Gentleman and the Thief Blog Tour

27 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Gentleman and the Thief

Proper Romance Victorian

by Sarah M. Eden

Paperback : 368 pages

Publisher : Shadow Mountain

November 3, 2020

Amazon

A gentleman scribes penny dreadful novels by night and falls in love with a woman who is a music teacher by day—and a thief at night.

LONDON 1865

From the moment Hollis Darby meets Ana Newport, he’s smitten. Even though he’s from a wealthy, established family and she isn’t, he wishes he could have a life with her by his side. But Hollis has a secret: the deep coffers that have kept his family afloat for generations are bare, so he supports himself by writing penny dreadfuls under a pseudonym. If not for the income from his novels, he would be broke.

Ana Newport also has a secret. Though she once had a place in society thanks to her father’s successful business, bankruptcy and scandal reduced his fortune to nothing more than a crumbling town house. So Ana teaches music during the day, and at night she assumes the identity of the “Phantom Fox.” She breaks into the homes of the wealthy to reclaim trinkets and treasures she feels were unjustly stolen from her family when they were struggling.

When Hollis’s brother needs to hire a music tutor for his daughter, Hollis recommends Ana, giving him a chance to spend time with her. Ana needs the income and is eager for the opportunity to get to know the enigmatic gentleman. What neither of them expects is how difficult it will be to keep their respective secrets from each other.

When a spree of robberies rocks the city, Ana and Hollis join forces to solve the crimes, discovering that working together deepens the affection between them. After all, who better to save the day than a gentleman and a thief?

ADVANCE PRAISE

  • “The real joy in Eden’s follow-up to The Lady and the Highwayman (2019) is the furthering of the overarching crime story and the work of the Dread Penny Society as Hollis and Ana pursue a chaste romance. Eden excels at exploring the realities of Victorian life and class differences. Once again, chapters of penny dreadfuls written by the characters are interspersed throughout, with Hollis’ story about a school for ghosts offering particular delight. Fans of Eden’s smart series will be thrilled and impatient for the next installment.”— Booklist, starred review
  • “Every time I thought my racing heart just couldn’t take the suspense anymore, I’d turn the page and smile.”— Bookconfessions
  • “Eden writes it well, so thoroughly researched that you’re transported and in Victoria England. Great suspense and romance.”— Leslie, Books and Socks Rock
  • “Undeniably clever, suspenseful, well-researched, and deftly written…”— Katie Jackson, RegencyProofreading.com
  • “Charming, suggestive, and featuring rich historical details, The Gentleman and the Thief has the elements of a gritty, juicy penny dreadful.”— Foreword Reviews

Review

I wasn’t sure what to expect with this one since I hadn’t read book one in the series. Since I love London, and the author, I jumped right in. It has a Sherlock Homes feel to it–a whodunit with a dash of romance. There are two alternating points of view plus two different penny stories mixed in. I found myself skipping over some of the additional stories mixed in because it was confusing to me to keep track of all the story lines, authors and plots. The main story built up well and kept me turning pages. I enjoyed the concept behind their secret society as well as their motto and the work they do. Cozy mystery meets Robin Hood. Might I suggest reading them in order? I had fun with this book. It is truly unique!

About the Author

Sarah M. Eden is a USA Today best-selling author of witty and charming historical romances, including 2019’s Foreword Reviews INDIE Awards Gold Winner for Romance, The Lady and the Highwayman, and 2020 Holt Medallion finalist, Healing Hearts. She is a two-time “Best of State” Gold Medal winner for fiction and a three-time Whitney Award winner. Combining her obsession with history and her affinity for tender love stories, Sarah loves crafting deep characters and heartfelt romances set against rich historical backdrops. She holds a bachelor’s degree in research and happily spends hours perusing the reference shelves of her local library. 

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

BLOG TOUR BLURB:

Join the virtual online blog tour of THE GENTLEMAN AND THE THIEF, Sarah M. Eden’s highly acclaimed second novel in The Dread Penny Society Series, November 2 through November 29, 2020. Forty popular blogs specializing in historical mystery/suspense, historical romance, and inspirational fiction will join in the celebration of its release with exclusive excerpts, spotlights, or reviews of this new Victorian-era novel set in London, England.

BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE:

Nov 02          Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)

Nov 02          The Lit Bitch (Excerpt)

Nov 03          Getting Your Read On (Review)

Nov 03          Literary Time Out (Review)

Nov 03          Storybook Reviews (Review)

Nov 04          Heidi Reads (Review)

Nov 04          Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Spotlight)

Nov 05          Library of Clean Reads (Review)

Nov 06          Relz Reviewz (Review)

Nov 07          Probably at the Library (Spotlight)

Nov 08          The Christian Fiction Girl (Review)

Nov 09          So Little Time… (Spotlight)

Nov 09          Captivated Reading (Review)

Nov 10          Among the Reads (Review)

Nov 10          Bookworm Lisa (Review)

Nov 11          For Where Your Treasure Is (Spotlight)

Nov 11          Christian Chick’s Thoughts       (Review)

Nov 12          Books, Teacups & Reviews (Spotlight)

Nov 12          Fiction Aficionado (Review)

Nov 13          Randi Loves 2 Read (Spotlight)

Nov 14          The Book Diva’s Reads (Spotlight)

Nov 15          My Jane Austen Book Club (Excerpt)

Nov 16          Gwendalyn’s Books (Review)

Nov 17          Book Bustle (Review)

Nov 18          Jorie Loves a Story (Review)

Nov 18          An Historian About Town (Review)

Nov 19          Lu’s Reviews (Review)

Nov 20          Reading with Emily (Review)

Nov 20          Books and Socks Rock (Review)

Nov 21          Bringing Up Books (Review)

Nov 21          Bookish Rantings (Review)

Nov 22          The Bibliophile Files (Review)

Nov 23          Impressions in Ink (Review)

Nov 23          A Bookish Way of Life (Review)

Nov 24          Bookfoolery (Review)

Nov 24          Wishful Endings (Excerpt)

Nov 25          Chicks, Rogues and Scandals (Review)

Nov 25          Joy of Reading (Review)

Nov 26          From Pemberley to Milton (Excerpt)

Nov 27          Fire and Ice (Review)

Nov 27          Austenesque Reviews (Review)

Nov 28          Impressions in Ink (Review)

Nov 28          Book Confessions of an Ex-Ballerina (Review)

Nov 29          Laura’s Reviews (Review)

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Lucy Shimmers & The Prince of Peace Blog Tour and Giveaway

27 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

ROB DIAMOND’S NEW FEATURE FILM LUCY SHIMMERS & THE PRINCE OF PEACE ANNOUNCES RELEASE

-Film debuts on Amazon Prime on Black Friday, Nov. 27 and Living Scriptures on Dec. 4- Purchase

Salt Lake City – Writer, Director and Producer Rob Diamond announced today that his new film, LUCY SHIMMERS & THE PRINCE OF PEACE will be released on Amazon Prime on Black Friday, November 27 and then on Living Scriptures on Friday, December 4.

LUCY SHIMMERS & THE PRINCE OF PEACE is Diamond’s 15th feature film and was produced completely in Utah early in 2020. “I can truly say that this is my favorite film I’ve ever made,” said Diamond. “The inspiration for the film came from a dream I had and then the story and the entire production came together absolutely seamlessly.”

LUCY SHIMMERS tells the story of five-year-old Lucy and the incredible influence she has on those around her, especially hardened criminal Edgar. Lucy, with the help of her guardian angel, create miracles that change his heart and inspire a second chance in his life.

The film features mostly local talent, including Shawn Stevens as Grandpa Jackson, Adam Hightower as James Shimmers, and Florencia Stevens as Isabelle Shimmers. In addition, the film stars well-known actor Vincent Vargas (THE MAYANS) and newcomer Scarlett Diamond in the title-role of Lucy.

 Scarlett Diamond just so happens to be the granddaughter of filmmaker Rob Diamond.
“Granted I’m biased, but Scarlett was absolutely incredible. She is only five-years-old and this was her first major speaking role and she proved she’s a natural!” proclaimed Diamond.

