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Miracle and Other Christmas Stories

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  1,606 Ratings  ·  196 Reviews
The winner of multiple Hugo and Nebula Awards, Connie Willis capture the timeless essence of generosity and goodwill in this magical collection if Christmas stories. These eight tales-two of which have never before been published-boldly reimagine the stories of Christmas while celebrating the power of love and compassion. This enchanting treasury includes:
"Miracle," in wh
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Paperback, 298 pages
Published October 31st 2000 by Bantam (first published 1999)
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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Final review, first posted on Fantasy Literature:

Miracle and Other Christmas Stories is a collection of eight short science fiction and fantasies by Connie Willis, plus an introduction and an afterword. It was on sale for $1.99 in early December 2016 ― a great value. It combines Willis’ heartfelt love for Christmas with a clear-eyed but sympathetic view of humanity and its foibles. In the introduction, Willis talks about how she has tried to walk the fine line between cynicism and “mawkish sapp
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Richard Derus
Rating: 2* of five

The Book Description: Connie Willis loves Christmas. "I even like the parts most people hate--shopping in crowded malls and reading Christmas newsletters and seeing relatives and standing in baggage check-in lines at the airport. Okay, I lied. Nobody likes standing in baggage check-in lines," she writes. Willis knows it's hard to write good Christmas stories: the subject matter is limited, the writer has to balance between sentiment and skepticism, and too many fall into the Vi
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Jessica
Jul 20, 2007 Jessica rated it it was amazing
A Christmas favorite, I have just begun my annual re-read. A must for anyone looking for a good Christmas story. "Newsletter" and "Epiphany" are my favorites, with "Miracle" and "Inn" coming close behind, but all the stories are gems.

Reread 2012: Still so wonderful! Puts me right in the Christmas mood!

Reread 2013: This book continues to be a wonderful, mood-lifting intro to Christmas. I am making it a goal, however, to find the other stories and books that she recommends at the end. (At least,
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Azumi
Dec 22, 2016 Azumi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Los relatos de este libro sí son historias de Navidad y ambientadas totalmente en Navidad.

Son historias situadas todas en nuestro tiempo, con protagonistas normales y todos tienen su punto de magia, fantasia o ciencia ficción.

Me han entretenido y en general me han gustado todos, claro que a mí me encanta Connie Willis. Mis preferidos “Posada” , “Boletín de noticias”, “el Pony” y “Garra de gato”

Muy curioso el final donde la autora nos hace un “regalo” navideño, recomendándonos películas y novel
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Melissa McShane
It's been seventeen years since I last read this story collection (the year it came out, actually), and this time, I figured out why I've never come back to it: despite my enjoyment of most of the stories, there were enough of them I didn't love that it left me feeling rather meh about the whole thing. It doesn't help that "Epiphany," my least favorite, is the last one in the collection and therefore the one that made the final impression on me. Possibly it's that the religious beliefs of the ma ...more
Andree
Nov 08, 2015 Andree rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I finished this a couple of days ago. Originally I was kind of disappointed and meh about this (despite loving the introduction). I liked all the stories, but didn't really love them. Then I thought about it more, and realized my expectations for Connie Willis are impossibly high. If I don't love it like Bellwether or become emotionally compromised like Doomsday Book, I'm disappointed.

And that is completely unreasonable. This is a perfectly enjoyable book by any standard. By Connie Willis st
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Lulu
This is the kind of book that is very hard to rate, for a few reasons. Mostly, it's because while the writing was good, and the some of the stories were excellent, it was still a book about Christmas. And for some reason, while my head says "but there were so many great stories!", my heart just doesn't know how to justify giving 4-stars to something related to the most sentimental and, dare I say it, twee holidays of the year. But I will mark it 4-stars, because the whole point of this collectio ...more
Michael
Aug 20, 2009 Michael rated it really liked it
Connie Willis offers readers an early holiday gift with this wonderful short story collection. I admit that I found this book in the sci-fi section, but I honestly think it transcends that. Yes, it's got some stories that deal with themes common to science-fiction and have sci-fi elements, but it's more than that. There is a holiday themed mystery, an examination of the original Christmas story and even a story that sets out to prove why Willis thinks "Miracle on 34th Street" is a superior holid ...more
Carolyn
Dec 13, 2014 Carolyn rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, christmas
In this book of short stories, Connie Willis does what she does so well and takes a well known story and reinvents it in her own style. Of the eight Christmas stories in this collection, I enjoyed "Inn" the most, a reworking of the nativity where a choral singer helps a homeless couple expecting a baby who have lost their way. The ending had a lovely magical fee to it. I also enjoyed "In Coppelius Toyshop" which turned into a horror story where a self-centred man gets lost forever in a toyshop." ...more
Sue
Jun 08, 2010 Sue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys Christmas stories with some meaning
I'm so glad I decided to buy this collection for kindle this year as I've been wanting to read it for some time. These are really nice stories, full of the spirit of this time of the year, whether they involve an unsolved mystery or possible alien invasion. At the base of each is human emotion, searching, hope, sometimes love.


