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Book review: Fans find resolution, peace in Gray's newest installment

"Peace: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel" is by Shelley Shepard Gray.
"Peace: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel" is by Shelley Shepard Gray.
HarperCollins

Editors note: These recently released Christmas books include nonfiction and fiction, historical and contemporary, romance and history and each carries with the spirit of the season.

"PEACE: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel," by Shelley Shephard Gray, Avon Inspire, $12.99, 229 pages (f)

Fans of Shelley Shephard Gray’s The Secrets of Crittenden County trilogy received a great holiday gift this season: the continuation of Chris and Beth's romance in the Christmas-themed novel “Peace: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel."

“Peace” begins a few months after the final installment of the trilogy, “Found." In this new novel, Chris returns to Crittenden County and the Yellow Bird Inn. He is badly hurt and needs a place to hide. Instead of the Inn’s owner, Chris finds Beth who agrees to help him, though she fears it will lead to another broken heart.

Readers unfamiliar with The Secrets of Crittenden County trilogy should consider reading the trilogy before beginning “Peace." The author assumes a high level of familiarity with the characters and earlier plot throughout “Peace," that may confuse a new reader.

Though "Peace" is primarily a story of romance, the language and material is clean. While Chris is hurt before “Peace” begins, the novel lives up to its name by delivering a story free from violence and full of holiday peace.

Alicia Cunningham is a graduate of Brigham Young University and George Mason School of Law. A mother of four, she teaches American government and intellectual property law at Neumont University. She blogs at bloggingonbooks.wordpress.com