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Book Review: Santa's Countdown to Christmas, 24 Days of Stories by Kim Thompson, Illustrated by Elodie Duhameau

Santa's Countdown to Christmas by Kim Thompson, Illustrated by Elodie Duhameau was published on October 2, 2017 and is a book format of an advent calendar.  Told from the perspective of Santa Claus, the storyline chronicles what Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, the elves, and the reindeer do in preparation of Christmas on each day of December leading up to Christmas Day. I'd like to thank NetGalley and Crackboom! Books for giving me a copy of Santa's Countdown to Christmas in exchange for my honest review.  I was thrilled to be approved to read this book because I love Christmas and am a kid at heart. This picture book was well written and engaging.  The illustrations were phenomenal as well.  I even enjoyed reading it as an adult.  I wish I had kids of my own so I could buy it for them, but I guess I'll have to settle for buying it for family members and friends who have kids that believe in Santa Claus.  I'd recommend this book for babies through eight years old.  Reading

Book Review: The Family Game by Catherine Steadman

Book Review The Family Game by Catherine Steadman

The Family Game by Catherine Steadman is a novel about a rich, eccentric family and traditions that may be deadly.  Harriet "Harry" Reed, a novelist, and her fiance Edward Holbeck are in love.  Edward's estranged family wants Harry's help in bringing back into the folds of their family, but when their strange family traditions make Harry uneasy, she starts to rethink her decision.

A big shout out and thank you to NetGalley, Random House Publishing Group, and Ballatine Books for the Advanced Readers Copy (ARC) of The Family Game by Catherine Steadman.  I requested to review this book because of the cover art and the synopsis.  To say I was excited to be approved to receive this book for free in exchange for my honest review would be an understatement.

This was the perfect book to put me in the mood for Halloween even though the majority of the book takes place in November and December.  An intense, dark book, the first quarter of the novel was a bit slow but quickly picked up from there.  There were twists and turns galore, and I didn't see the ending coming at all.

One of the traditions of the family is a game brought over from their homeland of Germany called Krampusnacht and included Krampus, the evil shadow of Santa Claus, chasing children throughout the house until one of the kids found the special stick that would "kill" Krampus.  Harry and one other adult were pulled into the game to help the youngest two children in the game.  I found my heart pounding during this scene . . . it was that scary!!  I think what made it so scary to me is that I had watched a horror movie a few years ago about Krampus and knew how scary this creature could be.

All in all, I absolutely loved The Family Game by Catherine Steadman and gave it five out of five stars.  I highly recommend this book, especially if you love the horror genre.

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