In addition to writing, directing and producing, Diamond also operates an acting studio and many of the actors in the film are current and former Diamond students. The film was shot entirely on location in Salt Lake City and Heber, Utah early in 2020. “Our last day of filming was literally the day before Utah shut down in March because of the pandemic,” said Diamond.

For more information on LUCY SHIMMERS & THE PRINCE OF PEACE, visit its IMDB page at: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11916254/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1.

Movie Trailer

Giveaway

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Isabelle and Alexander

25 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Isabelle and Alexander

Isabelle and Alexander

on May 4, 2021
Pages: 368
Format: eARC
three-stars
Buy the BookGoodreads
London, 1850

Isabelle Rackham knows she will not marry for love. Though arranged marriages have fallen out of fashion, hers has been settled for some time to combine the upper-middle-class wealth of her father’s coal mines with Alexander Osgood’s prospering Northern country textile mills. Though not a man prone to romantic gestures, Alexander is well-known as an eligible bachelor. His good looks have turned more than one head, so Isabelle is content to think of herself as Alexander’s wife.

However, her marriage is not what she expected. Northern England is nothing like her home farther west in the lake country. Cold, dreary, and dark, the soot from the textile mills creates a gray hue that seems to cling to everything in the city of Manchester. Alexander is distant and aloof, preferring to spend his time at the mill rather than with her at home. Their few conversations are brief, polite, and lacking any emotion, leaving Isabelle lonely and desperately homesick.

Sensing his wife’s unhappiness, Alexander suggests a trip to his country estate. Isabelle hopes this will be an opportunity to get to know her new husband without the distractions of his business. But the change of scenery doesn’t bring them any closer. While riding together on horses, Alexander is thrown from his and becomes paralyzed. Tragedy or destiny? The help and care that Alexander now needs is Isabelle’s opportunity to forge a connection and create a deep and romantic love where nothing else could.
 

Review

Victorian Manchester England is an interesting place and time for a novel. I picked this one up expecting something different. The author details the nitty gritty every day life from the point of view of a caretaker. The main character is the wife of a businessman of a spinal injury.

One of the families has an autistic child and Glory’s family is amazing. They let their girl magnify her talents and abilities at home instead of sending her to an asylum. Isabelle and Alexander are thrown into an arranged marriage and it is awkward, slow to unfold knowing each other.

This felt more history and an exploration of medical practices than a romance. The end chapter where Isabelle and Alexander finally click felt like a tidy wrap up, since the rest of the novel their marriage is such a grind.

If you are looking for a light, fluffy escape, probably not for you. I enjoyed the talk of the mill and the elements of caring for one’s workers. The side characters who work there were well described. A completely clean book. Thanks Eidelweiss and Shadow Mountain for the read!

Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Barker

23 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Barker

Otherwise Engaged

on October 12t, 2020
Pages: 266
Format: Paperback
five-stars
She’s never been afraid of breaking the rules—until she risks breaking her heart

Constantly stifled by the rules of Society, spirited Rebecca Rowley enjoys finding ways to quietly—or not so quietly—rebel. But riding bareback and avoiding nosy neighbors are nothing compared to the thrilling secret she is keeping from her family.


When Rebecca’s quick thinking saves the life of a young girl, she unwittingly attracts the attention of the child’s dashing brother, Lieutenant Nicholas Avery. As that attention turns flirtatious, Rebecca is forced to tell him the truth: she is secretly engaged—to the one man her family would never approve of. Fortunately, Lieutenant Avery is a navy man with no wish to marry, or so they both assume as they enter into a friendship. Rebecca hopes to change her family’s mind about her betrothed, but the more she comes to know the handsome lieutenant, the more she wonders if she promised her hand too hastily.

After all her carefully laid plans are shattered during a family crisis, Rebecca must force her heart to decide. Should she stay true to the promise she made or fight for the future she’s only just begun to imagine?

