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Christmas at Harrington's

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  1,874 ratings  ·  273 reviews
Christmas is approaching, and Lena Markham finds herself penniless, friendless, and nearly hopeless. She is trying to restart her life after false accusations landed her in prison, but job opportunities are practically nonexistent. When a secondhand red coat unexpectedly lands her a job as Mrs. Santa at a department store, Lena finally thinks her luck is changing. But can ...more
Hardcover, 167 pages
Published October 1st 2010 by Fleming H. Revell Company
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Mike (the Paladin)
Let me be a little "non-PC" here. I believe that you'll enjoy this book more if you're a woman. There are few male characters at all...and most are pretty negative. Still lots of encouragement and in the end a positive outlook.

I'm a Christian and while I don't recommend getting a lot of your theology or Christian thought from most novels, still you can get some encouragement or thoughts there.

I didn't get as involved in it as I would have hoped. As I said, I really believe that this will appea
I must say that I am guilty of judging a book by its cover, when I saw the cover for Christmas at Harrington's I immediately felt like it was going to be an amazing Christmas story, on the cover you find yourself on a street of any small town in the USA, you have a smiling lady, dressed in a red coat peering into a store window with a display of a Christmas tree and toys snowflakes falling all around her, its just beautiful and depicts the holiday season perfectly.
In this story we are introduced
I started out really enjoying this tale and thought I would be rating it 5-stars, but then somewhere around the time the silly Mrs. Santa junk started the story went off-track. It was like the author couldn't make up her mind what genre she wanted to write. It started out human and realistic which worked well in a story about a woman fresh out of prison, living on the edge of homelessness, trying to cope as best she could with gross injustice, but as the story went on, it dropped its aura of gri ...more
Giovanni Gelati
I have to admit that the cover is what drew me to Christmas at Harrington's. I absolutely love everything about Christmas. The cover depicts a snowy scene in what appears to be the main street in a small town. The street is decorated for Christmas; there is a beautifully decked out store window display. Pictured is a woman wearing what looks like a coat Santa might don, admiring the window display. It's such a warm and inviting scene; I couldn't wait to start the book.

Right from the start, I had
Lena Markham is an ex-con being released just a few short weeks before Christmas. With no family to return to, she makes her new home in New Haven and arrives filled with both apprehension and a small amount of hope. After locating the boardinghouse at which she will be staying she attends church at the request of an older woman next to whom she sat on the bus on the way to New Haven. Between Moira, and a few other well-planned characters, Lena begins to learn that she is not hopeless, but indee ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Let me be a little "non-PC" here. I believe that you'll enjoy this book more if you're a woman. There are few male characters at all...and most are pretty negative. Still lots of encouragement and in the end a positive outlook.

I'm a Christian and while I don't recommend getting a lot of your theology or Christian thought from most novels, still you can get some encouragement or thoughts there.

I didn't get as involved in it as I would have hoped. As i said, I really believe that this will appeal
Nora St Laurent
Since I’m a huge Melody Carlson fan, I was thrilled to receive this review copy of Christmas at Harrington’s. Melody knows how to tell a story to prepare your heart and mind for Christmas. Reading this book is the perfect way to start the holiday season. This novel opens with Lena Markham heading to New Haven for a fresh start.

Lena quickly adjusts to this new town and finds herself helping out a neighbor by watching her daughter, Jemima, as she looks for a job. Lena discovers an unexpected job
Nov 15, 2010 ReviewsByMolly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to ReviewsByMolly by: Revell
One of my most favorite times of the year is Christmas. I love the colors, the feel, the sounds, and the smells. Yep, the smells! But I also love reading the Christmas stories that authors write, so, when Christmas at Harrington's by Melody Carlson became available, I couldn't resist wanting to review it! Not only did it sound like a really sweet read, I fell in love with the cover. The cover scene really came to life for me and instantly captivated me for the story!

Christmas at Harrington's is
Christmas at Harrington's by author Melody Carlson, is a delightful book that has, at its core, the true meaning of Christmas.

