cover image The Gift

The Gift

Cecelia Ahern, Author . Harper $19.99 (302p) ISBN 978-0-06-170

At PW , we know it’s summertime when the Christmas books start showing up.

The Gift Cecelia Ahern . Harper , $19.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-06-170626-4

Ahern wades into the Christmas fiction fray with a winning tale of magic and redemption. Lou Suffern is a busy man, and his family’s growing weary of constantly taking the backseat to his career. On a whim, he offers Gabe, a homeless man he meets outside his office, a low-level job, and the uncharacteristically kind gesture plays out in a very unexpected way when Lou learns that Gabe has the power to be in two places at once. As the holidays draw nearer, Gabe tries to make Lou realize the importance of his family, but slow-to-change Lou might not come around to Gabe’s way of thinking until it’s too late. Ahern’s an accomplished storyteller, and her writing chops elevate this far above the normal holiday fare. There’s magic, but it’s not campy, and the sentiment is real. (Nov.)