Review

How have I never read a book by Joanna Barker? Oh my!!! One of the best Regencies I’ve read. Lieutenant Avery is the perfect character in every way. Rebecca is feisty and wild for her tie, even learning to shoot his pistol. Each person in this novel has a wonderfully unique personality. The plot progressed a tad slowly at first with all of the horse, bareback, hedge jumping talk. But, wow. Prepare to be swept away.

I just put all of her books on my wish list. Pick this one up for sure!

About the Author

Joanna Barker was born and raised in northern California. She discovered her love for historical fiction after visiting England as an eleven-year-old, and subsequently read every Jane Austen book she could get her hands on. After graduating with a degree in English, she worked as an acquisitions editor before devoting herself full-time to writing. She enjoys music, chocolate, and reading everything from romance to science fiction. She lives near the mountains and is just a little crazy about her husband and two wild-but-loveable boys.

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A Captain for Caroline Gray by Julie Wright

20 Nov, 2020 by in historical fiction, proper romance Leave a comment

A Captain for Caroline Gray by Julie Wrighton March 2, 2021
Pages: 336
Format: ARC
four-half-stars
Buy the BookGoodreads
Regency London

Caroline Gray’s third season in London society ends as badly as her first two—no marriage proposal, no suitor, not even a glimmer of an interested prospect. She suspects it’s because she is far too quick to speak her mind to men who are put off by her forthright opinions, her eager intellect backed by a formal education, and her unconventional ideas about the future. She is far more daring than demure to suit the taste of her class. Besides, Caroline thinks there will always be next season to find a husband.

However, her family’s dwindling income leaves Caroline with only one choice to secure her future: a one-way ticket to sail with the Fishing Fleet to India, where the son of a family friend waits. If the match doesn’t work, Caroline cannot return home.

Captain Thomas Scott loves the thrill of the open sea, and as commander of one of the ships of the “Fishing Fleet,” he ferries scores of young English girls to the shores of India to find husbands. The voyages pay well, but he struggles to understand why families would allow young women to be matched with total strangers so far away.

The trips have always been routine and uneventful—until this trip’s first night’s dinner with one Miss Caroline Gray. She engages in a lively political conversation, presenting opposing viewpoints to the conventionally opinionated gentlemen at her table. Captain Scott is secretly amused and delighted at her boldness, not to mention quite drawn to her beauty.

The rest of the passengers are shocked by her behavior and Caroline finds herself an outcast, suffering harsh judgments from the other passengers. However, she finds an unlikely ally in Captain Scott which quickly draws them closer.

Both know an arranged marriage awaits Caroline at the end of their voyage, yet the attraction between them is undeniable. Caroline will have to decide if she will honor her mother’s wishes and marry a man in India whom she has never met—thus securing a future for her and her mother—or be brave enough to throw convention to the wind and commit to love a sea captain. He may be enchanted by her bold and unconventional ways, but will his love and admiration last?

Review

I’ve been on a bit of a Naval Historical novel kick lately. After reading Georgana’s Secret by Arlem Hawks, A Captain for Caroline was perfect. They have similar themes, characters and ship based settings… historical fiction at its finest.

Caroline is off to secure her future. Her choices are being narrowed at the hand of her family and of an Englishman living in India. She’s a bluestocking–outspoken, intelligent. Being fluent in political discussion is all but forbidden for ladies. She’s not afraid to speak her mind. She believes this practice in London’s society circles fails to make her a match and leaves her without girls to call friends. Trying to fit in with the crowd, Caroline loses her feisty spirit. Wright teaches an important message about being true to who you are.

Thomas is a sea captain, in charge of helping many of the ladies of England seeking a husband to India. He’s stubborn and hard headed at times. As a reader, you’ll find yourself wanting to yell at him for his assumptions.

With stops and starts in their relationship, Wright builds a historical romance which teaches about the dangers of gossip, the need to be true to yourself and the value of sincere apologies. The villains of the story could have been a little more well fleshed out, but that’s about all I missed in this book. I so loved being swept away at sea once again. The Proper Romance series by Shadow Mountain continues to put out wonderful books!

Content: clean, mild violence.

