Blue Christmas

Blue Christmas

4.0 106
by Mary Kay Andrews

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'Tis the week before Christmas, and antiques dealer Weezie Foley is in a frenzy to do up her shop right for the Savannah historical district decorating contest, which she fully intends to win. Her motif is Graceland Blue Christmas, with lots of tinsel, an aluminum tree, and enough tacky retro doodads to fill the Grand Ole Opry. But no sooner is she certain she's


'Tis the week before Christmas, and antiques dealer Weezie Foley is in a frenzy to do up her shop right for the Savannah historical district decorating contest, which she fully intends to win. Her motif is Graceland Blue Christmas, with lots of tinsel, an aluminum tree, and enough tacky retro doodads to fill the Grand Ole Opry. But no sooner is she certain she's one-upped the trendy shop around the corner when Weezie notices things going strangely missing from her display.

Despite the petty burglaries of her mysterious midnight visitor, Weezie still has high hopes for the holiday. Perhaps even an engagement ring is in the offing from her chef boyfriend, though Daniel, usually moody around the yuletide, seems even more distant than ever. Throw in some seasonal eccentricities from Weezie's decidedly odd family, a miraculous 1950s Christmas-tree pin, and a little help from the King (Elvis!) himself, and even Scrooge would have to agree there's real magic in the Savannah air this Christmas

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Weezie Foley has high hopes for Christmas this year. She's working herself into a frenzy decorating her antique shop to win the Savannah historic district decorating contest; she's searching for the perfect present for her chef boyfriend, Daniel; she planning Christmas dinner for the first time for her and Daniel's families. Add a mysterious visitor to the shop and a missing Christmas tree pin and it's almost more than Weezie can handle. Andrews's delightful characters come to life thanks to Keating's reading, which offers just the right mixture of Southern twang and upbeat lilt. She nicely captures the humor that runs through the novel and the variety of characters that populate Weezie's life. The male voices tend to come across as hoarse instead of masculine, but this doesn't detract from the overall enjoyment of a delightful Christmas tale full of memorable characters. This audio is the perfect gift this holiday season. Simultaneous release with the HarperCollins hardcover. (Nov.)

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Andrews brings back characters from her best-selling Savannah novels (Savannah Breeze; Savannah Blues) for some holiday fun. Antiques dealer Weezie is fervently working to get her shop ready for the holidays, but she is distracted by a series of mysterious break-ins at her home, truck, and shop. Oddly enough, the only things missing are quirky display pieces and trays of party food. Meanwhile, Weezie's boyfriend, Daniel, hates Christmas, and his sour attitude is ruining any chance of a good time. And who is the mysterious bag lady who's decided to sleep in Weezie's display window? Readers who haven't read the other Savannah books will find themselves wanting more of Andrews's fresh, funny style. For all fiction collections. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 7/06.] Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Savannah antiques maven Eloise "Weezie" Foley returns to solve a Christmas mystery. Facing stiff competition from her "nearest and queerest" neighbors (rival shopkeepers Manny and Cookie), Maisie's Daisy proprietress Weezie pulls out all the stops to win Savannah's annual Christmas-decoration contest. She faces an early upset, though, when her fruit-festooned store windows are ruined, with all the edibles gone missing. Could it be the work of hungry birds? Or sabotage? Inspiration strikes again after she discovers a blue vintage Christmas-tree pin at an auction and uses it to create a '50s-themed kitsch extravaganza that wins her first prize-and perhaps some unwanted attention. Strange things start to happen soon after. Her beloved mutt Jethro runs away, only to be returned safely by an anonymous Good Samaritan who leaves the dog in Weezie's truck. Food (and nothing else) for a holiday party is stolen from her house, and a strange homeless woman is discovered sleeping in her "Blue Christmas" store window. Meanwhile, her grumpy chef boyfriend Daniel refuses to get into the holiday spirit, spending all his time toiling at his successful restaurant, Guale. Weezie suspects it is not work that is keeping him from enjoying himself, but rather bad memories of his childhood abandonment by his mother. Eager to spread some cheer and play peacemaker, she invites Daniel's remaining family to her house for Christmas Eve, where, not surprisingly, chaos ensues. Jethro gobbles (and vomits back up) a hot bowl of fresh crab dip, Daniel's vegan sister-in-law brings tofurky and two guests end up in the emergency room. The rest of this fluffy follow-up to Savannah Breeze (2006) is swiftly tied up asprofessional adversaries make nice, mysterious strangers are revealed to be long-lost loved ones and a way-overdue wedding proposal is enthusiastically accepted. Appealing character-driven holiday fair, with the slightest of plots.
Herald-Sun (Durham NC))
"A fun and festive read."
Herald-Sun (Durham NC)
"A fun and festive read."
Herald-Sun (Durham
“A fun and festive read.”
Daytona Beach News-Journal
“For the fun at heart, this is a must in the Christmas stocking.”
Herald-Sun (Durham)
“A fun and festive read.”

