Cover Image: Catching Christmas

Catching Christmas

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Member Reviews

When can driver Finn Parrish drove into the driveway of his next client, he sure didn’t know how much his life would change. Neither did he believe he would be doing so much extra for this client. Miss Callie was a special lady, but she needed family to take care of her. Family, Finn finds out it one granddaughter trying to work her job and take care of her grandmother too. And this time, calling a cab to take her grandmother to her Drs appointment was the only options.

I love this sweet story. Miss Callie may be old, but she knew exactly what she wanted. Her medicinal condition just keeps her from doing things on her own, so she decides the cab driver is the person to drive her to where she needs to go!

These amazing characters will capture your heart from the beginning. Miss Callie made the story fun and interesting. And I could tell Finn was a special guy from the beginning by the way he respected her. This was a different Christmas story, at least it was for me, but it is an amazing and wonderful story. A story that will warm your hearts for sure during this Christmas season.

A copy of this book was provided by Celebration Lit Tours and the author for me to read and review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions in this review are mine only.
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Well, I just couldn't stop turning the pages on this one. Imagine, a male cab driver, a female first-year law associate and a female senior with health issues. This was quite a unique set of characters. I can honestly say that I was amused from the first couple of chapters. 

Finn Parish, the cab driver, is dealing with some guilt issues of his own when he is paired up with Carrie, who is going through health issues, but doesn't quite understand that she has any. You will just have to read the book and be prepared to be entertained. There are a lot of funny moments and surprises you won't see coming.

I can honestly say that I warmed up to all the characters fairly soon. Sydney, the granddaughter, not so much at first. I was happy to see a change in Sydney by the end of the book. 

I loved the ending which wrapped everything up nicely and gave me a feeling of satisfaction and inspiration. I can't wait to read more by this author.

If you are looking for an extraordinary and unique Christmas story that will make you feel good long after you are done reading, this one is for you. Highly recommended.
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This Christmas novel has a different plot and characters than any you’ve ever read. Finn, a cab driver, helps an elderly lady, Callie, who seems out of it more often than she’s with it. Callie’s granddaughter, Sydney, a fledgling attorney struggles to keep up with all the work piled on her as well as help her ailing grandmother. The emotion-tugging story captured my heart and made me miss my mother even more. The story helps readers see needy, older people as individuals whom we should relate to and not ignore because life with them may be uncomfortable or inconvenient. Relationships can develop in unexpected ways and among unexpected people. The touching tale may bring some tears, but the story is well worth reading. It feels real, and it’s set at Christmas—a perfect time for such a story. I received a copy from Celebrate Lit. All opinions are my own.
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This was a lovely Christmas read in the real spirit of the holiday. We meet Finn, a grumpy cab driver unexpectedly saddled with a grandma who appears to have dementia. Initially Finn is very annoyed at the inconvenience Miss Callie brings, between needing help in and out. of the taxi with her wheelchair and being pushed to appointments. 

Meanwhile Callie's granddaughter, beleaguered first year attorney Sydney is barely getting by. She's struggling to survive at work and keep an eye on her grandma, who keeps escaping! Despite ripping in to Sydney and refusing drive Callie anymore, Finn's gruff exterior starts to dissolve as he works with Sydney to give the lady one final Christmas.

It was beautiful to see Finn's character start to heal and care again and although he seemed an unlikely match for  Sydney, the two complimented each other well by the end as she had reordered her priorities and he had thawed his heart. 

Compelling, heart-warming and well written, I wiped a tear away by the end.
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Terri Blackstock is one of my favorite authors, and I will continue to read her books, but I was disappointed in Catching Christmas.  Or maybe not disappointed, exactly, but depressed.  The story is a meaningful, timely reminder that Christmas isn’t always full of children’s laughter and extended family. Many people aren’t busy and festive this time of year. Too many people are alone.

Ms. Blackstock is a skilled writer, so it’s a well-crafted book (if you like first-person present-tense format), but it’s a sad, sad story about a man who neglected and avoided his own dying mother and a woman who is frantically focused on keeping her (lousy) job. They’re both mired in guilt, so they are doing their best to care for the elderly Callie.

Callie is an extremely well-written character, typical of many lonely and confused elderly people who find life especially hard in the holiday season.  Her fixation on finding her granddaughter a date for Christmas day and uncharacteristically rude comments (referred to as “losing her filter”) accurately represent a person in that stage of dementia.