About the Author

Julie Wright wrote her first book when she was fifteen. She’s written over twenty novels since then. She is a Whitney Awards winner for best romance with her books Cross My Heart and Lies Jane Austen Told Me, and she is a Crown Heart recipient for the novel The Fortune Café.

She has one husband, three kids, one dog, and a varying amount of fish, frogs, and salamanders (depending on attrition).

She loves writing, reading, hiking, playing with her kids, and watching her husband make dinner.

She hates mayonnaise.

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Christmas Day in the Morning: Awakening the Joy of Christmas

19 Nov, 2020 by in Shadow Mountain Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Christmas Day in the Morning: Awakening the Joy of Christmas

Christmas Day in the Morning: Awakening the Joy of Christmas

on October 6, 2020
Pages: 48
Format: Hardcover
Buy the BookGoodreads
The true joy of Christmas is to love and to awaken love.

"Christmas Day in the Morning is as gorgeous as the day it celebrates. And unlike so many other presents, the real gift isn't the book itself, it's the simple, pure message. If you give anything this year, give love."
--Jason F. Wright, New York Times best-selling author of Christmas Jars

In this adaptation of "Christmas Day in the Morning" Rob looks back on his boyhood and remembers giving an unusual gift of self a gift that filled him with Christmas joy. Now, fifty years later, Rob realizes he can still give a gift from his heart.

The original Pearl S. Buck story, published in Collier s magazine in 1955, concludes with the older Rob writing a letter of gratitude and love to his wife. As he does, Christmas joy is awakened in him once again.

The final pages of this book provide a place for you to write your own letter of gratitude and love a letter that will naturally be included when you give this book to a family member, neighbor, or friend. As you do, you may experience what Rob learned as a boy, and then again as a man: the gifts most likely to rekindle Christmas joy are not just the presents we give with our hands, but the gratitude we express from our hearts.

About the Author

Pearl S. Buck wrote Christmas Day in the Morning in 1955. She was a prolific author and earned a Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Good Earth. The daughter of Christian missionaries, Buck spent most of her life before 1934 in China. Upon her return to the United States in 1935, she became an advocate for women’s rights and racial equality.

David Warner received his PhD in theatre and film from Brigham Young University and has worked with the Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra on Temple Square for more than a decade.

Georgana’s Secret by Arlem Hawks

18 Nov, 2020 by in historical fiction, proper romance, Shadow Mountain Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Georgana’s Secret by Arlem Hawks

Georgana's Secret

on January 12, 2021
Pages: 320
Format: ARC
four-stars
Buy the BookGoodreads
A Regency romance on the high seas.

1811, HMS Deborah

Georgana Woodall dreams of freedom—freedom from her past and freedom from her secret. She has been living on her father’s ship for years, disguised as a cabin boy named “George.” But hiding her true self is becoming more difficult, and she yearns to break free of her life on the sea.

Lieutenant Dominic Peyton has no time in his life for love, not with his dedication to His Majesty’s Royal Navy claiming his full attention. Determined to prove himself to his new captain, he strives to be an exemplary officer and leader. When he sees the captain’s cabin boy being harassed by the crew, he immediately puts a stop to it and takes the boy under his wing.

Georgana quickly loses her heart to Dominic’s compassion and care, but needing to maintain her disguise as a cabin boy, she is convinced nothing can come of her affection.

Georgana’s Secret is about two hearts yearning to find a safe harbor, and possibly, a lasting love.

Review

So much to love about Georgana’s Secret. I finished it in one day! Naval Historical Fiction, with a touch of romance. Georgana is aboard her father’s ship disguised as a boy, George Taylor. Sea life is hard, disappointing and dangerous. She has lived a life of abuse feeling she is a mistake and a failure. Along comes Dominic. Completely unaware of who she is, gentle and kind to the orphaned ship mate.

This one has a slow moving pace, until the very end, when the action of battle really picks up. There were a few plot pieces which felt a bit off– like her father’s treatment of her, at times, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the rest. There are true to life details which make this feel like a trip back in time between Naval officers in the midst of war. Loved it and can’t wait to read more from the author. Thanks Shadow Mountain for the sneak peek.

