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Customer Reviews for Thomas Nelson The Christmas Note

Thomas Nelson The Christmas Note

Gretchen McCray has recently moved into an apartment with her two children to be closer to her mother, Miriam. She and her children are building a life together in a new community when a mysterious young woman, Melissa Summit, moves into the apartment next to them. She has few possessions, little personality, and keeps to herself.

One day, a local landlord who is looking for Melissa knocks on Gretchen's door for assistance. Melissa's mother has died and in the coming weeks the landlord needs Melissa to empty her mother's apartment. Gretchen reaches out and offers to help, but the apartment is a gut-wrenching shamble of a home.

There is little worth saving except for a few photos and a note that is discovered on the crate beside the bed. It is unfinished but in the two scribbled lines, Melissa discovers she has a brother and a sister that she never knew about. Even more shocking, she begins to uncover family secrets that show her who she really is. Can two very different women embark on a journey that explores a long-buried need for forgiveness, hope, and redemption?

Average Customer Rating:
4.692 out of 5
4.7
 out of 
5
(13 Reviews) 13
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Rating Snapshot (13 reviews)
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13 out of 13100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for The Christmas Note
Review 1 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Enjoyable Read at Christmas Time

Date:April 18, 2012
Customer Avatar
Vanessa of HHCreations
Location:Pennsylvania
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
The Christmas Note by Donna VanLiere, is a delightful little read for not just the Christmas season, but for anytime during the year.
Here is the book’s description:
"From the author of The Christmas Shoes comes a new inspirational novel about an unlikely friendship between two women, but one that will change each of their lives forever.
Gretchen McCray has recently moved into an apartment with her two children to be closer to her mother, Miriam. She and her children are building a life together in a new community when a mysterious young woman, Melissa Summit, moves into the apartment next to them. She has few possessions, little personality, and keeps to herself.
One day, a local landlord who is looking for Melissa knocks on Gretchen’s door for assistance. Melissa’s mother has died and in the coming weeks the landlord needs Melissa to empty her mother’s apartment. Gretchen reaches out and offers to help, but the apartment is a gut-wrenching shamble of a home.
There is little worth saving except for a few photos and a note that is discovered on the crate beside the bed. It is unfinished but in the two scribbled lines, Melissa discovers she has a brother and a sister that she never knew about. Even more shocking, she begins to uncover family secrets that show her who she really is.
Can two very different women embark on a journey that explores a long-buried need for forgiveness, hope, and redemption?"
I found this book to be a nice, easy read and enjoyed the ending the best. I wouldn’t recommend this book to everyone, only because at times it seemed to drag on a bit. I think the author was mainly able to keep my interest via the writing the story through the eyes of either Melissa or Gretchen with each new chapter. After sticking with it and reading this book over the course of a few evenings while relaxing with a nice cup of tea, some of the - what others might consider to be - ”boring” details showed their significance once the story came to a close. If you are stuck in the house due to a snow fall and want to curl up with something to read and a cup of something warm to drink, I would recommend this book. If you are looking for something that will keep you on edge with the constant questioning of “what’s going to happen next?” — then I suggest you read something else. Otherwise, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest, I give this book either a 6 or a 7.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 2 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 6, 2012
Customer Avatar
cyndidd
Location:Troy, MO
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Melissa's mother dies, leaving her with a messy apartment to clean, a life full of rotten memories, and a note. That single note leads her to find that she is not alone, as she once thought. Instead, her life, her existence, her thread in the tapestry of life is connected to two others, a brother and a sister. With the help and support of her neighbor Gretchen, Melissa sets out on a journey to find her siblings and ends up finding herself as well.
I had a hard time getting into this book. The story line is something I cannot relate to. But, I did enjoy it, once I got through the first couple chapters. The author switches from Melissa to Gretchen, telling the story from both woman's perspectives. I like this style of writing, as it gives the reader a variety of responses to the same situations.
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Review 3 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Highly recommend to all

Date:January 31, 2012
Customer Avatar
D Haak
Location:Illinois
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Immediately passed it on to family and friends. The Author is a favorite of mine as I have read her previously. Recommend to all!
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Review 4 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

