Thursday, October 8, 2020

Christmas Book Review: The Christmas Table: A Novel by Donna VanLiere

Book Description:
In June 1972, John Creighton determines to build his wife Joan a kitchen table. His largest project to date had been picture frames but he promises to have the table ready for Thanksgiving dinner. Inspired to put something delicious on the table, Joan turns to her mother’s recipes she had given to Joan when she and John married.

In June 2012, Lauren Mabrey discovers she’s pregnant. Gloria, Miriam, and the rest of her friends at Glory’s Place begin to pitch in, helping Lauren prepare their home for the baby. On a visit to the local furniture builder, Lauren finds a table that he bought at a garage sale but has recently refinished. Once home, a drawer is discovered under the table which contains a stack of recipe cards. Growing up in one foster home after another, Lauren never learned to cook and is fascinated as she reads through the cards. Personal notes have been written on each one from the mother to her daughter and time and again Lauren wonders where they lived, when they lived, and in a strange way, she feels connected to this mother and her daughter and wants to make the mother proud.

The story continues to from 1972 to 2012 as Joan battles breast cancer and Lauren learns to cook, preparing for the baby’s arrival. As Christmas nears, can Lauren unlock the mystery of the table, and find the peace she's always longed for?

My Review:
The Christmas Table
is a lovely holiday story that will fill your heart with joy and hope. Donna VanLiere did a great job with the time slip between 1972 and 2012. I enjoyed reading about Joan and Lauren learning to cook and the stories behind the recipes. Joan's story touched my heart as her husband, John, poured his love for her into building her a kitchen table. I love that Lauren, with great determination, sought out a significant piece to an important puzzle. The folks who work at Glory's Place are delightfully funny and caring. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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