Synopsis from Amazon:
Best friends Audrey Barrett and Eve Dawson are looking forward to celebrating Christmas in postwar America, thrilled at the prospect of starting new traditions with their five-year-old sons. But when the 1951 Sears Christmas Wish Book arrives and the boys start obsessing over every toy in it, Audrey and Eve realize they must first teach them the true significance of the holiday. They begin by helping Bobby and Harry plan gifts of encouragement and service for those in their community, starting by walking an elderly neighbor’s yellow Lab—since a dog topped the boys’ wish list for Santa. In the charming tale that follows, Audrey and Eve are surprised to find their own hearts healing from the tragedies of war and opening to the possibility of forgiveness and new love.
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Leslie’s Review: 5 Stars/A favorite of 2021
Lynn Austin’s The Wish Book Christmas is one of the best Christmas reads I have ever read. What drew me to the book was the historical setting and the Sears Christmas Wish Book itself. The book takes place in the 1950s and is a follow-up to Ms. Austin’s book, If I Were You. (If I Were You is still on my TBR list, but I did not feel entirely lost while reading The Wish Book Christmas.) The Wish Book Christmas center’s around Bobby and Harry, the young sons of Audrey and Eve.
Bobby and Harry are obsessed with the Sears Christmas Wish Book and want everything that’s in the Wish Book (for boys that is). I remember when I was a young girl myself, writing down everything in the girls section and giving the list to my family in the late 80s-early 90s. It was nice to be swept up in the nostalgia and memories of Christmas past while reading the book.
Besides the nostalgia and the time period, what I loved most about the book is the Message woven throughout. Audrey and Eve do not want their sons to become greedy and expect to get everything they have asked for. Inspired by the Christmas Story from the Bible and the boys’ role in the Christmas Play as Wise Men as reference, Audrey and Eve come up with plans of ways for them to give back to their community.
At first, it’s a rough go, but once the boys get the hang of it, they don’t want to stop giving! Bobby and Harry then understand what the True Meaning of Christmas is: Jesus. Audrey and Eve also learn lessons of God’s Forgiveness and Grace and His Giving Nature. The grownups in their circle of friends and family are blessed by Bobby and Harry’s giving and are impressed to give themselves.
The Wish Book Christmas is a sweet Christmas read that helps to remind us what the True Meaning of Christmas actually is and what Jesus gave us. I highly recommend The Wish Book Christmas. The Wish Book Christmas has definitely become one of my favorite reads that I wouldn’t mind reading again (which is rare for me) and is one of my favorites of 2021.
Have you read The Wish Book Christmas? How did you like the book? Do you have a special Sears Christmas Wish Book memory?
I would like to thank NetGalley and the Publisher for the opportunity to read this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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