I lost my mother on Valentine's Day of 2006. After weeks of struggling with my grief, I decided I would write a story for her. As she loved Christmas, I chose to write a Christmas novel, my first since The Christmas Box.
Finding Noel is about how people come into our lives for a reason. It is a love story about Macy and Mark, two young people from different worlds.
I'm sorry that this Christmas, for the first time since I became a writer, I won't be able to present my mother with a copy of my book. I think she would have enjoyed reading it. But, then again, I'm not certain that she hasn't.
As you read Finding Noel, I hope that you enjoy the journey and feel the same powerful emotions I felt as the story came to me.
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Richard Paul Evans
"When I was young, my mother told me that everyone comes into our lives for a reason."
On a snowy November evening in Salt Lake City, Mark Smart, sitting in a broken down car, has hit rock bottom. He's lost his college scholarship, been dumped by his girlfriend back home, and most shattering of all, just learned of his mother's sudden death. But at the moment that he feels most hopeless, he meets Macy Wood, a kind and lovely stranger who is haunted by tragedies of her own.
Mark grows closer to Macy, learning the sad details of her past -- a neglectful father, an abusive adoptive family, and a lost sister, Noel. Guided by the message on an old glass ornament, Macy begins a journey to reconnect with her sister. As Mark helps Macy's search, he examines his own life, finding love, forgiveness, and the true meanings of family and Christmas.
1. Finding Noel opens with an opinion, the narrator questioning an inspirational thought. Does this immediately create an impression of the narrator? Does Mark's skepticism make him more human and accessible? How does his questioning help draw you into his story?
2. In Mark's first encounter with Macy, she says, "We always tell our deepest secrets to strangers." (Pg. 12) Do you agree with her reasoning for this? How does Mark's initial honesty create a foundation for his relationship with Macy? In what ways do see more