Seldom have I ever been so totally immersed into the lives of the characters as I have in this superlative Christmas story.
This is a ‘past meets present’ story which opens up with a contemporary mother and her two children discovering a box of 200 year old wooden toys at an antique shop. Fascinated by the quality and workmanship they buy the whole box and discover a diary hidden at the bottom of the box that opens up the whole romantic history that takes place between Phillip and Lady Ivy. Here’s a short synopsis of the plot
Enter Phillip Greenstone, the 12th Duke of Greenbriar, upon the death of his aged reclusive uncle. It is nothing he had ever wanted having been orphaned as a young man and brought up by Jani, a master wood worker and toymaker. Lady Ivy Plumthorn is fast approaching spinsterhood as she refuses suitor after suitor, finding no one to her liking. Our toymaker Duke, “Mr. Green,” meets Lady Ivy and the attraction is instantaneous. But Lady Ivy and her parents insist she must marry into the peerage and Mr. Green is just a craftsman commoner. But, they have so much in common with their kind and generous hearts and their love of children. Our toymaker Duke must devise a plan to reveal his true identity to gently excuse his deception to Lady Ivy.
This is the almost perfect Christmas story and it is impossible to read it straight through with dry eyes. It is just so heart-warming and poignant as the old box of toys, diary, and history enchant the mother and her children once again.