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Customer Reviews for Abingdon Press The Christmas Star

Abingdon Press The Christmas Star

Robert Reed gave his life for his country in the early days of World War II. His sacrificed was honored when his widow and son were presented with the Congressional Medal of Honor. Each Christmas the final decoration Madge Reed hangs on the family's tree is that medal. Rather than being a symbol of honor for young Jimmy Reed that shining star represents loss, pain, and suffering.

Yet a letter delivered by one of Robert's fellow soldiers and a mystery posed in that letter put a father's sacrifice and faith into perspective and bring new meaning to not just the star hanging on the Christmas tree but the events of the very first Christmas. Then, when least expected, a Christmas miracle turns a final bit of holiday sadness into a joy that the boy has never known.

Average Customer Rating:
4.615 out of 5
4.6
 out of 
5
(13 Reviews) 13
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Rating Snapshot (13 reviews)
5 stars
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13 out of 13100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for The Christmas Star
Review 1 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A perfect name for this story...

Date:January 13, 2014
Customer Avatar
Jen Pen
Location:Midwest
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
SUMMARY:
For Jimmy Reed things have changed…life has become harder, he is angry at the world and he has no interest in Christmas…ever since his father gave his life for his country. While his mother puts up the Congressional Medal of Honor atop the tree each Christmas to remind herself of his bravery, all Jimmy can see is anger and betrayal. His father’s fellow soldiers, a mystery letter, an unexpected failed plan and mentoring all give Jimmy hope, as well as a refreshed look at life and events.
A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
The Christmas Star was very appropriately named, not only for the physical medal but what it all represented. Taking place during WWII, this story is also relevant today with all the families involved in loved ones missing Christmas. I enjoyed watching Jimmy work through his feelings/thoughts/ actions while finally coming to terms and accepting events of life. Jimmy learned the life lesson of giving which should be so prevalent at Christmas time (as well as throughout the year). Per his biography, Ace Collins is a very successful author whose books I will definitely consider reading in the future.
RATING:
4 (out of 5) pennies
*I received a complimentary copy of The Christmas Star from Abingdon Press for my honest review*
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Review 2 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Good Read for Anytime of the year

Date:December 15, 2013
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detweilermom
Location:Lancaster, Pa
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
This is the kind of book that I like to read around the holidays. Jimmy is a young man that is hurting (just like many people hurt around the holidays when they lose their loved ones). Jimmy makes a few bad decisions when he thinks that these decisions will help with how he is feeling but when he learns how his father really dies and when he reads a letter written by his dad it helps him to have a truly Christmas Miracle.
This is a great story for this time of the year but also for any time of the year.
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Review 3 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A Beautiful Illustration of Hope and Faith!

Date:December 12, 2013
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Britney Adams
As you open the pages of The Christmas Star, you will be swept back in time to the December of 1945. Ace Collins captures the essence of days gone by with his wonderful use of nostalgic details and descriptions. This is a captivating tale that is sure to be enjoyed this holiday season!
While the small town of Ash Flat, Arkansas gears up to celebrate the first Christmas after the war, Jimmy Reed is feeling less that celebratory. Embittered by the loss of his father, Jimmy begins to run with wrong crowd and soon finds himself in a situation beyond his control.
However, the events that transpire are a beautiful illustration of hope and faith. The Christmas Star is a touching story that will warm your heart. I encourage you all to read this special book!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Abingdon Press. All thoughts expressed are my own and no monetary compensation was received.
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Review 4 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Wonderful example of Hope and courage.

Date:December 10, 2013
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DonnasBookshelf
Location:Tennessee
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
When I began reading The Christmas Star, I wondered what sort of story is was… I mean, Christmas is supposed to represent family, love, peace, joy, happiness…
Maybe so… but not many books are written about a happy, joyful season. Instead we read about a young boy desperately trying to raise money to buy his mother a special gift before she dies… on Christmas Eve. Another story is It’s A Wonderful Life, where George (our hero) is contemplating suicide.
These stories don’t represent the lives we wish we lived, they represent the lives we find ourselves living – illness, death, bankruptcy, war – but somehow we survive, usually a little stronger than we were before.
Christmas is a time of hope… hope for the future, hope for the joy and happiness we search for all year.
This story is a wonderful example of how a young man copes with the loss of his dad at Christmas time…
Young Jimmy begins to rebel after the death of his dad, but with the love of his mom and the support of his community, he just might find a little hope… enough to make the right choice.
I don’t want to give away anything else, so I’ll let you read the book for yourself. Read it. You’ll be blessed.
I received this book free in exchange for an honest review from Abingdon Press.
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Review 5 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A heartwarming story at Christmas