Finn, the cab driver, is burned out after losing his restaurant. He’s spiraled down into depression and ended up driving a cab. Sydney, the granddaughter, has a precarious job at a rather shady law firm. While I could see how a new college graduate, burdened with student loans, might feel desperate to keep her job, it didn’t ring quite true for a smart young woman with moral standards.

The ending implies a more promising direction for both of the young people, which is encouraging. Overall, I think this is a meaningful and good book for reminding us of the frailty of life and our responsibility to care for our elderly family and friends.

I look forward to Terri Blackstock’s next book!
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Reading this during the Christmas holiday was a wonderful escape from the pressures of the holidays. Catching Christmas by Terri Blackstock was just the right mix of love, friendship, holiday spirit, and romance.  With the holidays I am under a lot of pressure just as many are, so escaping to Sydney, a busy lawyer  and Finn, former chef, current taxi driver, world was just what I needed.  Add in a grandmother in a wheelchair with maybe dementia and believe it or not you get a wonderful story.
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Catching Christmas tells the story of Finn - a well-meaning cab driver who befriends Callie - an old lady with dementia who needs his help, and Sydney - Callie's busy first-year associate niece. Having Callie in their lives teaches both Finn and Sydney something that they need to learn. She enriches their lives in the most unexpected ways.

The novel is perfect for snuggling up on the couch with a cup of hot cocoa in hand, having the twinkles of the Christmas lights in the background. It's uncomplicated in its message and plot, but this only makes it sweeter.

The great thing about this novel is the growth the characters go through. They really change throughout. Personally I didn't like much any of them at first, but that's good - this only means that there is room for development and that's what books are about. Even the holiday ones.

If you are a fan of festive reads - you'll enjoy this one! Just bear in mind that it's not like a Hallmark romance. The romantic element is there, but it's not really the main plot line, which offers way more depth than a typical romantic novel.

I have kindly received an advanced copy of this book from NetGalley and Thomas Nelson in exchange of a fair review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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I have never read Blackstock before but my oldest daughter highly recommended her.  A little predictable, but still a fun read over Christmas break.
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Enjoyable Christmas story by Terri Blackstock. Would re-read it again during next Christmas holiday season!
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A short sweet enjoyable Christmas read. I enjoyed getting to know Callie, Finn and Sydney. I was pleasantly surprised that it is set in my hometown of St. Louis, that was probably my favorite element of the book. Its quick pace and switching back and forth between Sydney was a little much for me and I would liked a little more backstory on the characters but all in all I did enjoy the story. The ending was nice and believable and it’s perfect for a quick easy read over the holidays. 

I received this book from NetGalley and the publisher and was not required to post a review. All thoughts are my own.
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Catching Christmas, by Terri Blackstock, is a truly memorable holiday tale with endearing characters, relevant themes, and a sprinkling of humor and romance. It is an engaging story of faith, love, choices, and second chances. Touching and well-written, this story is entertaining from the first sentence to the last.
Writing in the first person point of view, Ms. Blackstock ensures that that the reader experiences the story through the perspectives of the characters themselves. This narrative style makes the story relatable and engaging. The characters are believable, they are likable, and they make the story shine. Their struggles, insecurities, fears, and beliefs are authentic and moving. Even though they endure real struggles that test their assumptions and their faith, the light of God’s love breaks through with the restorative power of grace and second chances. With warmth and heart, this book also places a significant emphasis on family and friends, and the ways in which they support, encourage, and provide for one another.
Our lives can certainly be full of interruptions, and these interruptions are almost always inconvenient. However, interruptions can be viewed as obstacles or they can be valued as opportunities. Catching Christmas explores the reality that inconvenient interruptions are often opportunities to help others, to practice compassion, and to extend grace in difficult circumstances. 
Catching Christmas is a meaningful work of fiction that explores the importance of priorities and purpose during the bustle of the holiday season. It is a story that entertains, uplifts, and inspires. I could easily enjoy re-reading this book in the future and sharing it with my friends too. I sincerely recommend it to all readers.
*I received a copy of this novel through the author, Netgalley, and Celebrate Lit. The review I have written is voluntary and contains opinions that are entirely my own.
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Terri Blackstock takes a break her typical mystery and their Christian series to do something a little lighter and she does amazingly well. Catching Christmas was the tale of a taxi cab driver, a woman suffering from dementia and her granddaughter who is a lawyer, trapped in a job she hates. The story is about family, love, searching for something more and just figuring out life. I loved the story and characters.
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Can they help an elderly woman get her Christmas wish?

