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Book review - Cinder Bella ('Tis the Season Book 3) by Kathleen Shoop
She never had anything.
He lost everything.
Together they create a Christmas to remember.
December, 1893--Shadyside, Pennyslvania .
"A heartwarming story that will have you overflowing with festive spirit. Kathleen's heartfelt story transports you back in time to a harsh winter in Pennyslvania, in the midst of a financial crash, and depression, that serves as a reminder that the magic of Christmas can be felt, regardless of what you have in life. Bella is the centre of the story, her positive love of everything in life is quite contagious, and is joined by a group of people from all walks of life who find themselves in dire need of help and support, they have absolutely nothing yet have everything they could have wanted.
Bella asks does riches in life involve money, are they important? I think you will find the answer among these pages, for sure!"
Our rating 'A heartwarming' 5 stars
Bella Darling lives in a cozy barn at Maple Grove, an estate owned by industrialist Archibald Westminster. The Westminster family is stranded overseas and have sent word to relieve all employees of their duties except Margaret, the pregnant maid, James the butler, and Bella. Content with borrowed books and a toasty home festooned with pine boughs and cinnamon sticks, she coaxes the old hens to lay eggs--extraordinary eggs. Bella yearns for just one thing—someone to share her life with. Always inventive, she has a plan for that. She just needs the right egg into the hands of the right man.
Bartholomew Baines, a Harvard-educated banker, is reeling in the aftermath of his bank's collapse. With his friends and fiancé ostracizing him for what he thought was an act of generosity, he is penniless and alone. A kind woman welcomes him into her boarding house under conditions that he reluctantly accepts. Completely undone by his current, lowly position, and by the motley crew of fellow boarders who view him as one of them, Bartholomew wrestles with how to rebuild.
With the special eggs as the impetus, the first meeting between Bella and Bartholomew gives each the wrong idea about the other. And when the boarding house burns down a week before Christmas it’s Bella who is there to lend a hand. She, Margaret, and James invite the homeless group to stay at the estate through the holidays. But as Christmas draws closer, eviction papers arrive. Maple Grove is being foreclosed upon. Can Bella work her magic and save their Christmas? Is the growing attraction between Bella and Bartholomew enough for them to see past their differences? Only time will tell and only if time doesn’t run out before they all have the Christmas of their lives.