Solve by Christmas

Solve by Christmas

by Amber Schamel, Deirdre Lockhart

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Overview

Solve by Christmas by Amber Schamel

When sabotage threatens the Rudin Sugar Factory, Detective Jasper Hollock believes this will be his first real case. But dear Mr. Rudin—the only father Jasper has ever known—holds a different assignment for his private investigator. 

“I’ve struck a deal with God, Jasper, and you’re my angel.”

Mr. Rudin charges Jasper to build a “case” of reasons for his employer to continue his life. If he fails, Mr. Rudin will end it in suicide on Christmas night.

As the incidents at the factory become life threatening, Jasper’s attempts at dissuading Mr. Rudin prove futile. Time is ticking. Jasper must solve both cases by Christmas before Mr. Rudin and the company are dragged to perdition.

“Amber Schamel's engaging prose weaves together not one, but two edge-of-your-seat threads in this historical mystery. With the hero racing against time to solve the two cases readers will be kept guessing as they attempt to crack the case. “  ~ Laura V. Hilton author of Christmas Admirer (Whitaker House)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780999176719
Publisher: Vision Writer Publications
Publication date: 09/01/2017
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 116
File size: 167 KB

About the Author

Amber Schamel writes riveting stories that bring HIStory to life. She has a passion for history, books and her Savior. This combination results in what her readers call "historical fiction at its finest". A homeschool graduate from a family of 12 children, Amber found her calling early in life. First published at age 21, she has continued to hone her craft and has been awarded the 2017 CSPA Book of the Year Award in Historical Fiction. Between ministry, family and working in their family-owned businesses, Amber loves to connect with readers and hang out on Goodreads with other bookish peoples. Find her on the Stitches Thru Time blog, or on any of the major social media sites. Amber is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers. http://amberschamel.com/ Newsletter & updates: http://www.amberschamel.com/newsletter-signup.html Blogs - http://stitchesthrutime.blogspot.com/ http://www.hhhistory.com/ http://amberschamel.blogspot.com/ Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAmberSchamel Twitter - @AmberSchamel https://twitter.com/AmberSchamel Pinterest - http://pinterest.com/AmberDSchamel/ Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7073165.Amber_Schamel Amazon - http://www.amazon.com/Amber-Schamel/e/B00CIXK91M

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Dedication................................................................................... 1

Acknowledgments................................................................... 5

Author’s Note............................................................................ 6

Chapter One................................................................................. 8

Chapter Two............................................................................. 16

Chapter Three........................................................................... 24

Chapter Four............................................................................ 32

Chapter Five.............................................................................. 42

Chapter Six................................................................................. 48

Chapter Seven........................................................................... 62

Chapter Eight............................................................................ 77

Chapter Nine............................................................................. 88

Chapter Ten............................................................................. 102

Chapter Eleven...................................................................... 113

Chapter Twelve..................................................................... 127

Chapter Thirteen................................................................... 137

Chapter Fourteen................................................................. 143

Chapter Fifteen...................................................................... 151

Chapter Sixteen..................................................................... 162

Chapter Seventeen............................................................... 172

Chapter Eighteen.................................................................. 180