To say that I am only used to Terri Blackstock's suspense novels would be an understatement. I had NO idea that she ever stepped out of that genre. But, when I saw that she was the author of Catching Christmas I thought I would take the chance and step out of my usual limit on reading only a select few holiday-themed books during the season. I'm glad I did.

Catching Christmas is sweet, funny, poignant, and a bit of a tear-jerker. Believe me, you'll run the gamut of emotions at the hands of Terri Blackstock's delightful characters. And if you've ever loved someone with dementia etc. this book will be particularly touching. 

The characters in this book are truly something else. I fell in love with the blunt wanna-be-gruff-but-is-really-a-softy Finn right away. Sidney took me a little longer to warm up to but just about anyone can understand the sheer pressure of caring for an elderly relative while trying to hold down a demanding full-time job. And then there's Callie, your heart just goes out to her as she faces declining health while trying to remember “where are my manners?” She's a sweet lady with a faith as big as the ocean, a faith that reaches out and touches the granddaughter she loves and the hurting cabbie she takes into her heart. 

Catching Christmas is a fairly quick read but it's a story that will linger long after the wrapping paper has been thrown away and the twinkle lights have been put away for another year...

(I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are entirely my own.)
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Catching Christmas is a beautiful and awesome read for the Christmas season – or anytime, for that matter, because it’s message of hope and redemption knows no season. Terri Blackstock has written a gem of a book – quirky, emotional, romantic, and downright funny at times – and totally different from anything I could have ever expected. Jesus is clearly seen in this story.

“Callie has made herself a daily fixture in my life. She’s like gum on the bottom of my shoe. There’s no way to get it off without making a mess.” (Finn)

Catching Christmas revolves around three characters: Sydney, a young lady with a stress filled, thankless job at a cutthroat law firm; Finn, the reluctant hero, a gourmet chef turned taxicab driver; and Callie, Sydney’s grandmother. Callie is the heart and soul of this story, and when Finn responded to the dispatcher’s call that sent him to Callie’s home, there’s no way he could have anticipated what a pivotal moment in his life that would be.

In the hands of Blackstock’s skilled writing, a story that has the potential to be sad doesn’t come across that way at all. There’s a good balance between humor and poignancy, with some delightfully funny moments – such as the day Finn took Callie shopping. 

“I feel like I’m getting to know Callie’s Jesus a little better, even though I’m doing all the talking. But he speaks volumes in the way he listens.” (Finn)

An anonymous quote that I’ve frequently heard so aptly applies to Callie: “Preach the gospel at all times, and if necessary, use words.” Catching Christmas reminds us of what’s most important in life, the value of savoring relationships, and of the far-reaching testimony our everyday interactions with people can have. 

Normally a writer of suspense, this is Blackstock’s first Christmas story, and I hope many more will follow. Highly recommended.

I received a copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.
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This is a novella, it took me about 2.5 hours to read.  It has a good lesson to it, but it made me depressed.  Finn is a taxi driver who is angry and ornery.  Sydney is stressed  with her job and afraid she might lose it.  On top of that stress, her Grandmother Callie is not well.  Callie is the best and most likeable of all the characters.  She is sweet, if not somewhat confused.  Finn is drawn into helping Callie.  He takes her to the doctor and shopping, etc.  Sydney doesn't realize how bad things are with her grandmother and she is wrapped up in work.  

The writing is easy to read, but when bad things happen to so many of the characters, it's hard for me to want to read it.  Finn is angry and has issues he hasn't dealt with.  Sydney is facing a boss who is using her as a scapegoat, a client who expects her to do illegal things to get his spoiled son out of trouble, and then trying to care for her sick grandmother.  In the end, there is a nice lesson, but overall the book is sad.  I don't like sad.   That's the biggest reason I gave it only 3 stars.  Otherwise, the lesson of the story, the writing, and such are Hallmark worthy.
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I adored this book. This was the perfect heartwarming story to read during the Christmas season. I loved how the characters were developed, flawed and truly human.  And the storyline had me laughing and in tears. I couldn’t put this book down, &’ fact, I finished it in a matter of hours. I definitely recommend this book!
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There is something so tender and sweet about this story. I loved getting to know Miss Callie and fell in love with her. She may be elderly but she has a heart of gold. Miss Callie is forgetful at times and has started to depend on a cab driver named Finn. What will the doctor discover is wrong with her?