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Blue Christmas [Revised]

Chapter One

I was just hot-gluing the last popcorn-andcranberry strand to the second of two five-foot-high topiary Christmas trees when my best friend came breezing into Maisie's Daisy.

BeBe Loudermilk stopped dead in her tracks and gazed around the first floor of my antiques shop, wrinkling her nose in distaste.

She gestured toward the half-empty crates of apples, oranges, and kumquats scattered around my worktable, at the halved pineapples and the pomegranates spilling out of grocery sacks, and at the freshly fallen drifts of popcorn littering the floor.

"What the hell?" she said dramatically. There are very few statements BeBe makes that are not laden with drama.

"Are you now turning to fruit vending as a sideline?" She shook her head sadly. "And I thought you were doing so well with the antiques."

"Christmas decorations," I said, pressing the popcorn strings onto the surface of the topiary tree, which I'd already covered with what seemed like a whole orchard full of tiny green crab apples and kumquats. "For the historic district decorating contest."

"Ohhh," she said, drawing it out.

With one tentative fingertip, she tapped the tree I'd completed, knocking off a kumquat, which rolled onto the floor, joining half a dozen other pieces of fallen fruit.

"Cute," she said dismissively.

"Cute? Is that all you can say? Cute? I've spent three whole days with this project. I've blown a good three hundred dollars on fresh fruit and nuts and Styrofoam forms, and strung what feels like ten miles of popcorn and cranberries. And just look at my hands!"

I held them out for her to see. There were needle pricks on my fingertips, hot-glue burns on my palms, and multiple bandages from self-inflicted skewerings.

"Criminal," BeBe said. "But why?"

"Because," I said, "I am, by God, going to win the commercial division decorating contest this year, even if I have to cover the entire surface of this building with every piece of fresh fruit in Savannah."

"Again . . . why would you bother? I mean, what's in it for you?"

"Pride," I said. "Last year I really thought I had it sewn up. Remember, I did that whole deal with the gilded palmetto fronds and magnolia leaf swags? And I had all the dried okra pods and pinecones? And I didn't even make honorable mention? They gave first place to that stupid boutique on Whitaker. Can you believe they won with those lame-o kudzu vines and hokey bird's nests and stuffed cardinals? I mean, stuffed birds! It was absolutely Hitchcockian!"

"A tragic oversight, I'm sure," BeBe said, looking around the shop. "Remind me again why it was so crucial that I come over here today?"

"You promised to watch the shop," I said. "There's an auction at Trader Bob's, over in Hardeeville, that starts at noon. This close to Christmas, I can't afford to close up while I go on a buying trip. I was also hoping you might help me put up all the decorations before I leave in an hour."

She sighed. "All right. What are we doing?"

I gestured toward the pair of topiary trees. "Help me drag these outside. They're going in those big cast-iron urns by the front doors. Then we've got to tack up the over-door plaque with the pineapples and lemons and limes, and swag the grapevines around the show windows. I've got two kinds of and red, and we'll hot-glue those once the vines are in place. Then the only thing left is the window display. But I'll set that up once I get back from Hardeeville."

