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September 30, 2018

The Christmas Wishing Tree by @EmilyMarchBooks ~ a Review & Giveaway

by MK French

Devin Murphy was adopted into the Eternity Springs family, but he still feels the call of the ocean and Australia. While on one visit home, a wrong number has him talking to six-year-old Reilly as Santa. Reilly wants a father, as his mother Jenna works hard all the time on her own. Their situation is worse when his mother is doxxed and swatted, and the perpetrator can't be found. Devin didn't think playing along as Santa would become such a big deal, but eventually, everything comes together for all of them.
Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

The Christmas Wishing Tree
September 2018; St. Martin's; 978-1250131720
audio, ebook, print (320 pages); holiday, romance
I had only read one other Eternity Springs novel, but this really doesn't rely on knowing who the characters are in order to enjoy them. We meet everyone that we need to over the course of the story, and the small town of Eternity Springs has its charming stores and locals popping up. The story itself spans two years, longer than a lot of romance novels usually do, because the first Christmas have Devin and Jenna talking on the phone as much as he and Reilly do, and they have great conversations even if they only know each other as Santa and Reilly's Mom. When they talk again later and eventually meet in person, their friendship and attraction is immediate. None of their concerns are brushed aside, and the reality of Jenna's situation is dealt with seriously.

There are a fair number of coincidences throughout the second half of the book that feel very date-movie-cliche related. It doesn't detract from the story at all, and makes it seem more like the holiday story that it is. This is a cute addition to the Eternity Springs romances, and a fun one to read while curled up under a blanket with tea or hot cocoa.

Buy The Christmas Wishing Tree at Amazon

Q&A with Emily March

Q: Why do you love Christmas, first of all? What kind of feelings inspire to you?
A: I love Christmas because the season is centered around things that are important to me—family, tradition, my religion. I’m one of those people who sets my radio on the Christmas station right after Thanksgiving and I don’t change it. Some of my favorite memories of my childhood and my children’s childhoods center around Christmas. I’m enjoying making similar memories with my grandsons nowadays.

Q: What kind of memories do you treasure of your Christmas when you were a child?
A: I grew up in a lower middle class home. My mother was a stay-at-home mom, but at Christmas she worked in a local department store in the gift wrapping department and used her paychecks to pay for Christmas. When I got old enough, I worked a few seasons there with her. I remember the excitement of Christmas Eve working so hard to get all the packages wrapped for customers so that we could go home and begin our traditional Christmas celebrations. My mom has been gone for five years now, but every time I wrap a package, I think of her. Now THAT’S a gift! (Plus, I can wrap a gorgeous box myself.)

Q: Can you describe to us your typical Christmas growing up? What you ate, if you went to the mass, if you spent Christmas with all your family. The favorite gift received that you are still treasuring.
A: We usually went to midnight mass, then came home and unwrapped one package. ONE. Except the year my dad got carried away and we opened everything under the tree. He was more of a little kid than any of his five children! I was disappointed Christmas morning, so I never did that again.

Favorite gift? Well, with five kids, my parents watched their pennies. We did not receive extravagant gifts. But when I was in seventh grade, I played on the school tennis team. That year my parents gave me the tennis racket I’d dreamed of owning but never asked for because I knew it was beyond their means. I’ll never forget my joy upon opening it.

Q: Do you think that Christmas is in grade to produce miracles in people?
A: Well, Celeste Blessing would say that people have miracles inside them all year round.

Q: What’s your favorite scene in The Christmas Wishing Tree?
A: I think when Reilly first calls Santa. Devin is such a sweetheart of a hero.

Q: What inspired your latest release?
A: My ideas come from lots of different places. My idea for THE CHRISTMAS WISHING TREE came when I read the true story of how the NORAD Santa Tracker came into being back in the 1950’s. It’s such a sweet story that I knew it was perfect to adapt for Eternity Springs.

Q: What are you currently working on?
A: I’m finishing up the next Eternity Springs book titled JACKSON, which is the first of a new family trilogy set inside the Eternity Springs world. We’re going to visit a new locale, Enchanted Canyon, which is deep in the heart of my home—the Hill Country of Texas. JACKSON is due out next summer.

Q: Do you have any special routine that you follow when you are writing?
A: When I’m serious about diving into the story, I listen to movie soundtracks and lock myself off the internet. I usually begin each writing day with music from Dragonheart and I always finish a book to The Last of the Mohicans.

Q: Did you have to do a lot of research for this book or any other? If so do you have a fascinating fact that you have learned you would like to share with us?
A: At this point my Eternity Springs world is so well established that I don’t need to do a lot of research for the setting—except for checking my town map to find out exactly where I put particular shops or houses. I do research any plot line information I need. For THE CHRISTMAS WISHING TREE I did a lot of research about doxing and swatting. I also try to visit any actual places I’m writing about. For instance, while I’ve visited Nashville in the past, I went again last Christmas in order to get the feel of the city during the season.

Q: Is there a genre you haven't written that you would like to try?
A: I’m a thriller reader, so I’d love to try my hand at one of those one day. I also have an idea for a women’s fiction novel that I want to write as soon as I can fit it into my schedule.

Q: How do you celebrate release day?
A: Ordinarily, we pop the cork on a bottle of champagne and have a nice dinner with something chocolate for dessert. This time, though, I am officially on the wagon as part of my wedding diet. My only daughter is getting married in February and I’m determined to be twenty pounds lighter. It’s my Christmas Wish. :)

About the Author

Emily March is the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty novels, including the critically acclaimed Eternity Springs series. Publishers Weekly calls March a "master of delightful banter," and her heartwarming, emotionally charged stories have been named to Best of the Year lists by Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Romance Writers of America. A graduate of Texas A&M University, Emily is an avid fan of Aggie sports and her recipe for jalapeƱo relish has made her a tailgating legend.

Connet with Emily: website  *  Twitter Facebook  *  Pinterest


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Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and golden retriever. 

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  1. Oooh! What fun! I cannot wait to start my Christmas reads!

  2. This is definitely a really cute Christmas romance. :)