and fell in love. Archie also loves the adventurous life, so it is unexpected that Felicia would call her mother up and announce that she and Archie will be in Nantucket for Christmas
and to get married. As excited as Jilly is to be planning a Christmas wedding for Felicia, she is not pleased about Felicia’s choice
of groom. In the midst of planning the perfect Christmas, it will prove almost too much for Jilly to share in her daughter’s happiness with all of the family gathered under one room.
Author Thayer continues to give the reader characters they can care about, cheer for, and shed a tear for when things are going wrong. These two holiday stories will get the reader in the mood to remember that Christmas is about being near the ones you love.