Lena Markham has just been released from prison after spending eight years behind bars for a crime she didn't commit. Now, she is trying to start her life over again, in New Haven, Minnesota, far away from those who knew her in her former life. With hardly a cent to her name and wondering how she will survive, she lands a job as Mrs. Santa Claus, at Harrington's Departme
CHRISTMAS AT HARRINGTON’S is a delightful read just in time for the holidays.

Lena Markham is ready to make a new start in life, but is society willing to accept her back? After being set-up, wrongly accused, and imprisoned, Lena heads to the small town of New Haven with the address of a boardinghouse and the promise of a job. But she never could have imagined that the job she is offered is to play Mrs. Santa for Harrington’s Department Store. Not exactly what she had in mind, but with no other o
Dichotomy Girl
2.5 Stars

I read this because I was in the mood for something Christmasy and I'd downloaded it free from Amazon last year. I knew it was going to be preachy, because I am familiar with Melody Carlson from my distant past.

I found it quite naive, and some of the scenes were REALLY hard to believe. (I can't imagine leaving my 6 year old daughter with a stranger I'd just met for any reason), and of course the ending was happy and wrapped up in a perfect little bow, but I think it helped that I expect
This is my second attempt at a Melody Carlson book... I'm thinking now that I'm just not a fan of hers. Her writing doesn't pull me in. It's like I'm reading something that's not even real (well of course it's not REAL, it's a book, but it should FEEL real!). This wasn't doing that for me. And the thing I didn't get at all in the actual story was why the owner of Harrington's got so upset when she found out about the main character's criminal record...when she had AGREED to let her work there, a ...more
Barb Klein
“Christmas at Harrington’s" by Melody Carlson was a different kind of story than I normally read. The story is about a woman, Helena (Lena) Markham, who has just been paroled from prison. Instead of going home to Indiana, she wants to be far away from her home town and is placed in New Haven, Connecticut where a job awaits her. As she is travelling on the bus, she befriends a nice older woman who provides her with a sandwich and some much needed companionship. Moira talks about her son and his 1 ...more
Christmas at Harrington's was a free Kindle download and I decided to read it a few nights ago when I had insomnia. It actually started out really well and it was interesting that the heroine had been in prison. That's not something you see much in Christian fiction, so I liked that it was a little gritty. But about halfway through the book, it went from kinda edgy to fluffy puppies and rainbows. Everything turned out perfectly and they rode off into the sunset (or something like that). I like m ...more
A cute Christmas story I got free for my Kindle. I've read two other Melody Carlson Christmas books in the past (I own "The Christmas Dog" and "The Christmas Bus") and I probably enjoyed this one as much or more. I love reading these short, easy, seasonal books this time of year.
C.J. Darlington
I do not normally read Christmas books. And yet when I picked this one up, I couldn't stop reading it. Would make a perfect Hallmark Channel movie! In fact, it reminds me a little of A Season of Miracles.
Toledo (T.J.)
This book had a nice twist since the lead character was a woman who had just gotten out of prison and starting fresh in a new town. Nicely done.
Book about lady just released from prison, trying to start a new life. I couldn't put book down, had to keep reading. Enjoyable Christmas read!
Pleasant but predictable Christmas tale
Typical Melody Carlson.
Joy Gerbode
This was a very good book ... nice holiday story, very inspirational.
Janice Aitkens
I read this on the Kindle

The story is one of how Lena who just been released from Prison after serving 8 years for a crime she did not do
She arrives at New Haven for a new start but some just don't want her to have that
She becomes Mrs Santa & how she shares love & forgiveness
My only problem with this is that i feel that the ending could have been a bit better especially as you don't know about Cassidy & what happens but it was a feel good read of Christmas for me in July as that when
Christmas at Harrington's by Melody Carlson was a very sweet story about Lena - a woman who moves to New Haven for a fresh start on her broken life. It is really full of the Christmas spirit as Lena meets new people and continues to touch lives.

