Recently widowed Beth Hostetler brings her toddler son to live with her grandparents until she can strike out on her own in Beckstrand’s formulaic third Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill Amish romance (after Huckleberry Summer). Even though Beth has vowed never to remarry, her grandparents decide she would be perfect for undistinguished local bachelor Tyler Yoder. Tyler finds his way barred not only by Beth’s reluctance, but also by her abusive former in-laws, who would like her to marry her late husband’s brother. The title notwithstanding, Christmas is the focus of only a few scenes instead of being a consistent theme. The Amish cultural details and setting are neither convincing nor entertaining, and the toddler is impressively twee. The clichéd plot doesn’t allow Beckstrand to make any of her characters sympathetic, and Beth’s wishes are repeatedly ignored while Tyler remains a saintly nonentity throughout. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/01/2014 Release date: 10/01/2014 Genre: Fiction
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