Excerpt from The Swaddling Clothes......................... 186

Customer Reviews

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Solve by Christmas 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
SeasonsofGrace More than 1 year ago
This was probably one of the best Christmas books I've read this year. I enjoyed the story, the characters, the way the author brought it all to a climatic ending. Amber did such a great job, I would love to read more of her books. It was a Sherlock Holmes type double mystery. Not only does Jasper have to figure out who might be sabotaging the sugar factory, but he also has to find a reason for the owner of the sugar company Mr. Rudin not to commit suicide on Christmas Day. Mr Rudin is like a father to him, but has grown discouraged with life. He wants Jasper to give him a reason to live. The book was really interesting and kept my attention. Its fairly short, so doesn't take to long to read. I think you'll be especially happy and a bit surprised at the ending. I think my favorite character was Denny, the errand boy. He was on the ball, persistent, and such a great character. He was an orphan but making the best of his life. I would highly recommend this book! I received a copy courtesy of Celebrate Lit and the Author. All opinions are strictly my own. I was not asked to review positively.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm giving this sweet and surprising book 4 stars. It was not at all what I was expecting. Don't ask me what I was expecting, because I can't for the life of me remember, but this... this was not it. This was much better. Usually I don't go for the historical mysteries as much, it's not my cup of.... eggnog???.... (lame Christmas joke alert!) but this one was nice. It was funny, and serious. Sweet and cynical. A balanced book. I loved how each character was his own person, (or her own person...) and the dynamics were great. The cover is pretty snazzy, and you guys know that (much to my detriment, I suppose) I am all about those covers! I was shocked by all the twists, and while I suspected the culprit a little bit, I still kept getting sucked in by the rabbit trails. All in all, a delightful little read, with a sweet non-romance romance, and an ending that leaves me satisfied, but also leaves the door open for sequels. It's not something I think I would buy, but I enjoyed reading it. (Stick with it through those first few chapters...) It's also not super-Christmasy... it talks about chcristmas but if you're looking for a book about mistletoe and holly and presents under the tree or any of that jazz... well for goodness sake! There are lives at stake here! (And wow, reading back through this I can see that today is one of my more ADD days. Sorry bout that!) I received this book from Celebrate Lit as part of their blogging program.
SBMC More than 1 year ago
What a fun read! This is the first book I’ve read by Amber Schamel and I’m totally glad that I went out on a limb on a new-to-me author. I don’t read many mysteries so the book was also an adventure! It is a well-written book with a nice plot filled with twists and turns and great characters. It is a fast-moving book and anyone who enjoys a good mystery will surely enjoy this one. The setting is 1913 in Denver, Colorado. Jasper is a private investigator working for a sugar/candy company. The owner of the company, almost a surrogate father to Jasper, is in desperate straits emotionally and his world starts collapsing in on itself as sabotage occurs at his factory. The events and clues leading to the end are cleverly lined up and the perpetrator is not known until the very end of the book. Boy, Ms. Schamel had me guessing at every turn of the page whom it could be! Jasper, as the hero, is keenly intelligent but socially awkward and very peculiar. Despite his eccentricities, his heart is loyal and loving and genuine. His devotion to Mr. Rudin, the owner of the factory, is remarkable and his tenacity at trying to solve the mysteries is admirable. There is only a possible hint of romance towards the end....maybe there will be a sequel to expand upon their relationship? There is also a deep spiritual truth that comes out at the end of the story as God uses Jasper to show Mr. Rudin the unfathomable grace and forgiveness that is ours to have in Christ Jesus. That conversation between the men is simple yet absolutely powerful and true. I received a copy of this book through Celebrate Lit Tours and also from the author. I was not required to write a favorable review. All comments and opinions are solely my own.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
Solve by Christmas is my first introduction to Amber Schamel's writing. I will definitely be looking for more by her in the future. I thought this book to be captivating. I enjoyed the mystery and suspense and did not find it to be at all predictable. I wanted to keep turning the pages to find out what would happen next. I just love detective Jasper Hollock. He is such a fun and lovable character. Going back in time to December 1913 in Denver, Colorado, makes for a wonderful scenery leading up to Christmas. The author used vivid descriptions of the area that made me feel like I was right there being part of solving the mystery. There is quite a bit of faith and inspiration element of the story that made me really think. A very good, quick, clean and inspiring read. I give this book 4 1/2 stars and hope to read more by this author soon. I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion
Laundry_Whispers More than 1 year ago
When this book came up for review with CelebrateLit was really looking forward a cozy Christmas mystery. A little drama with Mr. Rudin’s situation and a lot of suspense with the other mystery happening at the factory. I knew it would be a quick read and light on the depth of detail simply due to the short number of pages to the book. A Cozy Christmas Mystery Novella if you will. I got some of that but if I am going to be honest, I didn’t get near what I wanted or expected. I left the book feeling disappointed. Not because I knew ‘whodunit’ so early on, I can’t begin to hold that against books. You’d have to be a notable master of suspense to keep me guessing to the end. It does happen but it’s so rare that well… Yeah. The book had a feel as though Clue met up with Nancy Drew or The Hardy Boys. They usually kept me dragging along for a minute but I cut my teeth for mystery with them and Sweet Valley Twins. I got that vibe with a mix of Doyle’s wannabe Sherlock Holmes in this book. The attention to the finest detail, the withholding of any clues from the reader (and sidekick) and the arrogance of the detective. The Holmes mirroring just didn’t work for me unfortunately. That finesse that Doyle had is hard to recreate. With just a touch of change in the subject matter I’d come nearer to recommended this as a young adult read. The bottom line is that what I need to fall in love with a story and the characters was lacking. I didn’t get a feel for the characters, who they were, why they did what they did, and how they thought and felt. They weren’t developed enough for me to care two wits about them. Why did Jasper talk to his Counsel of Mirrors? I think there could have been a pretty awesome backstory or even side story there. I didn’t really get a feel for his personality either. He frequently came off as a arrogant twit with delusions of grandeur greater than himself. Why? What made him that way? What was truly the driving force behind Mr. Rudin making his deal with God? Some of that was there but it just didn’t fill in the gaps. There were way too many gaps for the characters to tell a story that would hold water for me and make me want to engage with it. I will say that the audience for this book is out there. I do feel unfortunate that it does not include me. I wanted desperately to love it but I can only say that it was OK and I liked parts of it. I was provided a complimentary copy of this book by CelebrateLit. I was not compensated for this review and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.
