Blanche’s Book Club: ‘Winter Stroll’.

I spent a majority of my weekend working… and I STILL am not done with the client project I was hoping to finish. It’s not an ideal way to start the week, but it’s okay.

I’ve got a fresh post of coffee and I slept pretty well, so I’ll tackle it as best I can today (and hopefully will finish). I’m also heading out to the store today — and I hope it’s not too busy. One good thing about the pandemic is that there can only be a certain number of people in the store at once (but there is always a line).

I am going to pick up a few items for my solo Thanksgiving, plus items to hunker down post-holiday. For the longest time, I was living strictly off meal-kits and I’m about to go back to doing that, but there’s always a few things you need at the store: vegan butter, salad dressing, fresh fruit, etc.

Those are my plans for today! Last week, I was feeling so much anxiety about what life will be like after the holiday — with so many people possibly getting sick. But, it’s another one of those things that I can’t control and I just have to stick to the present… and mind my own business 🙂

To help my lockdown anxiety, I bought a few holiday activity books from the Dollar Tree — complete with Rudolph word searches and Santa mazes — and I got some holiday books from the Libby app.

I’ve already read one of them, which is likely why you’re here: “Winter Stroll” by Elin Hilderbrand. Here’s the scoop:

Another Christmas on Nantucket finds Winter Street Inn owner Kelley Quinn reflecting on the past year as he writes a holiday letter to friends and family. Though the year has had its share of misfortune and worry, the Quinns have much to celebrate. Kelley, now single, at least is on better terms with his first wife Margaret, who is using her celebrity to lure customers to the inn in record numbers. Their son Kevin has a beautiful new baby, Genevieve, with the Inn’s French housekeeper, Isabelle; and their daughter, Ava, is finally dating a nice guy–her devoted colleague, Scott.

Now the Quinns are looking forward to celebrating Genevieve’s baptism, welcoming Isabelle to the family, and enjoying the cheer of Nantucket’s traditional Christmas Stroll. But just when a peaceful family gathering seems within reach, Kelley’s estranged second wife, Mitzi, shows up on the island after souring on her relationship with the inn’s former Santa Claus. Soon Kelley isn’t the only Quinn entertaining a surprise guest from Christmases past as lovers old and new gather beneath the mistletoe. With jealousy, passion, and eggnog consumption at an all-time high, it’s going to take a whole lot more than a Christmas miracle to get the Quinns–and the inn–through the holidays intact.

This is book 2 in the Winter Street series, which has 4 books total. I read the first book last year (Winter Street), and loved it. I was a little worried I may not remember much of the plot details when I picked up this book, but honestly it could stand alone.

Of course, the more I read Elin Hilderbrand, the more I just love her style. This series (so far) does a good job of capturing the messiness of the holidays, which I can appreciate.

One of the main parts of this book is that Mitzi’s son has gone missing. There’s a bit of a cliff-hanger at the end of book one and in book two, her son’s troop overseas has been missing for an entire year. This book leaves another hanger at the end, so I’ve already got book 3 on reserve. I am so curious to find out what will happen to him!

I would definitely recommend these books if you’re looking for some light holiday reading this year. Hope you all have a good holiday week planned — or not planned at all 🙂

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