WALKING ON AIR
Like Francine Rivers, one of Anderson’s hallmarks is creating opportunity for lost souls to find redemption. She takes that theme to new heights, blending the faith of an inspirational romance with realistic western characters and a tender love story. All the pieces are perfectly aligned to make readers laugh and cry. This feel-good story, complete with children, a dog, Thanksgiving and Christmas, will bring joy and a feeling of completion.
Gabriel Valance is a gunslinger who drinks, gambles and womanizes until he is gunned down in Random, Colo. on Christmas Eve. The angels at the Pearly Gates give him an opportunity to set his record straight. He is to choose one of three people to help. He picks Nan Hoffman, a dressmaker haunted by her past. He has one month to win her trust so she can learn to love and lead a full life. There is one catch: He cannot alter anyone else’s destiny. Gabe falls in love and realizes he has to help others, even if it means he’ll never see heaven. (SIGNET, Feb., 400 pp., $7.99)