Blog Tour: Review of "Silent Days, Holy Night" by Phyllis Clark Nichols + Giveaway!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Silent Days Holy Night blog tour

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

silent days, holy night 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.

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | CBD | Book Depository


MY REVIEW
I have to give this book a 4/5 star rating.  It was absolutely a darling read and I love how young Julia was portrayed.  She's a very intelligent and perpetually curious soul, and Nichols wrote her character perfectly from the 1st person perspective.  I've read a lot of books (and seen a Hallmark movie or two) where preteen children are either written as entirely too old or entirely too childish, but the author balanced Julia very well.  I also appreciated that disabilities were portrayed in a positive and accurate setting.  Mr. Lafferty wasn't seen as scary; Julia just wanted to learn more about him and befriend him.  We seriously need more of this in fiction (and real life).

This book is also a very clean read, which I appreciated, and isn't a run-of-the-mill Christmas story.  There are mysteries to unravel and even a bit of suspense involving some troublemakers that decide to harass Mr. Lafferty.  The story is a great reminder of what we should be doing around Christmastime (and all the time, I suppose) : helping folks who might be passed over by others, setting aside time to bring joy to someone, and learning about someone with an open mind and heart.  

The only reason I've docked a star from the rating -- the prologue and epilogue.  While I don't want to get into details and spoil anything in case anyone wants to read the book, I will say that they seemed to kind of stick out away from the story.  I had trouble getting through the prologue, despite the beautiful prose, because I found it somewhat vague and I just couldn't connect with the characters (and was worried that the whole book would be like that). The epilogue was similar.  After I read the book in its entirety and thought about it, I did see the reasoning behind including the prologue and epilogue, and it is a neat little way of wrapping the story up, but I perhaps would have included the material from both in the epilogue.  

I truly did enjoy reading this book - it's a cozy read for anyone who's looking for a Christmas book this season; it's heartwarming and innocent, refreshing, and it'll get you into the holiday spirit pretty quickly!  If you keep reading through this post, you'll also have the opportunity to enter a giveaway for Silent Days, Holy Night!  

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Phyllis-Publicity750x1000

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 cofounder 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.  

CONNECT WITH PHYLLIS: website | Facebook | Twitter

silent days, holy night giveaway

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.


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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