I enjoyed this book

Date:November 23, 2011
Customer Avatar
joyfulnana
Location:Coal Township, Pa.
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This is the story about a mother of two children, Gretchen Daniels, who moved into a condo to be nearer to her elderly mother. Just as they are getting settled in a knock is at the door. The man is looking for Gretchen's neighbor Melissa McCreary. He leaves a message with Gretchen to tell Melissa that her mother has died and she needs to clear out her apartment. Gretchen delivers the message and Melissa is not tearful about the news. Melissa did not have a very good relationship with her mother and Gretchen feels sorry for Melissa and offers to help her with her mothers apartment.
A short time latter Melissa calls on Gretchen to help with the apartment. The apartment is a mess and it doesn't seem as if there is anything of value there but a few photos and a note that Melissa will find helpful in discovering answers to her family.
Gretchen has a good relationship with her mother and she also tries to become a friend to Melissa. She invites Melissa over to her house and tries to make her feel like part of her family.
Can these two women who are so different find it in theirs hearts to forgive and find hope and trust.
This was a good book I enjoyed reading it. DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255
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Review 5 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Date:November 10, 2011
Customer Avatar
Ruth
Location:Upstate SC
Gender:female
Meets Expectations: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Not much to add to the other reviews. I liked the Christmas Shoes and sequel. The next one ... and this one? It's hard to say what really bothers me about this book. It's an enjoyable read but a perturbing scenario. No doubt this happens in real life as well, but what a bummer for the 'children' who were thrown away. Melissa's turn-around attitude surprised me - it seemed sudden, snap-of-the-finger? (Yeah, I took that expression straight from the book though out of context.)
For some reason this book seems to throw in some Christianity as an afterthought. Or could Ms. VanLiere be wanting to broaden the market: Appeal to those who usually would not read Christian fiction?
It's o k but I am still undecided if I want to put this story with my keepers, with re-reads, or just give it away.
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Review 6 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Great Christmas Read

Date:November 6, 2011
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Mama Kucing
Location:Malaysia
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Gretchen Daniel with her two children, Emma and Ethan, moved into a new apartment building in Grandon to be nearer to her elderly divorce mom.
Just as they were settling down and unboxing, there was an unexpected knock on the door. The stranger was looking for her neighbour, Mellisa McCreary, is said to be Mellisa mother's Landlord. Unfortunately, Melissa was not around.
In view of that, the Landlord left a message with Gretchen to inform Mellisa that her mother Ramona had pass away. Mellisa is expected to clear her mother's apartment. This makes Gretchen felt obliged to offer a helping hand in clearing the apartment.
When Melissa got the news, she was not tearful. Her relationship with her mother at its best can be said as rocky. She blames her mother for it.
The apartment was like a disaster area. Most of the things in it were junk. Nothing of value exept for a few photographs and a note. It's just scribble with two lines. It was a real surprise for Melissa to find that she have siblings that she didn't know about.
This is an interesting book. It's being told in the voice of Gretchen and Melissa. At times, I feel rather irritated by Gretchen's interfering ways although she had meant kind and helpful.
The characters are well developed and love the plot. The unexpected twists in the plot kept me intrigue and kept the pages turning.
It's a good gift for Christmas. Very heart warming.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 7 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent book

Date:November 1, 2011
Customer Avatar
ramblings
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I just love all the heart warming stories about Christmas time. I was recently able to review the book “The Christmas Note” by Donna VanLiere. She is the author of the book “The Christmas Shoes”. I greatly enjoyed that book and the subsequent movie and song as well. So I was greatly anticipating “The Christmas Note”. The book revolves around two main characters; reclusive and socially awkward Melissa and extroverted almost pushy Gretchen. From the first page you are drawn in. You can tell secrets are lurking and you want, or need, to discover them. The plot unfolds rather predictably but with several unique twists thrown in as well. When the book ended I was sad to close the chapter on this set of characters. I immediately passed the book onto to my mom for her to enjoy as well. This would be a great read any time of the year, but extra special to enjoy this Holiday season!
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Review 8 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

