“I was lost in an emotional wilderness, and I needed all the help I could get.”
Maggie cannot step a foot outside of her house without feeling the whole world is watching her. After suffering through a very public and humiliating divorce to a local politician, she spends most of her time holed up at home, sleeping at odd hours. Her catering business feels the strain, but her best friend Carina is doing her best to keep things afloat while Maggie heals and finds a way ahead. Carina is one of the first to coerce Maggie to leave her house and meet her at a coffee shop, giving her a pep talk about changing her surroundings to change her life. With Carina’s words in mind, she decides to get a Christmas tree and the stranger she meets at the lot changes her destiny.
The Noel Stranger is the latest novel by my favorite author, Richard Paul Evans. It is the second book in his latest Christmas series, The Noel Collection. The first book is The Noel Diary. I pre-ordered this book months ago and received it in the mail about a week after it was released.
Andrew and Maggie hit it off very quickly and Maggie finds herself trusting Andrew enough to take a trip with him after only knowing him two weeks. Carina advises her against going until she knows more about Andrew, but Maggie focuses on what she sees and doesn’t feel the need to examine his past. After falling in love, she discovers details about Andrew that completely change her view of him and she finally sees that she was too trusting. When the complete truth comes out, Maggie must decide if she truly knows Andrew or if he will stay a stranger.
While The Noel Stranger had an interesting plot and took a twist that I didn’t see coming, part of it was very unbelievable. I don’t think most women would go on in international trip with a man they just met and hadn’t fully known his background. Her lack of curiosity about Andrew’s past was hard to work around. It ended as a sweet story and it was great to see forgiveness as a theme of a book for the holidays, though. I would recommend this for anyone who it looking for an easy and uplifting Christmas read.