For readers of Richard Paul Evans and Greg Kincaid comes The 13th Gift, a heartwarming Christmas story about how a random act of kindness transformed one of the bleakest moments in a family's history into a time of strength and love.
After the unexpected death of her husband, Joanne Huist Smith had no idea how she would keep herself together and be strong for her three children - especially with the holiday season approaching. But 12 days before Christmas, presents begin appearing on her doorstep with notes from their "True Friends." As the Smiths came together to solve the mystery of who the gifts were from, they began to thaw out from their grief and come together again as a family. This true story about the power of random acts of kindness will warm the heart, a beautiful reminder of the miracles of Christmas and the gift of family during the holiday season.
©2014 Joanne Huist Smith (P)2014 Random House Audio
"If there ever was a roller-coasterish page-turner of a Christmas book, this would be it. As a veteran devourer of Christmas stories short and long, fictional and true, I mistakenly assumed I'd encountered every conceivable plot variant in the genre. Turns out I was dead-wrong. Joanne Hurst Smith's wondrous story hit me from so many directions, playing on the strings of so many emotions, that it left me limp at the end Quite simply, it is a masterpiece." (Joe L. Wheeler, Ph.D., author of the bestselling Christmas in My Heart series)
"The 13th Gift has a touch of magic in it. It's a lovely story that proves we can recover from any loss, strengthened by the blessings of others. It's a classic for the Christmas season--and all seasons." (Glenn Plaskin, author of Katie Up And Down The Hall: The True Story Of How One Dog Turned Five Neighbors Into A Family)
"For readers of Richard Paul Evans and Greg Kincaid comes The 13th Gift, a heartwarming Christmas memoir about how a random act of kindness transformed one of the bleakest moments in a family's history into a time of strength and love." (Book Reporter.com)
Yes, I would recommend this book.
How real it felt.
When things became happy.
The only thing I had a problem with, is the reader sounded just like Rosanne Barr's voice, when she is being nice. It took me a few chapters to get her out of my head because I can't stand her. Very nice story, and it made me want to start this tradition for someone in need.
Myst/thrillers, some contemporary and ✨fun fantasies✨are my favorites but always open for a good story.
This was a very heart wrenching book based on a true story of love, loss and a journey of the heart.
A beautiful story! Transforming grief to joy!
The gift of selfless love
It made my heart feel filled with love
The person reading it.
When they found out who was leaving the gifts and why this was started. It made you feel so good and makes you want to be a part of it.
Stop the whining. It was sad but the annoying, constant whining was like nails on a chalkboard. It took me several months to finally finish it.
The story was an incredible act of unselfish kindness.
the experience was sad but the family kept together and helped each other cope with their loss.
Phil and Judy
Good story, enjoyed the story but did not enjoy the reading of the story.
A different reader.
Narrator is author. She is fine-easy to listen to and expressive. As a grieving mother I could relate to this family's feelings. Story is uplifting. Felt like it was a little simplistic. Not sure a few days of anonymous gifts can be that life changing, but it was a nice listen for the holiday season. Felt like author had to stretch small moments out to make a book. Only covers short time period. Could have been a short story.
Easy to follow and nice ending.
pay it forward.
Narration by the Author was monotone, and uninteresting.
I think the Author should of hired a professional, instead of reading it herself. There was no differance in characters, therefore hard to follow, monotone and didnt keep your interest. The story line was sweet, pay it forward type story during the holiday season of a family dealing with grief. For me this was an average read.
I loved the book secret life of ceecee wilks is ther any other books like that one
it could of been alot shorter .I think way to many details.
when they found out who was putting gifts at their door step.
Reader, Reviewer, and BOOKIN' WITH BINGO BLOG OWNER
Joanne Huist Smith’s THE THIRTEENTH GIFT is based on the true story of when the author’s husband, Rick, died suddenly, and how their family came to terms with it. Joanne was faced with dealing with her loss at the same time she had to help her children get through it and deal with the upcoming Christmas holiday. Joanne doesn’t want to face it but with Megan, who is 10, Nick who is twelve, and seventeen-year-old Ben, she is forced to do something. Her family is falling apart as she writes about how each of them is handling the loss. It isn’t until the first mystery gift, a poinsettia plant, is left on their porch 12 days before Christmas, that things slowly start to change.
With each day and each new surprise, one by one, the family gets on board with waiting for the surprises and trying to guess who is doing it all. Each gift has a handmade card with it and it evolves into solving the puzzle as a family, even though Joanne fights it with every piece of her heart. As the “true friends” help this family, the Smiths find that they themselves are also taken to helping others. The puzzling gifts truly act as a miracle. They bring each of the grieving family members out of their own horror and into working and living together again. With the help and love of true friends, the Smith family eventually learns to cope.
The 13th Gift is a wonderful Christmas story especially in that it is true. If this doesn’t get you in the holiday spirit, I don’t know what will. It is a fast read (or in my case, listen) and you just might find yourself wanting to do something for others as well. Trust me, the giving spirit of this story can really make a difference in your life as well.
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