Hank and Josie own a small nursery in Mays Landing, New Jersey. They have three kids and a house with a mortgage. Josie has worked hard making and selling wreaths to make money for Christmas presents. Two days before Christmas, while she is collecting pine cones for her wreaths, she finds a woman named Helen lying in the woods behind her house. She is bruised and beaten, but won't let Josie call for help. Helen lets Josie take her inside her house where Helen meets Josie's husband, Hank, and their daughter, Mabel. Josie notices Helen's strange, old-fashioned clothes and wonders where she came from. While talking about her son, Billy, Helen suddenly disappears.
Was Helen a ghost? As Josie begins to investigate, she discovers that Helen was a real person. In fact, she was Josie's great-grandmother, a woman who abandoned her young son and her husband to become a chorus girl in Atlantic City. But is the family history regarding Helen true, or a story concocted by her husband to cover her murder?
When Josie receives a foreclosure notice and realizes they are about to lose their house, it's just the beginning of a bad Christmas Eve. When circumstances threaten to ruin their Christmas, Josie and Hank discover that the old abandoned house across the street may hold the key to the mystery surrounding Helen's appearance, and to finding the money they need to save their family's home.
©2013 A.L. Jambor (P)2015 A.L. Jambor
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I enjoyed this short Christmas mystery story, but it would have been better if it were a little bit longer and the characters developed more. Also, there is no mention of whether the stolen money was found or not!
The narrator, Sabrina Hawkins, was good.
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