The Christmas Note -- A Heartwarming Story

Date:October 24, 2011
Customer Avatar
Pam Burke
Location:Potosi, MO
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
The Christmas Note is the latest of Donna VanLiere's heartwarming (and sometimes heartbreaking) Christmas stories, and it was another great one! Her previous books include The Christmas Shoes, The Christmas Blessing, and The Christmas Hope.
Gretchen Daniels and her two young children move to Grandon to be near her mother after her husband, Kyle, is the victim of a tragic miltary incident in Afghanistan. Living in the condo next door is Melissa McCreary, who seems to have no desire to make any connection with her new neighbors. When Gretchen is asked to pass on a message to Melissa concerning her mother's death, she really has no desire to get involved. Somewhat reluctantly, though, Gretchen finds herself driven by Kyle's "voice" to reach out to Melissa. The discovery of a note that Melissa's mother started, but never finished, sets off a search for a brother and sister Melissa never knew she had. Neither Melissa nor Gretchen has any idea of the twists and turns they will face as their lives become more intertwined.
Ms. VanLiere skillfully drew me into the thoughts and actions of her characters. I came to care about each one and anxiously awaited the resolution of their troubles and challenges. Some of the elements of the plot were predictable, but others caught me by surprise. I would recommend that you spend the couple of hours or so that it takes to read this story of Christmas miracles, forgiveness, and restoration.
This book was provided free from Book Sneeze for my honest review.
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Review 9 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

heartwarming story of forgiveness, hope, redemptio

Date:October 22, 2011
Customer Avatar
HS Mom of 4
Location:Georgia, USA
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I just finished my first book of the Christmas season, The Christmas Note by Donna VanLiere. What a wonderful, uplifting story to usher in the Advent season!
Gretchen Daniels and her two young children have just moved into a condo near her mother to build a new life for her and her family. On her second day in her new home, a wearied and impatient man knocks on her door looking for the daughter of one of his apartment tenants who has died. He leaves the information with Gretchen and leaves it to her to break the news to Melissa, her quiet and timid single neighbor, that she has one week to clean out her mother's apartment.
Gretchen offers to help Melissa clean out her mother's apartment. As they work side-by-side, Gretchen finds a note written to Melissa. A note that will change her life forever. As she tries to make sense of the incomplete note and its implications, Melissa only remembers her mother's drinking and carousing nature during her growing up years. What could her mom offer to her.... after her passing?
An unlikely friendship forms between the two women as they encourage each other through life's challenges. Just as Melissa lives alone and always keeps to herself, Gretchen is awaiting the time when her wounded soldier/husband is able to return home. He was critically injured on September 15th in a bomb blast in Afghanistan while playing kickball with the local children.
Click HERE to reach Chapter 1 and 2!
This is a story of forgiveness, hope, and redemption. I loved how Donna weaves God's faithfulness through the storyline... Melissa's loving neighbor when she was a child, Mrs. Schweiger's daily prayers for her, and Gretchen's willingness to "come alongside" her during her darkest days.
This is a wonderful book to remind each of us to really 'see' our neighbor and to walk with those around us through their valleys and rejoice with them on the hilltops. At first I was taken aback by how Donna VanLiere wrote each chapter from the point of view of either Gretchen or Melissa. As I continued reading, I loved the way that each chapter gave you and insight into their thoughts, feelings, and motivations of each person. Just like an aside in theater, it drew me into the story... these are not just characters in a book, but "friends" you can relate to.
The Christmas Note is the newest edition in the Christmas Hope Series. For other books in the series, click here. I am looking forward to reading them all!
My rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
I received a complimentary copy of The Christmas Note Thomas Nelson Publishers
and the BookSneeze program for my honest review.
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Review 10 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great Book!