It was different than what I usually enjoy in a book, but the story was really touching and interesting, which kept me flipping the pages until the end. Lena's gentle nature and the way she reached out and touched Jemima's life was really sweet. The chara
"Christmas at Harrington's" is Christian general fiction. It's got the heart-warming ending expected in a Christian Christmas short novel, but it dealt with a subject I think most people haven't even considered: how tough it is for those released from prison to find a person willing to give them a job. In Lena's case, it hurts even worse because she's innocent. She was set up by her pastor husband to take the fall for his theft. So Lena hides her past to get a job, and she makes some friends. Bu ...more
Kristi (Books and Needlepoint)
This was definitely a feel-good story but for those who might be scared off by the title, I did not find it overwhelmingly "Christmas-y". It was set in the weeks before and after Thanksgiving, and does give you small doses of the message of salvation, so would be good for someone who doesn't have a personal relationship with Christ.

It made me think about treasures from my childhood that might evoke nostalgic memories if I were to stumble across them today. Like a Mrs. Beasley doll or an old dia
Victor Gentile
Melody Carlson in her new book, "Christmas At Harrington's" published by Revell gives us a story that will really get us into the Christmas spirit.

Lena Markham has made a lot of mistakes in her life and the big one was trusting someone who she thought loved her and who got her sent to prison for things he did. Now, seven years later, she is free to start her life over and she leaves it to the prison official as to where. So with a bus ticket, $65, second hand clothes and a job waiting for her sh
Author: Melody Carlson
Publisher: Revell
October 2010
ISBN: 978-0-8007-1925-8
Genre: Inspirational/Christmas

Lena Markham has recently been released from serving an eight-year prison sentence for a crime she didn’t commit. She wants a fresh start in a new town, and the social worker set her up with a few ill-fitting second hand clothes, an apartment in the bad part of town, a job, and a bus trip to Minnesota.

But when Lena arrives she finds out that all is not perfect.
The Christmas season has begun as far as I’m concerned because I have read Melody’s new Christmas book. I couldn’t help but get in the Christmas spirit after reading Christmas at Harrington’s. Last year I read Melody’s The Christmas Dog and really enjoyed the happy, uplifting message and I looked forward to more of the same this year.

I was equally, if not more, delighted by Christmas at Harrington’s. I liked Lena right away and felt a great deal of compassion for her situation. I liked how Melo
Clockstein Lockstein

Christmas at Harrington's by Melody Carlson is a enjoyable novella perfect for the busy holiday season. Lena Markham has just been released from eight years in prison in time for Christmas. With no desire to return to the hometown that turned on her, she decides to start over in New Haven, Minnesota. When a donated red coat gets her a job as Mrs. Santa it seems like her life is getting better, but will the sins of her past haunt and destroy her chance of a future? Lena is a terrific character, c
Eustacia Tan
What Christmas series of books would be complete without Melody Carlson? This time, I managed to get my hands on one of her Christmas novella's.

Christmas at Harrington's has an interesting premise. Lena, the protagonist, is a recently ex-convict. Deciding not to go back to her hometown, she travels to the town of New Haven, where she hopes to make a fresh start. And somehow, she manages to get a job at Harrington's as Mrs Santa, make friends, and melt down her barriers a little. But, someone fro
Trinity Rose
Melody Carlson’s “Christmas at Harrington’s” is a beautiful story.
This is the first book I’ve ever read of Melody Carlson’s and wonder where I have been all of this time to not have heard of her. I’m so very glad to be able to receive this book and find another favorite author.
This is the first Christmas book I’ve read this time if the year. Lena has just been
released from prison and decides to go for a fresh start faraway from her home town. Lena wants to keep this a secret so her life can st
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The Happy Housewi...: Christmas at Harrington's 2 10 Dec 13, 2013 06:12PM  
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Melody Carlson is the award-winning author of over two hundred books, several of them Christmas novellas from Revell, including her much-loved and bestselling book, The Christmas Bus.

She also writes many teen books, including the Diary of a Teenage Girl series, the TrueColors series, and the Carter House Girls series.

Melody was nominated for a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award in the inspi
More about Melody Carlson...
Becoming Me (Diary of a Teenage Girl: Caitlin, #1) Dark Blue: Color Me Lonely (TrueColors, #1) Blade Silver: Color Me Scarred (TrueColors, #7) It's My Life (Diary of a Teenage Girl: Caitlin, #2) Finding Alice

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