Rivetti explores family, relationships, adaptability, change, and acceptance in this immersive thriller. It’s Christmas Eve. With festive tables set and a roaring fire warming her Northern California Victorian house parlor, Adamaria is looking forward to celebrating a cozy Christmas with her daughter Gracie and the latter’s two little girls. When a stranger sneaks into the house in the early hours of Christmas morning, Adamaria finds her world turning upside down. Told in third-person omniscient perspective, the narrative is immersed in holiday spirit. With a keen sensitivity to familial relationships, Rivetti makes good use of her thrilling plot, keeping readers thoroughly invested. The pacing is swift, the prose crisp, and the characterization top-notch. A close-knit family, an adorable pup, deft use of foreshadowing, and a storyline that’s just complicated enough make this an immersive read. A winner.
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