Date:December 4, 2013
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bookwomanjoan
Location:Oak Harbor, WA
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 a delightful historical novel to read at the Christmas season.
It's a few days before Christmas, 1945. Jimmy Reed and his mom are going to have to celebrate Christmas alone. Jimmy's dad had been killed in the early days of World War II. Jimmy struggles with the loss, pain and anger. His work in high school is falling. He's beginning to run with the wrong crowd.
By God's grace there are people in Jimmy's life who try to help him get on the right path. Like the school bus driver who has hardly anything to his name yet so freely gives what he does have. And then a fellow soldier stops by to tell Jimmy of his father's heroic actions.
Jimmy begins to realize the true meaning of Christmas and the real sacrifice his father made. But Jimmy has made some bad decisions. Is there any way he can get his life back before it is too late?
This is a great Christmas story, complete with a miracle at the end. Collins is at the top of his form with this novel. The characters are so real you feel like you know them. The small town of Ash Flat, Arkansas is brought to life through the wonderful people living there. Reading this novel was like taking a journey back in time to a simpler place, a place where people cared for each other and helped each other out. A truly heartwarming story.
Discussion questions at the back make this a great choice for a teen reading group.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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Review 6 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 3, 2013
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lcjohnson1988
Location:Indiana
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
Do you like to give or to receive presents? Or do you like to both give and receive? Books are like presents as they are given by the author, and the audience receives the joy of what is in between the covers. So too the author receives as readers share their books with others, and the story inside just keeps on giving as it goes on to the next person.
Ace Collins is a very gifted writer who crafts tales that entertain, encourage and enrapture the heart of those who make time to enjoy reading them. We are very blessed when we remember those who have gone before us to lay down their lives for freedom, not just physical freedom, but spiritual freedom as well. In these pages, we are told of a father who goes overseas to serve during World War II, promising he will come home. On night the military shows up with a telegram, and then later the family is presented the Congressional Medal of Honor. Jimmy is struggling still with losing his father a couple of years after his father left home. Nothing about Christmas brings him hope anymore.
A few men and another school chum of Jimmy’s come together to make plans that would change all their futures for the better. However, what else transpires through the next couple of days begins to challenge Jimmy and bring him to a fork in the road of his life where he must choose a path.
With all that is happening in the world today, it would be easy to lose hope and focus in the Lord. While this is a fictional piece of work, what is inside will encourage and remind you of the hope that never wavers if it is based on the Lord. I fell in love with the novel the minute I started reading, and enthusiasm grew with each additional twist and turn of the plot.
Don’t miss the opportunity to read and share the book with others this holiday season!
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Review 7 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A Christmas Miracle!

Date:December 31, 2012
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Judy K Burgi
Location:Kendallville, IN
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 Star is the first book I have read by Ace Collins and it won't be the last. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and gave it the 5 stars it deserves.
There is a huge message of love, forgiveness, faith and hope in this wonderful story. Jimmy Reed learns about all of them. He learns that no matter how angry he is, how bleak the circumstances are and how hopeless things appear they don't have to stay that way.
I highly recommend this book to everyone. I promise you will not be disappointed. I just finished this book and I am feeling good! Thank you Ace Collins!
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Review 8 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

The Christmas Star is a Search for Hope.

