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Review of Solve by Christmas by Amber Schamel

Posted by [email protected] on December 16, 2017 at 3:10 PM


About the Book


Name of book: Solve by Christmas

Author: Amber Schamel

Genre: Historical Christmas

Release Date: September 1, 2017

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, and Jasper is left staring at the stark reality of his own soul. Time is ticking. Jasper must solve both cases by Christmas before Mr. Rudin, the company, and Jasper’s faith, are dragged to perdition. Will this be the Christmas Jasper truly discovers what makes life worth living? “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)


My Review

I thoroughly enjoyed Solved by Christmas and was entertained by the mystery and the quirkiness of the main character, Jasper Hollock. He came across as very real, with his ability to pick up clues in spite of his clumsiness. Jasper, a private investigator, was assigned two different cases at Rudin Sugar Factory. He is assisted by a humorous delivery boy, Denny who wants to be Jasper's assistant.


Jasper's focus turns to Mr. Rudin, who is like an uncle to him and is determined to end his life on Christmas unless Jasper can convince him that his life is worth living.


There is lots of suspense and an interesting setting. The characters are well developed and I loved the wittiness of Denny. I found myself laughing at his antics. The story kept me guessing until the end.


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.

Pick up your copy here.

Guest Post from Amber Schamel

Thank you so much for joining us on the Celebrate Lit blog tour for Solve by Christmas!! I am so excited you’re here. For this special event, I wanted to share the inside scoop behind the story.

Solve by Christmas is a historical Mystery set in Denver during the great blizzard of 1913. It has a unique storyline, so people often wonder where the idea came from. Honestly, it was one of those ideas that just popped into my head, then took on a life of its own and evolved over several weeks.

I wanted to give my readers a new story before the year was out, but I didn’t have a specific plot in mind. I did know I wanted to write a Christmas story. So, I had that much. Then I decided I wanted something with a firm deadline.” If this doesn’t happen by this date, everyone dies” sort of thing. Then “By Christmas” popped into my head and flicked on a light. What if Christmas was the deadline?

I’ve always loved detectives and mystery stories, and they go perfectly with deadlines. So, then I thought, what if a detective must solve the case by Christmas or death wins?

Sometimes, as an author, there are ideas and thoughts that seem to come out of nowhere. Almost like God dropping a card into your mental mailbox. The next point of Solve by Christmas was that way. What if a detective was assigned a case that he had to solve by Christmas, but it wasn’t a real case –at least not the type of case he wanted—but something completely different? From there, the story began to really take shape.


The next step, of course, is to come up with a character to be the detective. I wanted the story to have a Sherlock Holmes feel, so I started by studying his character a bit. But my story also has a less serious side since it isn’t a murder mystery and takes place at a sugar factory. I wondered…what would happen if you took Sherlock Holmes and meshed him with Barney Fife?


Now THAT would be hard to pull off. But I was determined to try. So, I made a list of Sherlock Holmes traits, and one of Barney Fife’s traits. I began to see that they actually DO have several similarities. They’re both a bit socially awkward. They both have a very similar flavor of pride. And they both have this air of authority…although Sherlock can back his up while Barney struggles in that area. Then I began to pick and choose between the traits that were left, this Barney trait, this Sherlock trait, and pretty soon I had Detective Jasper Hollock forming on the page. Whether you will get a Barney Fife and Sherlock feel when you read Solve by Christmas, I can’t say. But I do believe I was successful in creating a unique, quirky character that will bring this Christmas mystery to life.


There you have it. The scoop behind Solve by Christmas. I hope you enjoy the story, and best wishes in the giveaway! I will be stopping by along with Jasper and Denny (the two main characters) to answer any questions you may have about the story or the characters, so please do leave us a comment.


Blog Stops


A Baker’s Perspective, December 12

 

A Simply Enchanted Life, December 12


Connie’s History Classroom, December 13

 

Bigreadersite, December 13

 

The Fizzy Pop Collecton, December 14

 

Genesis5020, December 14


Baker Kella, December 15

 

Daysong Reflections, December 15

 

History, Mystery & Faith, December 16


Karen Sue Hadley, December 16

 

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 17

 

Christian Author, J.E.Grace, December 17

 

Aryn The Libraryan, December 18

 

A Reader’s Brain, December 18

 

Bibliophile Reviews, December 19


Mary Hake, December 19

 

Texas Book-aholic, December 20

 

Simple Harvest Reads, December 20

 

Babs Book Bistro, December 21

 

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 21 (Interview)

 

Seasons of Opportunities, December 22

 

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 22

 

Just the Write Escape, December 23

 

The Power of Words, December 23

 

Live.Love.Read., December 24

 

Carpe Diem, December 24

 

Blogging With Carol, December 25

 

The Important Things in Life: God, Books, & Chocolate, December 25


Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Amber is giving away a grand prize of a Christmas themed basket which will include a paperback copy of Solve by Christmas and The Swaddling Clothes (my two Christmas books) as well as a Christmas terrarium jar, and a Solve by Christmas notepad!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c5bb

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1 Comment

Reply Amber Schamel
9:42 AM on December 18, 2017 
Thanks so much for sharing your review and being a part of the fun with Celebrate Lit! I am so glad you enjoyed Solve by Christmas.