It wasn't by accident that Finn got the call to pick Miss Callie up one day. You can feel his frustration as he realizes Miss Callie can't tell him much about where he needs to go. Finn has a special place in his heart for Miss Callie who reminds him of his mother. Does he feel guilt over his mother's passing? When he finally meets Miss Callie's granddaughter there is a bit of animosity towards her. 

Sydney is doing her best trying to keep her job as a first year law student and taking care of her grandmother. The author does a great job of allowing readers to understand the desperation each character feels. Sydney is doing the best she can, while Finn has suddenly become Miss Callie's personal driver. I loved how Finn has become attached to Miss Callie and I know there is a reason he has been brought into her life.

When I get to the part in the story where the doctor explains to Sydney and Finn what Miss Callie has, I dropped the book. Oh how I cried because Miss Callie has become like a family member to me. Miss Callie is a woman everyone loves. She has a generous spirit and loves God. It will be hard not to think of her because through this story, she has opened my eyes to Christmas. Her compassion for others is seen throughout the story and her connection with a stranger will change his life in many ways. Sydney can see how much her grandmother loved her. Will she find a way to be happy and follow her heart? It has been an honor to read a book by a very gifted author that has shown me that people do care.

This has been a very well written story with characters that seem like family. I loved watching how Finn grew in his faith and how Sydney realizes what her priorities need to be. This story is set at Christmas time but I think it could be read anytime of the year. The message of love, compassion and the gentle spirit of a special woman makes this story one that you won't forget.

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.
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Catching Christmas by Terri Blackstock is a fabulous feel-good story with humor and romance. I absolutely loved it. Finn is funny and so relatable. What woman wouldn’t fall for a guy who is kind and generous to an elderly woman suffering from dementia? Sydney is such a sweet woman doing her best to just keep up with the demands of work and elderly caregiving. Best of all, Miss Callie is so lovable I felt like I could reach through the pages to touch her. Such an amazing story of expectations turning into blessings unimaginable. Terri Blackstock never fails to deliver a great book and Catching Christmas is a perfect example of that.
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I will admit it started a bit slow for me but after the first couple of chapters this laugh out loud book had me flipping the pages, just to see what in the world Miss Callie would do or say next.

Tackling some tough issues, especially at Christmas, Catching Christmas really did come across as warm and genuine. Life isn’t always easy but God is able to work through us, even in the hard times. And humor can always be found. Let me state that in no way did I find this book depressing. It was thought provoking, sometimes sad, but I always felt that redemption was just over the horizon so there was hope.

Ms. Blackstock’s characters were very well developed and in need of help, as most of us are. This made them realistic. We learned about priorities, and making time for our loved ones. It was difficult to read sometimes as I wanted to shake Sydney and wake her up to that truth. But to see her grow was as a person was really nice.

With light romance and much laughter, I can highly recommend this book as a sweet Christmas read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.
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I received my copy of Catching Christmas a few months back, but have purposely waited until this week to read and review it.  I figured it would put me in the right frame of mind for the holidays, and I assumed correctly.

Reading about the last days of sweet, old Miss Callie put a sweet, holiday smile on my face.  How she constantly worries over her granddaughter, Sydney, and the beautiful bond she creates with a lonely cab driver named Finn.  No, this is not an action-packed story by any means, but it does remind not only Sydney and Finn, but all of us, what is really important in life, when life is all said and done.  

Miss Callie's character is sweet, sassy, and bittersweet all rolled into one.  Reading about her decline in health brought back painful memories of my own grandmother's decline before she passed away a few short years ago.  Watching a loved one having to go through something like that when there is not much you can do is one of the hardest things to endure, and poor Sydney has to learn this lesson all alone, all while trying to juggle an incredibly demanding job that is hanging on by a thread.  

Finn is one of those characters that is rough around the edges, but has a heart of gold.  Being a huge Gilmore Girls fan, when author Terri Blackstock describes Finn as a Luke lookalike, for the rest of the book I could envision Luke, which made me fall in love with Finn all the more!  I also loved how Miss Callie's faith was not pushed on either Sydney or Finn but lived out, which is how faith should be!

All in all, I really enjoyed Catching Christmas.  The writing was good, with an easy flow, which made it a quick, easy read, the characters were likable, and going with the Christmas theme, though having a sad note, put you in the right heart for the season.
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