Date:November 27, 2012
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Blooming with Books
Location:Bloomer, WI
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
The Christmas Star
By Ace Collins
Jimmy Reed is angry - angry at God, angry at Christmas. But in his opinion his anger is justified, after all his father was killed in action and everyone else's is coming home.
Three years ago Robert Reed was killed in the Philippines Since then life has lost something for Jimmy and Christmas is just a reminder of what he has lost. But this year, Jimmy is going to get even with Christmas, if only he can remember to forget who his father was.
But friends are reaching out to Jimmy, teaching him about the man his father was. But Jimmy made a choice and is now regretting his rash decision. Jimmy doesn't know who to turn to or how to get himself out this mess that he has become entangled in.
When Jimmy discovers an old letter from his father his life is about to change. But will he allow a message, written years ago, to heal his heart or will it drive him further into despair?
But Robert Reed's life touched more people than Jimmy ever realized. Two days before Christmas a solider tells Jimmy a different story about how his father died. Robert died trying to save kids from Japanese bombers.
Christmas 1945 is one that Jimmy won't soon forget as he rediscovers hope! The Christmas Star is a story that will touch your heart. You will hurt with Jimmy as he struggles to come to terms with who he is and who he wants to become. The Christmas Star will warm your heart and give you hope as Christmas comes to Ash Flats and the Reed household.
I received a copy of this title for the purpose of this review, but all opinions expressed are my own.
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Review 9 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

The Christmas Star

Date:November 26, 2012
Customer Avatar
MaureenT
Location:Syracuse NY
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Some really good Christian points are brought out in this story. Dealing with the aftermath of his fathers death, Jimmy, is struggling. He is one angry boy and getting into trouble.
Love how Calvin, his school bus driver, is sent at just the right time to meet Jimmy. What a man, who is living his faith. We also travel with Jimmy as he decides to help a group of thieves rob his Mother's boss.
We wonder what is going to happen to this family. Did enjoy the discovery in the family Bible.
What I really had a hard time with was the ending. It was very unbelievable and was not really explained at all.
This is a cute Christmas read that shows some really great Holiday Spirit.
I received this book from the Publisher Abingdon Press, and Pump Your Book Virtual Tours, and was not required to give a positive review.
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Review 10 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

World War II, Emotional Trauma, Healing & Friendsh

Date:November 17, 2012
Customer Avatar
VicsMediaRoom
Location:Irvine, CA
Age:55-65
Gender:male
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
Ace Collins in his new book, “The Christmas Star” published by Abingdon Press takes us into the life of Jimmy Reed.
From the back cover: Can the broken heart of a child be healed by an unexpected Christmas letter?
Robert Reed gave his life for his country in the early days of World War II. His sacrifice was honored when his widow and son were presented with the Congressional Medal of Honor. Each Christmas, the final decoration Marge Reed hangs on the family’s tree is that medal. Rather than being a symbol of honor for young Jimmy Reed that shining star represents loss, pain, and suffering.
Yet a message delivered by one of Robert’s fellow soldiers and a mystery letter found in a Bible put a father’s sacrifice and faith into perspective and bring new meaning to not just the star hanging on the Christmas tree but the events of the very first Christmas. Then, when least expected, a Christmas miracle turns a final bit of holiday sadness into a joy that Jimmy has never known.
Ace Collins seems to understand the trauma you receive when you are a teenage boy and your father dies. It seems your whole world dies with you. And you have no idea of how to deal with that pain so you lash out at the world and that only gets you into trouble. That is exactly what is happening to Jimmy Reed. It’s been three years since his father died in World War II and he is not improving. However there are individuals in his life who want to see him healed of his pain and set out to do exactly that. Mr. Collins throws in all kinds of sub-plots that keep the story moving briskly however the focus is on Jimmy. Through Mr. Collins’ excellent writing skills we come to understand Jimmy and want him to be healed from his almost crushing pain. We rejoice when he rejoices but I am not going to give away major plot points. You are just going to have to read this book. I guarantee you will really enjoy it.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Abingdon Press. 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 11 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Bound to be a Christmas Classic!!!

