A Season of Miracles
Heather Graham manages to weave breathtaking suspense, paranormal happenings, and Christmas magic into a unique and enchanting love story. A Season Of Miracles kept me up late to see what happened next, and how it all turned out. And isn’t that what a good book is supposed to do?
Jillian Llewellyn is the favorite grandchild of her clan patriarch, who also happens to be her boss at Llewellyn Enterprises. But old Douglas isn’t getting any younger, and speculation about who will inherit the company runs rampant among the cousins. Will it be business wiz Daniel? Marketing expert Eileen? PR guru Theo? Professional charmer Griff? Or perhaps it could be Jillian herself. She’s a jewelry designer – and doesn’t want a thing to do with such an inheritance. Now Douglas has brought in a silent partner, Robert Marston, a man equally familiar and foreign to Jillian. And suddenly, it looks like someone wants Jillian dead.
Robert has been hired to look after Jillian. Douglas knows someone is out to get her, and he isn’t about to let them. Of course, Robert isn’t prepared for the feeling of recognition he experiences when he meets Jillian for the first time – or the attraction. And suddenly his dreams are haunted by the ghost of Jillian’s late husband Milo, warning him to take care of her, because three centuries ago, he’d failed to do so.
The suspense in this novel is intense, and Ms. Graham does an excellent job of making everyone a suspect at all times. The paranormal aspect is even better. Both the recurring dreams of the past, and the insistently helpful ghost of Milo are terrific and riveting. There is humor here, and a ruthless portrayal of realistic family life, loving but not always content, with undertones of much darker relationships. The details are terrific, and add to the story created by the improbable circumstances and the very well-drawn characters who inhabit it.
The hero and heroine are both terrific. Jillian is vulnerable without being helpless. Robert seems strong, but is equally vulnerable in his own way, and the strange dreams that haunt them both play on his weaknesses perhaps even more than hers. Ms. Graham does an excellent job of showing how they are both connected to the past, yet wholly separate from it – which may be what saves them.
If I could change anything about this book, it would be the parts about the past; I would like to see them a little more clearly. The main event that drives the story is portrayed vividly, even hauntingly. But it’s made clear that those inhabiting the cast of the present are reincarnated from those who lived out the tragedy of 300 years past, and I would have liked to know just who was who, particularly as one character makes a big deal about wanting to know who she was. We’re never told. This is a small gripe, though, in an otherwise enchanting novel.
Bottom line? This story kept me turning pages well past my bedtime, and I love that in a book. It was my first Graham, but definitely not my last. It’s a Christmas tale with a fun, paranormal twist.