These stories remind me of the teleplays that used to be on tv in the "old days". They have soul and feeling that isn't found as often in modern tales of Christmas and Wil
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Ana T.
Dec 02, 2007 Ana T. rated it really liked it
Shelves: christmas, anthology
This book was recommended to me by T. I was a bit worried about trying it because I haven't been very fond of fantasy lately.
However it had a Christmas theme and I decided to follow her advice and start it. It was the best thing I did because I really enjoyed it.
I had never heard of Connie Willis but after browsing the WWW I discovered she is very well known in the Sci Fi community.

This is an anthology including 8 stories with a Christmas theme. I must say I also really enjoyed reading the intro
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Raquel Laforet
Dec 28, 2016 Raquel Laforet rated it liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
En general mis relatos favoritos son los que ya me había leído y están incluídos en The Winds of Marble Arch and Other Stories, pero el relato "Garra de gato" me ha gustado mucho, sobre todo porque retoma un tema presente en algún relato de la citada antología y me ha sorprendido ver que la autora retoma el tema.
Linda Crook
Mar 22, 2012 Linda Crook rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: For anyone who loves Christmas
I had a moment of pure happiness when I realized that it was the holiday season, and that meant I got to read this book again. My yearly tradition is to start around Thanksgiving with the introduction - just as wonderful as the stories - and work my way through slowly. "Epiphany" I save for the new year, when things are gray and going back to humdrum, and it brings Christmas back into my heart. I "honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year," but this book, and each story, are ...more
MB
Dec 27, 2008 MB rated it it was amazing
Perfection!

There is a Christmas story in this book for everyone, whether you're a soppy sentimentalist, a B-movie lover or a fan of the disturbing. Brilliant. My only complaint is that I got the book from the library, and now I have to find a copy so I can own it!
Beth
This is a collection of 8 Christmas-themed stories. My favorite is "Newsletter."

The title story, "Miracle," is a romantic comedy.

In "Inn," a choir member rehearsing for the Christmas pageant becomes part of the original Christmas story when Mary and Joseph show up, displaced in time.

"In Coppelius’s Toyshop" is a "what goes around comes around" kind of story with a nasty narrator who gets trapped in a children’s toy store at Christmastime.

"The Pony" is a cautionary tale about a psychotherapist wh
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Rosario (http://rosario.blogspot.com/)
My first Christmas read of the season wasn't a success, but this one really hit the spot. I read it for my book club, where we have a tradition of reading something Christmas-related for our December meeting.

This collection had a nice variety of stories.

The first story is Miracle, where we get the crazy preparations for a completely over-the-top office party. This one is about how you sometimes don't know what you want, even when what you need is right in front of you. It's themed around the con
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Lesa
Dec 27, 2011 Lesa rated it really liked it


It’s December 23rd. Do your Christmas traditions include family readings, or reading for yourself? Have you pulled out your favorite Christmas books yet? Last year, I bought autographed copies for myself and my two sisters of Connie Willis’ Miracle and Other Christmas Stories. If you only know Willis as a science fiction writer who won numerous Hugo and Nebula awards, the author of To Say Nothing of the Dog, Doomsday Book, and Blackout/All Clear, among others, you’re missing a treat. Connie Will
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Kaethe
Jan 22, 2009 Kaethe rated it it was amazing
It may well be that no human possesses as much humanity as Willis. In "Inn" is the single best use of the biblical Christmas story in relation to modern life, but all of them capture some aspect of the spirit of goodwill and generosity toward other people that Dickens was on to.
Althea Ann
Jun 09, 2010 Althea Ann rated it really liked it
I'm getting into the holiday spirit and thought I'd read this thematic collection. I have to admit to a bit of trepidation, but this was actually a pretty good collection.