Content: drinking, bullying, abuse. Moderate violence, Clean.

About the Author

Arlem Hawks began making up stories before she could write. Living all over the Western United States and traveling around the world gave her a love of cultures and people, and the stories they have to tell. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in communications and emphasis in print journalism, and now lives in Arizona with her husband and two children

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Love and Olives by Jenna Evans Welch

17 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Love and Olives by Jenna Evans Welch

Love and Olives

on November 10, 2020
Pages: 512
Format: ARC
four-half-stars
Buy the Book
Liv Varanakis doesn’t have a lot of fond memories of her father, which makes sense—he fled to Greece when she was only eight. What Liv does remember, though, is their shared love for Greek myths and the lost city of Atlantis. So when Liv suddenly receives a postcard from her father explaining that National Geographic is funding a documentary about his theories on Atlantis—and will she fly out to Greece and help?—Liv jumps at the opportunity.

But when she arrives to gorgeous Santorini, things are a little…awkward. There are so many questions, so many emotions that flood to the surface after seeing her father for the first time in years. And yet Liv doesn’t want their past to get in the way of a possible reconciliation. She also definitely doesn’t want Theo—her father’s charismatic so-called “protégé”—to witness her struggle.

And that means diving into all that Santorini has to offer—the beautiful sunsets, the turquoise water, the hidden caves, and the delicious cuisine. But not everything on the Greek island is as perfect as it seems. Because as Liv slowly begins to discover, her father may not have invited her to Greece for Atlantis, but for something much more important.

When I found out the Author of Love and Gelato had another book out, I had to read it! What a beautiful story of resilience, recovery and chasing one’s dreams. At over 500 pages, I plowed right through without a second thought. Set in magical Santorini, Greece, I was swept away.

Liv’s father is an Atlantis seeker, searching the world over for the lost city, Liv is left behind. When an invitation comes in her senior year to join him, she resists. My goodness, I loved this book! It was a refreshing, clean YA read which explores the intricacies of life. Theo is spunky and unpredictable, his mother a jewel. I laughed and cried, then went online to order Love & Luck. Thanks so much to Simon & Schuster for the advance copy. One of my favorites this year.

Content: mental illness, sneaking out and sleeping in same room as a boy, smoking. No violence. Clean read.

About the Author

Jenna Evans Welch was the kind of insatiable child reader who had no choice but to grow up to become a writer. She is the New York Times bestselling author of Love & GelatoLove & Luck, and Love & Olives. When she isn’t writing girl abroad stories, Jenna can be found chasing her children or making elaborate messes in the kitchen. She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and two young children. Visit her online at JennaEvansWelch.com.

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The Santa Box Blog Tour

16 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

The Santa Box

Cami Carver (Actor), Shawn Stevens (Actor), Spanky Ward (Director)

Rated: NR

Format: DVD

Release date : November 10, 2020

Amazon

For 12-year-old Kallie Watts, Christmas is anything but merry. For the last five years, the tinsel-strewn holiday has spelled disaster for her family, so when an apartment fire leaves Kallie and her widowed mother homeless just in time for the holidays, it comes as no surprise. There’s only one logical conclusion: Kallie is cursed by Christmas. When her mother finds a new job in a small California town, Kallie steps out of the moving van and into her worst nightmare: a real-life version of “Whoville,” overflowing with holiday decorations and brimming with Christmas cheer. Forced to navigate the complicated ins and outs of her jolly new surroundings, Kallie is shaken out of her gloom one day when she discovers an ornately carved wooden Santa box on the porch, addressed to her. The moment she lifts the lid, Kallie’s life is changed forever as she rediscovers the true magic and meaning of Christmas…

Review

The Santa Box had a rocky start in our family with the over the top mom and daughter bully duo, but toward the middle of the show our family was engaged and watching the real story unfold. It has a beautiful story of selfless love and giving a well as forgiveness and hope. We were crying near the end! Perfect for a family Christmas movie with a tender message.

Content: bullying, mention of parent death

Movie Trailer

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