Thursday, December 10, 2020

The Christmas Wish

 by Shanna Hatfield

In a time so unlike any we've ever experienced, we could all benefit from more kindness, more joy, and more hope. 

That's part of why I so loved writing  The Christmas Wish

In the story, the heroine runs a bookstore by day, but at night, she sits before her bedroom window, pen in hand, and writes anonymous letters to people in town, wishing special wishes for them. 

Wouldn't it be a wonderful thing to do that in our modern world. To send special wishes out to people who could use a cheerful boost, or a word of encouragement, something to lift low spirits. 

As the Christmas draws closer, I find myself drawn to ideas that could bring a smile to someone or brighten their day. 

What's one thing you can think of that might be a help to others and bring them holiday cheer?

Home is the last place he wants to be for Christmas . . .

When an urgent telegram arrives from his mother, begging him to return home, old West photographer Percy Bruner can’t refuse. After an almost five-year absence, he dreads returning to the small eastern Oregon town of Hardman where he grew up. He’d dreamed of raising a family there, and loving his sweetheart until they were both old and gray. But with her gone, the only thing the town can offer him is painful memories.

Now that his family needs him, Percy must face the ghosts that continue to haunt him, and make the hard choice of letting go of his past or giving up on his future.

Will his return the place he once loved give shattered hearts a chance to heal and make a special Christmas wish come true?

Full of small-town characters, sweet romance, Christmas cheer, and second chances, The Christmas Wish offers a heartfelt holiday read sprinkled with humor and hope


“I can carry it.” Percy took his purchases from her. “What are you baking upstairs?” he asked, sniffing the air again, catching whiffs of cinnamon and apples.

“I’m making applesauce. It has to simmer for a few hours. Grandpa promised not to let it scorch.” Brynn’s eyes lifted to the ceiling, as though she could see through the wooden boards to check on her grandfather.

“It smells wonderful. I’m sure your customers are leaving today with their stomachs rumbling in hunger.”

She laughed. “I doubt that, Percy. Especially if they’re like you and come in wearing crumbs.”

Embarrassed, he hastily shifted his purchases to one hand, then swiped the other across his face.

Brynn laughed again and stepped in front of him, brushing her hand across the lapel of his coat. “There. Now no one will know you aren’t the starving photographer in need of nourishment some of the women in town have decided you must be.”

“Starving photographer?” He offered her a lopsided grin. “Hardly. If people keep bringing around food, I’ll gain forty pounds before Christmas.”

Percy opened the lid on the tin from Filly and held it out to Brynn. “Filly Granger made these.”

“Then I couldn’t possibly refuse,” Brynn said, taking out a cookie.

“Take two, then you can share one with your grandfather.” Percy waggled the tin until she lifted a second cookie.

“Thank you for sharing your treasure.”

“You’re welcome.” Percy edged toward the door, realizing he’d rather stay with Brynn a while longer. She was easy to talk to, and to be around. He hadn’t really noticed that about her when he was younger, but back then, his only thought had been of Anna.

He’d discovered in recent days that Brynn was funny and kind but always in motion, always thinking of something to do, whether it was for others or for the bookstore. To him, it seemed her mind was never quiet and she didn’t take much time to rest. He’d seen the light on above the bookstore several evenings long after most of Hardman was asleep. He couldn’t help but wonder if Brynn sat in bed reading one of the romances she enjoyed or plotting ways to conquer the world.

Amused with his thoughts and the picture in his mind of her devising battle plans at her desk, he grinned. “Have a good day, Brynn, and thanks for the pen and papers.”

“You’re welcome, Percy. Thank you for shopping at Rutherford’s Books and Stationery.”

“My pleasure. Maybe I’ll come back again and have a visit with Teddy.” Percy glanced at the chair where the cat slept then opened the door and stepped out into the nippy November afternoon.

Despite the chill around him, he felt oddly warm inside as he made his way back to the mercantile.

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