Date:October 20, 2011
The Christmas Note is a heartwarming story about the friendship between two very different women, Gretchen and Melissa. Gretchen’s husband serves in the military and is recovering in Germany from an injury. Gretchen, left to parent two children on her own, decides it would be best to move closer to her mother. While moving Gretchen and her children meet their next store neighbor, Melissa. Melissa is not very personable and it is evident that she likes to keep to herself. One day Gretchen receives an unexpected visitor from a landlord. He informs her that Melissa’s mother has passed away and the apartment needs to be cleaned out. As Gretchen gives Melissa the news she also offers to help her clean out her mother’s apartment. The journey for this unlikely pair begins as they discover a note while cleaning out the apartment.
The Christmas Note is part of the Christmas Hope series authored by Donna VanLiere. This is the first book that I have read in the series and must say that I loved it! It is a story of faith, hope and the reassurance that God is in control of lives. I would definitely recommend this book to others.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 11 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Another Hit by Donna VanLiere

Date:October 18, 2011
Customer Avatar
mom3ways
Location:Greenfield, IN
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
One thing I look forward to every Christmas season is the newest Donna VanLiere book. This lady knows how to write a story. Her books are easy to read and always have a few twists in the plot. Just when you think you know how the book is going to end, she throws in a surprise.
Can two very different women embark on a journey that explores a long-buried need for forgiveness, hope, and redemption?
That question gets answered as the lives of these two woman unfold and intertwine. This book explores how just a little attention can make a huge difference in someone's life. One of the main characters describes herself like this:
~"I've always felt there are two women inside me: one who is desperate, drowning, and clinging to anything that can float and the other woman who feels the depth of loss and the hope of beauty and is always searching for the marvelous to spring up out of the gray. That woman rarely shows up, it seems."
It is this character who ends up full of hope and forgiveness. What a powerful lesson this book teaches us, not just for Christmas, but for everyday life!
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Review 12 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fantastic Christmas Fiction!

Date:October 13, 2011
Customer Avatar
Tammy G.
Location:East Texas
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It's THAT time of year! The time of year that I begin reading Christmas stories. Why?!?! You, may, ask? Simply because I can't read all the great stories before Christmas and these great reads get me into the holiday mood.
So, this year I'm beginning with a new to me author, Donna VanLiere. Actually, last year someone told me what a grand read The Christmas Hope was to them. But I missed that read.
I absolutely love the cover of this book and so I began reading. Gretchen Daniels lives with her two children in an apartment, trying to restart her life but yet give her children the joy and stability they need. Their neighbor, Melissa, moves next door.
Melissa is quite closed mouth, rather shy and barely meets a person's eyes as she passes. Gretchen doesn't know what to think of this new neighbor but feels compassion for her.
One day Melissa is gone and a local landlord comes to Melissa's apartment-she is out, so he stops at Gretchen's place to leave a message for Melissa.
This is where the story takes heart. Melissa's mom has passed away and she must go clean the place out. Gretchen offers to help Melissa and together they enter Melissa's mother's abode. Not much to salvage but there is a note that changes everything!
The reader is captured by the feelings that overcome Gretchen and Melissa. Seemingly two opposite peoples, yet so alike!
A fantastically, heart warming, great.to.start.the.holiday.season.read!
So glad I chose this as my first holiday read! Don't miss this story of forgiveness, love and friendship.
Isn't this what the Christmas spirit is all about?
Don't miss this great Christmas read!
*This book was provided review by BookSneeze/Thomas Nelson Publishing*
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Review 13 for The Christmas Note
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fantastic!

Date:October 12, 2011
Customer Avatar
Tracy
Location:Canada
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I love these type of books, Heartwarming stories that seem to bring out the best in people, and it's perfect for the Christmas season!
The book focuses around Gretchen McCray and a young woman name Melissa, Gretchen moves into an apartment complex to be close to her elderly mother and meets her new neighbor Melissa, who seem either uncaring or horribly shy! After Melissa's mother passes away Gretchen offers to help her clean out the apartment, but no one is prepared for what happens next!!
While the book is a really heart warming book, I also enjoyed that it had bits of suspense and mystery! The writing was well done and the book had a great flow! I would highly recommend this book!!
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