Melody
ISBN: 1590384814
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
Published: 2005
122 pgs


From the back cover:

Hope Jensen is a young, single woman and an aspiring newspaper writer, and when she receives a much-needed but anonymous Christmas gift, she's determined to find her benefactor. That search leads her to an unusual family with a longstanding Christmas tradition. Sensing a front-page feature article, Hope desperately wants to publish their story, but doing so would be a breach of trust. What she decides to do will change her life forever.

Destined to become a classic Christmas tale, Christmas Jars is a heartwarming story that will restore your faith in mankind and make you want to start your own Christmas Jar tradition.


Louise Jensen is expecting a quiet and peaceful Christmas Eve, just like it had been for her for the previous years. However, something, or someone unusual expecting for her when she dines alone at Chuck's Chicken 'n' Biscuits, the usual place where she always spent her Christmas Eve dinner. Seeing the abandoned baby behind her booth and knowing this was no random moment, Louise reaches out to her and decides to bring her home, naming her Hope.

Hope Jensen turns out to be a cheerful and bright little girl; she has big dreams of being a newspaper writer and aimed to be the next great American journalist besides Bernstein, Woodward and Graham. Through patience and hard work, she works her way up slowly. Just when things seem bright and hopeful for her, Louise told her she has cancer. But this news does not discourage them any further as they continue to be positive and supportive of each other. Unfortunately, Louise lose the battle in the end.

Feeling loss and sad, Hope turns to her work and work even harder than before. Then it happened one night someone broke into her apartment and stole away her things. After making a report and the police collected all the evidence, she finds a brown sack sitting inside the open apartment door. It is large glass jar filled with money.

Curious and eager to find out who and why someone left the money jar with her, she decided to do a little investigation and write a story on it, and hoping that one day it will make it to the front page. It then leads her to the Maxwell family, and soon Hope gets closer to the family as they share with her stories about their Christmas Jars and how they started this tradition. But writing this story will be a breach of trust and in the end, what she did and the moral behind this little story will touch your heart and makes you think of the Christmas spirit and the power of giving.

Though the story a little short in my opinion, the message behind this story is both heartwarming and a powerful one. The Christmas Jar tradition really interests me and I might want to start one myself one day. This is a true Christmas classic which I will find myself reading again and again during the festive seasons.


16 Responses
  1. Lynne Says:

    I read this one last Christmas and enjoyed it - both the book and the idea of a Christmas jar.

    I'll be reading more from this author.


  2. Melody Says:

    Lynne - I too love the idea of the Christmas Jars. I'll definitely check out this author's works after reading this. :)


  3. Trish Says:

    I got chills reading your review--I love the random acts of kindness that surround the holidays (even though I wish they would carry out throughout the year more). This sounds like the perfect curl up by the fire (if we had a working fireplace) kind of holiday book!


  4. Joanne Says:

    Thanks for the great review, I think this would be the perfect holiday gift for a few people on my list this year.


  5. Matt Says:

    This is a book about love, kindness, and sharing. I can see this one's being a new holiday classics. I'll check it out. :)


  6. Melody Says:

    Trish - Yep, I agree! It'd be wonderful if this random acts of kindness will be carried out throughout the year!

    Joanne - I intend to get this book for a few booklover friends as a holiday gift too! :)

    Matt - I hope you'll enjoy it if you get to it!


  7. Julia Says:

    I was trying to find this book the other days, but couldn't find it. I notice it was written a long time ago?


  8. Melody Says:

    Julia - On my book it stated it was printed in 2005, but I'm sure some bookstores will still have it. Perhaps you can google it and see if there's any other bookstores have it?


  9. Thank you for the wonderful review, Melody! I have heard this is a good one.


  10. Melody Says:

    Wendy - I really enjoyed this story. I'm definitely looking for more holiday-themed books now that Christmas is approaching! ;)


  11. Ladytink_534 Says:

    I've seen wonderful videos about these Christmas Jars that are inspired by this story :) Great holiday read!


  12. Melody Says:

    Jen - I'm sure these videos about Christmas Jars are heartwarming and touching to watch.


  13. Alice Teh Says:

    Thanks for the review, Melody! I might just get this one to read during the holidays. :)


  14. Melody Says:

    That's great, Alice! I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I do! :)


  15. Shana Says:

    This sounds like an interesting book. I sometimes have trouble with Christmas novels. I think I've read three and I would rank all of them as 3/5's.

    Shana
    Literarily


  16. Melody Says:

    Shana, I think this is the best Christmas novel I read so far...