- File Size: 880 KB
- Print Length: 52 pages
- Publisher: White Rose Publishing; 1 edition (December 1, 2017)
- Publication Date: December 1, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0774XRF7L
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#1,586,630 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
- #961 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Religious & Inspirational Fiction > Christian > Collections & Anthologies
- #1061 in Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Literature & Fiction > Collections & Anthologies
- #9758 in Kindle Store > Kindle Short Reads > 90 minutes (44-64 pages) > Literature & Fiction
The Christmas List (Christmas Holiday Extravaganza) Kindle Edition
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First, with a title that includes “Christmas” I would expect more than the author simply saying it will be Christmas soon. It was a bit disappointing that the story didn’t focus a bit more on the holiday. I would almost even forget the time of year with the focus on work in this one.
Now for the relationship, it’s one that you blink and it moves into the I love you territory which Ok the book is short so it needed to move quickly but I just didn’t see it myself. Max seemed rather flighty so I didn’t get the appeal to sitting around waiting for him to visit and being all goo goo over a man Mandy barely knew, this lost the strong business woman characterization that the author had tried to establish. Unfortunately when it was all said and done with this one it just wasn’t for me.
I received a copy from the publisher via NetGalley.
Mandy likes to make lists for everything and even has one for choosing a husband. Her goal is keep structure in her life and avoid suprises. This is how she believes she can be truly happy.
Max is spontaneous and loves sculpting. He’s never made a list in his life believing that God is ultimately in control anyway.
When Max finds he has more work than he can handle, he hires Mandy to take care of the paperwork for his business. Yet when love comes calling, she struggles to keep her own emotional accounts in balance, especially around Max.
Somehow they both need to learn from each other: that a little structure can be good, and that maybe God’s list is better than any either of them could come up with. A story about opposites attracting and how can use our strengths to help each other while smoothing out our rough edges, and all with a holiday twist.
Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
Dixie Jo Jarchow attempts to bring a Christmas timed story of trust to her readers that quite frankly falls flat as it has gaping holes in the plot and character development.
I’m going to apologize for bringing this book to anyone’s attention but let’s call this review a PSA to bring a warning: Run far away from this book!! I’m smart enough to know that the author was attempting to bring the concepts of trust and contentment that are found in God to the fore but I’m also smart enough to know that those concepts cannot be taught without examples from others and personal experience. Ms. Jarchow begins her story fairly well with her main character spending the evening with her best friend for her birthday. As they are both single, they are discussing what they look for in men. Mandy (main character and accountant) has a list for a specific type of man – even having a preference for brown hair and eyes, while Jennifer is looking for someone who would love God and her. They head out for an evening of painting and wine and at the studio they meet Max, who turns out to be just the opposite of the type of man Mandy is looking to date. But Max has other ideas, the most important of which is to convince Mandy that she is the one he has been waiting his whole life to love. All of this is great, a wonderful plot with several ways to go about playing out the romance. However, Ms. Jarchow proceeds to subject her readers to an unbelievable story that left me feeling like I wasted 45 minutes reading this book. Yes, that’s what I said, 45 minutes to finish this story – not a good thing in my opinion. First, she is trying to convey the idea that Mandy needs to let go of her controlling tendencies and rely more fully on God, so she brings Max into her life to convince her. Max asks Mandy to be his financial advisor and help him with his taxes given that he has never had to file taxes before. But reading a little closer into the story I found that Max apparently made more than the minimum required to pay taxes in years past but never has. This is not a good concept to share with readers as Christians are not supposed to skip paying their taxes, even if they are tithing faithfully. Jesus himself tells us to “render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s” and therefore honor God by obeying leadership. In fact, if you’re in debt, God would prefer that you go and pay that off before you bring any offerings to Him (above your tithe). So that really bothered me and now I will turn to Max himself. I think I might have run away screaming if this guy had shown any interest in me. Not only does he not show up when he says he will but further he makes no plans at all. He says that he “relies on God to provide for him what he needs to live by simply trusting Him” but I would argue that God does provide for us all very well with the gifts and talents with which He graces us. God does not expect us to just stand idly by and let Him run our lives, never entering into His work with Him. He gives us our gifts and talents so we may share them with others and point the glory back to Him. Through those gifts and talents He also provides the means for us to live – food, clothes, homes etc. I’m sure that Ms. Jarchow was trying to convey the idea that if we wish to grow closer to God then we need to let go of the control of our lives and let Him work through us. But as there was not real discussion of this, I was left a bit angry at the flippant way in which Max views God – as an indulgent father who will never allow His children to go without. Yes, when we are in the will of God, He cares for us well but that does not mean that His care does not also include fiery testing at times to stretch and grow us into the people He desires for us to be. I was also offended at the way in which Ms. Jarchow really knocked on Mandy for her lists she had made – like it was really bad to make lists for anything. She was probably intending to show that Mandy needed to trust God more and not rely on what she thought she needed out of life but it was not expressed very well at all. I’m a list person too and while I would say that I’m learning greater trust in God daily, I also feel that my lists are the way He has gifted me to keep in mind the goals He has given me. Lastly, there were so many pieces of this story that were missing and there wasn’t really any attempt to ensure that they were all found. From Max’s background of wealth and Mandy’s lack of family, I felt like I was thrown off the train of this story before it reached the end station (there was also no “Christmas List” to be found anywhere in the book…….guess there wasn’t time to include it??) Perhaps Ms. Jarchow should have taken this one back to the drawing board – there is a lot of potential here for it to be a much better story if she would have given it more room to expand and develop. Hopefully she will spend more time on her future works and create characters that readers will be able to root for. I will not be recommending this book to anyone and will not purchase a copy for my shelves as I couldn’t stand to spend money on it. Try harder next time Ms. Jarchow!!
I received this e-book from Prism Publishing Group via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. I will receive no fiscal compensation from either company for this review.