The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come is an unwelcome visitor on December 24. But even ghosts tire of being on the job, even if it's only one day a year. Transformed into a human and dumped into a snowbank with nothing but her standard-issue shroud, this Ghost of Christmas becomes "Laura Snow" and begs for shelter at the home of moneylender and Ebenezer Scrooge wannabe Justin Welland. Sometimes it takes cold and ice to melt a frozen heart, but just as things heat up between these two misfits, a terrifying vision alerts Laura that no good deed goes unpunished, and Justin's life might be the price she has to pay.
This is a delightful re-telling of an old story with a new angle! The Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come never appears in the movies as having either gender, so the field is wide open to present it as female, as author Marian Perera has done. Not only that, but it's a bit of a revolving door, the ghost job being available to new candidates from time to time, if they're willing to pay the price of entry. Though Welland's home is austere, I still got a comfy-cozy feeling from the authors' description of it. Even more so when he tries his hand at decorating. I liked how Laura and Justin are cautiously aware of each other at first, the attraction coming later, and largely because they recognize their similarly 'lost' souls. Laura, having no reference in what acceptable behavior for ladies of the day should be, is free to not only experience things any way she sees fit, but even wield a mean poker in defense of her newfound love. Justin too, is well-crafted in that he's not so steeped in his parsimonious lifestyle that he doesn't know a good thing when he sees it. He makes room in his heart for the mysterious Laura, even though he has no reason to trust her or believe in her story until he sees proof with his own eyes.
I love Christmas stories, maybe because tales of snow and ice can be the most heartwarming of all!