MelissaF More than 1 year ago
This was a really good read. I enjoyed it and the spirit of Christmas and reconciliation in the book. Jasper is a quirky character, I can relate:) He has some oddities and I appreciate that about him. He is determined to do his job and do it well. He is a busy man with all that is going on in this book. Denny sure endeared himself to me as well, Jasper's little unwanted sidekick. Obviously, this book deals with a pretty heavy issue but it is written in such away that it didn't bring the story down and you have this sense of hope throughout. I found this book to be  a charming and engaging read. A copy of this book was given to my through the Celebrate Lit Team. All opinions are my own. 
Virginiaw More than 1 year ago
This was a fun historical mystery. I really enjoyed all the characters but did have trouble understanding Mr. Rudin, who wasn’t sure if he wanted to live or die. That is the sad part of the story but there was a lot of light hearted things going on also. Detective Jasper Hollock was a great detective.and a wonderful guy. He wanted to seem hardened but was soft. I received this book from Celebratelit for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
conniet729 More than 1 year ago
This is a new to me author. I loved her style of writing. The characters are well developed. I loved that this book kept me guess about what was going to happen next. There are some discussions of suicide (although not carried out) which did not bother me too much, but I wanted to make sure that it is brought up in my review. Detective Jasper was odd. But I liked his character. I would love to read more from this author. I was provided a copy of this book through the Celebrate Lit blogging program, all opinions are my own.
annelr More than 1 year ago
Solve by Christmas is Amber Schamel's first foray into the historical mystery genre and she did a great job with it. Never having read any of her other books I wasn't sure what to expect but found Solve by Christmas to be an entertaining and delightful book. Jasper, a budding private eye, has been given an almost impossible task by his Uncle Rudi, owner of a sugar company. While working on this daunting project, major problems develop at the factory and Jasper has another case on his hands. Can he solve the mystery before it's too late? What is the key to it all? The author has crafted some quirky and interesting characters that make the story enjoyable. The suspense continues to build to the final pages with sabotage and accidents compounding the issues. With one of the themes of the story centering around depression and its effects, the author tackles this rather gritty subject and yet leaves the reader with the hope that one's value and purpose can be found through faith in God. There is a little hint of a romance thrown in the mix which makes one wonder if the author has more in store for the characters found in Solve by Christmas. Here's hoping she does. I received a complimentary copy of the book through CelebrateLit and was not required to write a review. The opinions are my own.
Mar-J More than 1 year ago
Amber Schamel captivated me with her first historical mystery, Solve by Christmas, set in Denver, Colorado. Young Jasper Hollock is trying to solve two cases by Christmas. Someone was sabotaging Rubin’s Sugar Factory that needed to be solved, plus Mr. Rubin had told Jasper he would end his life on Christmas Day if he could not give him a reason to live. The characters are three dimensional with vivid conversations and scenes that kept the action flowing. Jasper had a side kick, Denny, that brought laughter as you read the mysterious happenings. The continues disturbances at the Sugar Factory gave Jasper plenty of opportunities to follow clues as well each incident brought more lives into danger. With time pressing closer to Christmas, Jasper was determined to bring the culprit to confrontation as well as provide purpose for Mr. Rubin not to end his life. There’s a bit of romance in the story that would be wonderful to see in future books with these characters, too. The answer Jasper received not only brought him new life and focus, but also Mr. Rubin and others. Schamel gave readers an answer for their own lives despite the darkness they may be facing. Amber Schamel Christian faith shining through in her books has put her in the top favorite authors of this reader. I look forward to reading more books by Amber Schamel, whether it’s Biblical or Historical Fiction or her new Historical Mystery genre.
ganderson523 More than 1 year ago
Solve by Christmas is a mystery that flows smoothly and is hard to put down. It is a true mystery with the detective following the facts and sniffing out the other clues. Detective Jasper Hollock, former with the police, works for his mentor and family friend, Gustov Rudin, as a detective for his company, Rudin Sugar Factory. Mr. Rubin gives him one mystery to solve: find a reason for him to live and find it before Christmas. Jasper gathers clues from his wife, his charity giving to a local orphanage and other places. He also has a mystery to solve when someone sabotages the sugar factory. Young orphan Denny, a worker with the company, wants to help Jasper as a detective assistant. Jasper is not real excited at first what Denny shows his investigating abilities and wins Jasper's admiration. As they explore the clues, Jasper reminds Denny that the first rule in investigation is "details, people. details." One clue to follow is checking out the local union because they have a beef with Mr. Rudin, who is not part of the union. But someone is out to get Mr. Rudin. Could it be someone on the outside or someone who works in the factory? Jasper relies on his faith and prayers to help solve the mystery. There are some other enjoyable characters in the story. Miss Lesley works in the office of the factory and sparks fly between her and Jasper. We meet Mrs. Rubin and some of the people who live at the orphanage. There is a somewhat unsavory newspaper reporter that Jasper has to fuss at for printing stories that are not fact checked. This is a fun mystery that would be a great start to a new series. Thanks to the author for the story to read in exhange for an honest review.