• Miracle. 1991
I'm guessing this one was Willis' favorite, as it's first, longest, and the title story, but I thought it was the worst in the book (although it's not bad). This is probably because I have never seen EITHER "Miracle on 34th Street" or "It's a Wonderful Life," and the story is really all about said movies, and the
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Robert
Jan 23, 2010 Robert rated it liked it
Okay, so what's a Nice Jewish Boy like myself doing reading Christmas stories? And why read them in January?

Because I love Connie Willis, that's why.

These stories, like so much of her writing, are a pure pleasure to read. Many of them are funny. Some are a bit depressing. Some are a bit disturbing. All of them are filled with people that you could swear you've met.

And that, I think, is a big part of the joy of reading something by Connie Willis: the people in it are so real.

I was a bit worried,
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Nikki
May 24, 2011 Nikki rated it really liked it
I don't read a lot of speculative fiction, but Connie Willis is one author whose books I look for. This collection of stories set at Christmas is a keeper. Most are a bit long for reading aloud, but one or two just might show up in my Advent story-reading list this year.
Peggy
Dec 15, 2016 Peggy rated it liked it
A nice collection of Christmas stories written by the wonderful sci-fi author Connie Willis. I enjoyed reading the eight selections, though some felt more dated than others. My favorites were those that incorporated science fiction elements into Christmas stories, including "Cat's Paw" and "Newsletter." Christian readers will be delighted to find that Willis placed the real Christmas miracle into two of the stories, including one with a time-travel theme. This one, "Inn," had the same weaknesses ...more
Phrynne
Dec 23, 2016 Phrynne rated it liked it
I am not a fan of short stories but Connie Willis is one of my favourite authors so these should be okay!
And that's what they were - okay . No more, no less. I'm not sure that this authors style actually lends itself to the short story. She tends to being a bit wordy which can work in a full novel. However I think short stories need to be tighter, just because they are short.
Some of the stories were better than others and many of them had excellent story lines. There was no overindulgence in the
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Leroy Erickson
Dec 30, 2016 Leroy Erickson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I give this book five stars because of the first two stories, "Miracle" and "Inn". They are a couple of the best Christmas stories around with a lot of humor but true Christmas spirit. The other stories in the book are either four stars or three stars (well, one of them drifts closer to two stars). All together, this book was very enjoyable.
Judy
Dec 27, 2016 Judy rated it it was amazing
Going immediately into my collection of "read every winter holiday" books. Eight magical stories, plus forewords and afterwords that are as much fun to read as the stories.

Love it.
Paula Lyle
Dec 26, 2016 Paula Lyle rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
This is a very nice collection of Christmas stories, by one of my favorite authors. Perfect for the season.
Allyson Faith
Dec 11, 2016 Allyson Faith rated it it was amazing
Thoroughly enjoyed these very varied and unusual Christmas stories.
Chrissy
Dec 29, 2016 Chrissy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A nice collection, I reread a few of these -- the funnier ones -- every Christmas season.
Poetreehugger
Dec 30, 2016 Poetreehugger rated it really liked it
It's difficult to rate a collection of short stories, as the odds are against any one reader liking all the stories. But to rate the writing quality is easy for this collection: it's excellent.
I found the first story only confusing, and my heart sank to think there might be more like this. The second was more imaginative, although I was not quite intrigued. The third was just frightening to me, and felt like a bad dream! Although I didn't like the story, I have to admit the writing was definitel
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Kathleen
Jan 06, 2017 Kathleen rated it it was amazing
I love to read Christmas related books around the holidays. This is a different take on the genre.
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Constance Elaine Trimmer Willis is an American science fiction writer. She is one of the most honored science fiction writers of the 1980s and 1990s.

She has won, among other awards, ten Hugo Awards and six Nebula Awards. Willis most recently won a Hugo Award for All Seated on the Ground (August 2008). She was the 2011 recipient of the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award from the Science Ficti
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