With a maximum amount of huffing and puffing, and some very un-Christmas-like swearing when BeBe broke an acrylic nail, we managed to get the decorations in place.

"There," I said, standing out on the sidewalk, gazing at our masterpiece. "Take that, Babalu!"

"Babalu who?"

"Babalu them," I said, pointing across Troup Square.

"My nearest and queerest competition."

"That's not very nice," she said. "I thought you loved gay men."

"You don't know Manny and Cookie," I told her.

Manny Alvarez and Cookie Parker had opened their shop on Harris Street the previous spring. Manny was a retired landscape designer from Delray Beach, Florida, and Cookie? Well, Cookie claimed he'd been a Broadway chorus boy in the road show of Les Misérables, but he was fifty if he was a day, going bald, and weighed close to three hundred pounds.

"I tried to be nice and welcoming. I took flowers over there on their opening day, invited them to dinner, but since the minute they opened, they've been trying to put me out of business," I told BeBe. "They've tried to snake some of my best pickers. They called up the city and complained about my customers parking in loading zones; they even went to the gift mart and came back with the exact same line of aromatherapy candles and bath salts I carry, and now they sell them for two bucks cheaper."

"The nerve!" BeBe said. She craned her neck to look across the square at their shop. "Looks like they're working on their Christmas decorations too. Must be half a dozen men swarming around over there. Wow, look. They've got like a phone company truck with one of those cherry-picker buckets hanging lights along the front of the building."

"I'm sure whatever they do will be gaudy as hell," I said, flouncing back into the shop with BeBe following close behind. "Remember what they did for Halloween? The whole façade of the building was a red devil, with the shop's windows lit up with yellow lights as the devil's eyes."

"Hmm," BeBe said noncommittally.

"They blinked off and on all night. I thought I was having a seizure the first time I looked over there and saw it. It damn near drove me nuts," I said. "And it was so over the top."

"Not Savannah at all," BeBe agreed. "But flashy. You gotta give 'em that."

Blue Christmas [Revised]. Copyright © by Mary Kay Andrews. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Mary Kay Andrews is the New York Times bestselling author of 24 novels, most recently The Weekenders, as well as 10 critically acclaimed mysteries. A former reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, she lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

Brief Biography

Atlanta, Georgia
Date of Birth:
July 27, 1954
Place of Birth:
Tampa, Florida
B.A. in newspaper journalism, University of Georgia, 1976

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Blue Christmas Now with More Holiday Cheer Edition) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 106 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just love Mary Kay Andrewa and this group of characters is my favorite! I hope to see more from her! Perfect plot line for anChristmas Novel! I highly suggest it if you are an Andrews fan.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
With the exceptions of a few f bombs which to me ,, no reason to use them near the end i enjoyed the book had to keep coming back to read what was next,
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cute story that will get you in the holiday spirit. A little light mystery and romance too.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a great story with 'spots' of humor that made me laugh outloud!! I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a great story!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Light Christmas reading with an enjoyable story line.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you like Andrews' books you' ll love this one too.. always a twist!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a quick, lighthearted read for the holidays. There was a perfect combination of mystery, comedy and romance, that made it difficult to put down. A must read for the holidays.
CrystalMichelle More than 1 year ago
A great story I will for sure read again and again over the holidays.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like practically everything she has written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novella by Mary Kay Andrews will keep you smiling for a very long time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book!!! I loved it, great read for around the holidays! Or just any time!! Keeps you on the edge of yor seat!!
French_Hen More than 1 year ago
This was a very easy read to get you right in the holiday spirit! I highly recommend it, especially if you have enjoyed any of her other books!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fun, easy read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Christmas Eve dinner is side splitting funny! BeBe and Weezie are the Lucy and Ethel of the 21st century!
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