Date:November 16, 2012
Customer Avatar
Heart2Heart
Location:Victorville, CA
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
The hardest thing to deal with during the holidays is the death of a family member. Yet despite the fact the war is over and people are finding reasons to celebrate with the depression in the back and soldiers returning home, it's not the same for Jimmy Reed. While it's been a couple years since him and his mom received a telegram informing them that Robert Reed was killed while defending his country, he hasn't been able to deal with the loss of his father.
His mom, Marge works long hours at Miller's Store in hopes she might make enough money to get Jimmy something he needs for Christmas, but she knows the one thing he wants most in the world will be something that no amount of money can buy. She struggles with finding a way to help him deal with his grief and lately he's been getting into more trouble at school. She fears it's only a matter of time before he gets into trouble that will have a lasting effect and will only get worse.
Now that Christmas is almost here, Jimmy learns of a way to make some extra money but simply providing a couple of guys with the key to Miller's Store that his mom has. If he does that, they will offer to split the take once they rob the safe the weekend before Christmas. Jimmy wonders if being able to have enough money will be able to turn his life around, but once he commits to following through with this plan, he can not go back or they will threaten to kill his mom.
In the novel, A Christmas Star by Ace Collins, the reader is taken back to December 21, 1945 where the story begins. The country is beginning to celebrate once again except for Jimmy. Despite the people he encounters in town, he can't help but feel he will never live up the image of his dad who won the Congressional Medal of Honor, which has now replaced the traditional Christmas star on the top of their tree since they received it. To Jimmy, it's just another reminder that his dad is gone and will never come home. This is such a classic story of seeing different sides to a situation and how Jimmy deals with coming to terms with a solution is strictly brilliant by this author. I know this novel has found a permanent home in my library and will be one I read each year just before Christmas.
I received A Christmas Star compliments of Pump Up Your Book Tours and Abingdon Press for my honest review. I'm such a huge fan of any Christmas Fiction books and when Ace Collins coupled this one with a background of World War II, I was completely interested. It truly has a timeless message of hope and light in the darkest of places, especially during the Christmas season that will last long after you finish the book. Truly this is a book that can be read at any time during the year and I have to rate this one a 5 of of 5 Christmas Stars!!!
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Review 12 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A MUST READ FOR CHRISTMAS

Date:November 8, 2012
Customer Avatar
Teresa M
Location:West Columbia, SC
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
A Christmas Star by Ace Collins
In this nostalgic Christmas story Ace Collins leads us back in time to post-war Arkansas. There we meet 16 year old Jimmy Reed, a young man with a huge chip on his shoulder yearning to grow up and make a name for himself. But as we all know teenagers even in 1945 have been known to make wrong choices.
Jimmy Reed is trying his best to cope with the life he has been dealt; a father that died fighting a war in a foreign land, although a hero, Jimmy is angry that his father had to die. Now he watches as his mother works so very hard to try to make ends meet. All because of that day in May 1942 when they received word that Robert Reed, beloved husband and dad had been killed, nothing has been the same for Jimmy or his mother, especially Christmas, the day that used to mean the world to the Reed family. Now at Christmas instead of reading the Christmas story and happily putting up their traditional star on top of the tree his mom now put up his dad’s Congressional Medal of Honor in its place. Even hearing that his dad was a hero doesn’t make it any easier.
Jimmy is struggling to do the right thing with his life and the more he hears about his father the more he feels he can never measure up especially now that he has committed to do something that will forever change his life and possibly send him to jail. When a complete stranger comes to town and tells Jimmy and his mom another unbelievable story of his father‘s courage, the more Jimmy wants to be the son his father would be proud of. Is it too late for Jimmy to change what he has done? Will Jimmy get a Christmas miracle??
Ace Collins sure knows how to draw you into his stories with his characters that literally pop out at you from the pages. This was a beautifully written story that had you wanting to cry one minute and then cheer the next. This is definitely an uplifting Christmas story that will warm your heart and make you smile. Ladies this would make the perfect stocking stuffer for the guys in your life. Thank you Ace for writing a story that deserves to become a Christmas Classic!
Thanks to Abingdon Press and Net Galley for providing me an arc of this story in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Review 13 for The Christmas Star
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

satisfying story

Date:October 29, 2012
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Janice H. Johnson
Location:NM
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
This story relates the growing up pains of a teenage boy.
The problems he faces are believable and realistic. The characters who interact and influence him are, too. They make you wish you had someone like that to help you when the decisions get tough. The ending involves a surprise, but is not so abrupt that it feels contrived, and the result is satisfying. I am recommending it for several friends and family members.
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