The Book Shelf: Home for the Holidays

Planning for the holidays can be exhausting. There are dinners to prepare, presents to buy, cookies to bake, as well as all of the everyday activities that need to be accomplished. If you are looking for a little holiday inspiration, consider reading one of these books during those few minutes that you can sit down and relax. Whether you need a little help with the baking or just a short respite, hopefully these books will help fulfill your holiday wishes.

Paris for One and Other Stories

By: Jojo Moyes

Paris for One and Other Stories is a compilation of short stories that feature a variety of characters in romantic entanglements. Paris for One is the longest of the short stories, and centers around Nell and her weekend trip to Paris. Nell has planned the perfect romantic getaway for herself and her boyfriend Pete, however, things don’t turn out quite as planned when Pete cancels at the last minute leaving Nell to travel to Paris on her own. Once Nell arrives at her hotel, things go from bad to worse when she finds out that the one remaining room has been double booked by her and an American business woman. Since neither Nell nor the American is able to find an alternative room, they will have to share. Nell spends the night in misery and eats dinner alone in a French café, where she manages to spill her drink all over the helpful waiter. Nell’s trip slowly becomes a little more enjoyable after she sees a few sights and scores tickets to an exclusive art show. At the art show she bumps into the handsome waiter from the evening before and they end up sharing an evening out on the town. In Fabian, the waiter, Nell finds all of the qualities that her current boyfriend lacks. As Nell and Fabian discover their budding relationship, they will have to cope with significant others, living in two different countries, as well as many other mishaps.

In this work Moyes reveals her masterful development of both plot and characters. Each of the short stories will have readers captivated by the characters’ plights and sympathetic to their troubles. The work’s smooth, easy to read style makes it perfect for readers who might only have a few minutes to sit down and relax.

Christmas Cookies: 75 Irresistible Holiday Treats

By: The Good Housekeeping Institute

This recipe book for holiday cookies is filled with new and classic recipes that will inspire your holiday baking. Some of the highlights include: gingerbread, spice cookies, stained glass ornaments, Christmas fruit drops, cranberry-chocolate chunk cookies, biscotti, linzer cookies, rugelach and many more. All of the recipes are developed and tested in the Good Housekeeping kitchen to provide maximum flavor with minimal effort. The Good Housekeeping team has shared some tips and tricks for cookie baking with readers. Some of the helpful tips include: how to travel with homemade cookies, baking shortcuts, how to store ingredients, and the basics of cookie decorating. Many of these recipes can also be easily modified to accommodate food allergies and the ingredients that you have on hand. Additionally, the

Good Housekeeping staff has fully tested all of the recipes for a variety of ingredient brands that readers might use, so you can be assured that your cookies will turn out well regardless.

If you are looking for holiday cookie recipes that have something for everyone, this is the cookbook for you. The recipes are easy to make, contain helpful tips, and produce excellent results. Whether you are just baking for your family or preparing for a cookie swap, this cookbook has something that will please everyone.

If you like these books and would like to find similar titles, check out NoveList Plus. This online resource, available through the Mid-Continent Public Library, will help you find fiction books that appeal to your personal reading style. For non-fiction titles, check out Books & Authors.


Stacy Hisle-Chaudri is the Assistant Branch Manager at the Parkville Branch of the Mid-Continent Public Library. Stacy has worked in library and archival environments for ten years, and is a native of the Kansas City area. She has a Master of Library and Information Science from Wayne State University and a Master of Arts in History from the University of Central Missouri. Her areas of expertise are reader’s advisory, technology instruction, and genealogy research.