cover image The Noel Stranger

The Noel Stranger

Richard Paul Evans. Simon & Schuster, $19.99 trade paper (238p) ISBN 978-1-5011-7205-2

Evans adds another installment to his large Christmas collection with this sweet second tale in the Noel Collection series (following The Noel Diary). Maggie Walther has just discovered that her husband, Clive, has been arrested for bigamy. Clive was on a shortlist of Salt Lake City mayoral candidates, making the news of his two families even more devastating and drawing Maggie deeper into the public eye. Maggie leaves her catering company in the hands of her friend and employee, Carina, as she attempts to deal with the emotional fallout of this discovery. When Christmas comes around, the fetching Andrew delivers the family’s Christmas tree. Maggie is intrigued by him, and the two strike up a friendship in which he shows her a different, more rustic side of Salt Lake City and rescues her from her depression by encouraging her to live in the moment. But as their friendship begins to blossom into romance, Maggie realizes how little she knows about Andrew. When a secret from his past threatens to unravel their relationship, Maggie turns to her faith to decide if she can forgive a person for past mistakes. Evans’s fans will appreciate this tale of finding the good in everyone and loving people for who they are. (Nov.)