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An empty nest has Ingrid Christiansen dreading the upcoming holidays, but her husband, John, couldn’t be more excited about this new season of life. He even has a surprise trip abroad planned. He’s sure she’ll love it. What’s more romantic than Christmas in Paris?

Before he can stop her, however, Ingrid agrees to spearhead a major church project. Then their faithful dog, Butterscotch, needs emergency surgery, draining their savings. And then—because disasters strike in threes—an unexpected guest arrives, dredging up old hurts.

As a beautiful blanket of snow transforms the north woods into a winter wonderland, a deep chill settles over John and Ingrid’s marriage. With the holidays fast approaching, their only hope of keeping their love evergreen depends on turning the page on the past and embracing a new chapter of their future.

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Evergreen, By: Susan May Warren (A Christiansen Winter Novella) What a wonderful book by Susan May Warren. A book of fiction that touches so many of the different things that one could experience in their own everyday life. The pain, heartache, frustration, are so real to me in this story. I loved the faith and the struggles with faith and acceptance. Learning to open your heart. Be sure to get your copy.

“Fix what? Their fractured family? A lonely Christmas? Perhaps, but he could try. The Live Nativity display he drew up would be legendary, and if that didn’t prove to his wife that he could buy into her need to stick around, celebrate Christmas even without their family, he didn’t know what would,” John ponders in Susan May Warren’s short love story, "Evergreen." Part of the Christiansen Family series, this two hundred and eight page paperback targets those who love clean romance with relational conflicts, confrontation, and forgiveness. With no profanity, overtly sexual scenes, or extreme violence, the story focuses on learning to forgive others and trust God. Continuing the story of the large family, this current-day novella has patriarch John looking forward to having his resort home in northern Minnesota to himself finally while his wife, Ingrid, is scared to death of the loneliness and quiet void that has settled between them. While John secretly plans an expensive trip to Paris to renew Ingrid and his wedding vows during Christmas, financial setbacks and church commitments make it hard to arrange. First their sixteen year old family dog becomes so ill that surgery is required, and then Ingrid offers to organize the town’s annual Live Nativity in time for the holidays. The emotional bow breaks between the married couple when they are asked to open their home to a newcomer they barely know. As a wedge deepens amid the two adults over the sick dog, an overseas trip, a myriad of church activities, and the arrival of their new guest, John tries ardently to fix each problem while Ingrid blatantly refuses to move on with her life of no longer mothering her children. John, ever trying to correct everything, is at a quandary of how to approach his aloof, despondent wife while Ingrid questions when her love waxed cold toward the man she married so many years ago. Using the backdrop of the issues of empty-nest syndrome, the book hones in on how problems surface and bubble to a boil when one no longer trusts God or a marriage partner. Warren’s quick, redemptive tome shows how getting to the root of a problem within a marriage can be hurtful and painful, but it will make the union stronger with more love when God is the center of it. Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s opinions.

Evergreen by Susan May Warren Wanted to read this book because it's about a married couple who are now empty nesters and it's the holiday season. He has a secret trip for her and she's in the dumps and just can't find the holiday cheer as all the kids will not be around for the holiday. We have experienced this ourselves and try to make the best of it. Interesting to see the chain of events, very similar to ones we have had in the past. Further crises occur and you wonder if they will ever have a happy holiday again. Enjoy hearing of the picnics while watching the game. Real start to Christmas is told and the live nativity and much more does happen...Other works by the author are highlighted at the end. I received this book from The Book Club Network ( via Tyndale Publishers in exchange for my honest review.