Christmas Presents

This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Buy on Amazon Buy on Buy on
*This page contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app

To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date 24 Oct 2023 | Archive Date 30 Sep 2023
Penzler Publishers | Mysterious Press

Talking about this book? Use #ChristmasPresents #NetGalley. More hashtag tips!


Instead of presents this Christmas, a true crime podcaster is opening up a cold case…

Madeline Martin has built a life for herself as the young owner of a thriving business, The Next Chapter Bookshop, despite her tragic childhood and now needing to care for her infirm father. When Harley Granger, a failed novelist turned true crime podcaster, drifts into her shop in the days before Christmas, he seems intent on digging up events that Madeline would much rather forget. She’s the only surviving victim of Evan Handy, the man who was convicted of murdering her best friend Steph, and is suspected in the disappearance of two sisters, also good friends of Madeline’s, who have been missing for nearly a decade. It’s an investigation that has obsessed her father Sheriff James Martin right up until his stroke took his faculties.

Harley Granger has a gift for seeing things that others miss. He wasn’t much of a novelist, but his work as a true crime author and podcaster has earned him fame and wealth—and some serious criticism for his various unethical practices. Still, visiting Little Valley to be closer to his dying father has caused him to look into a case that many people think is closed—and some want reopened. And he has a lot of questions about the night Stephanie Cramer was killed, Ainsley and Sam Wallace disappeared, and Madeline Martin was left for dead, bleeding out on a riverbank.

Since Evan Handy went to jail, three other young women have gone missing, most recently a young college dropout named Lolly. Five young women missing in the same area in a decade. Are they connected? Was Evan Handy innocent after all? Or was there some else there that night? Someone who is still satisfying his dark appetites?

As Christmas approaches and a blizzard bears down, Madeline and her childhood friend Badger return to a past they both hoped was dead—to find the missing Lolly and to answer questions that have haunted them both, discovering that the truth is more terrible and much closer to home than they think.

Coupling a picturesque, cozy setting with a deeply unsettling suspenseful plot, Christmas Presents is a chilling seasonal novella that can be enjoyed all year long.

About the Author: Lisa Unger is a New York Times and internationally bestselling author. With books published in thirty-three languages and millions of copies sold worldwide, she is widely regarded as a master of suspense.

Instead of presents this Christmas, a true crime podcaster is opening up a cold case…

Madeline Martin has built a life for herself as the young owner of a thriving business, The Next Chapter...

Available Editions

EDITION Hardcover
ISBN 9781613164518
PRICE $23.95 (USD)

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (PDF)
Send to Kindle (PDF)
Download (PDF)

Average rating from 696 members

Featured Reviews

Christmas Presents by Lisa Unger Fast paced mystery, suspense, serial killer(s), a true crime author, a bookstore owner who survived a vicious attack with a love interest, some family drama and of an ending that you thought you know what was coming......but then.
Maddie and Badger were favorite characters. The podcast epilogue was quite interesting. The Christmas Presents were truly inspired,
Thank you to the author, Penzler Publishers, Mysterious Press, and NetGalley for the opportunity to preview the book.

Was this review helpful?

Great holiday read and perfect stocking stuffer for the mystery lover. A wonderful book to add to the holiday displays on your New Books shelves this year. Readers will be enraptured by the story unfolding both in the current timeline and in the past as unraveling the mystery will save lives and solve a decade old crime.

Was this review helpful?

This book was so good and I didn't see it ending the way that it did. Madeline is living with survivor's guilt and I can imagine why. Evan Handy is convicted of murdering her friend, almost killing her and the disappearance of two of her friends. A crime podcaster leads her to find answers when someone else disappears and when he comes around stirring up all of the bad memories. Christmas Presents kept me guessing and I was surprised with the ending, but loved it. We will definitely be ordering for our library and I will be recommending to my patrons that love mysteries and suspense!

Was this review helpful?

Oh boy! This un-put-downable tale from Lisa Unger kept me guessing. Halfway through I thought I’d figured out who the killer was since “bookworms make the best detectives”. However, the author had more twists and secrets to reveal before this story was over. Note that this is a book to be enjoyed anytime of year, not just at Christmas.

Was this review helpful?

Readers who liked this book also liked: