The perennial carol is a stark contrast to most other Christmas songs, being simple and sombre in tone. It focuses on the birth of Jesus Christ, and features many images we associate with the nativity; the manger, a stable, angels, livestock and the Wise Men.
The meaning of the words lie in their humble simplicity — the stable stood in a bleak midwinter's night is 'enough' for the baby Jesus. This carol doesn't shout from the rooftops about Christmas cheer; instead, it focuses on the simplest yet truest gift of all, love. All on a Christmas Morning. King's College Choir of Cambridge. Christmas at King's College. Gloriae Dei Cantores. Sing Noel.
The Swingle Singers. Various Artists. Joy in the Morning. Winchester Cathedral Choir. Christmas from Winchester. John Rutter: The Colors of Christmas. John's College Choir, Cambridge. On Christmas Night. Vasari Singers. A Winter's Light. Advent Calendar. Christmas Carols. Classical Christmas [Somerset]. Christmas at Glasgow Cathedral. Favourite Carols From King's.
Deck the Halls. Clare finds a baby left on the church steps, with a note that the child's name is Cody and that he should be given for adoption to a wealthy local couple. A little over a week later the murdered body of a young woman is discovered, and it's determined that she gave birth not long before she died.
Local police chief Russ Van Alstyne investigates, helped and hindered by Clare, for whom, although married, he develops the hots. There's another murder, and slowly Russ and Clare begin to put the pieces together. Put the accent on the "slowly. That's what Jesus wanted, all right: people dropping explosives, incendiaries and white phosphorus on kids. Well before the end it becomes pretty obvious who the other killer is, and why the killer killed.
This might irritate any reader seeking a straightforward mystery tale. It's also at about this point, though, that -- luckily for me, at least -- the tale shifted to action, as Clare is stalked by and retaliates against a mysterious figure in the midst of a snow-bound waste. That action is all slightly implausible -- she must have astonishing eyesight at night in a blizzard in a forested terrain -- but it's well enough written that I didn't care. Overall, I felt as if I were being asked to wade through way too much -- not just the religious propaganda but the overwriting and the smugness -- for the sake of the good bits.
View all 4 comments. May 20, Sharon Huether rated it it was amazing Shelves: mystery. A police chief and a woman priest team up to solve several mysteries and murders in a small town during the winter. The characters are real and the plot full of imagination. There are surprises in the outcome. Great book. View all 5 comments. A great start to one of my top two or three favorite series!
Jan 12, Wanda rated it really liked it Shelves: public-library , read-in , female-authors , mysteries-thrillers , christmas. So I was pleasantly surprised by this selection—for a first book of a series, it was great. I was never distracted by the words, I was able to immerse myself in the world of Millers Kill, N.
Secondly, I really connected with her two main characters, Rev. Just like Agatha Christie, Spencer-Fleming has chosen a small town as a setting for her story. It gives Clare and Russ a much better knowledge of the people around them, making the crime-solving aspect much more informed and interesting. Solving murders in a big city involves much more luck, while these mysteries set in small communities allow for much more exploration of the human decisions that pull people into criminal acts.
Alban's Episcopal Church and former Army helicopter pilot. They meet when Clare finds a newborn baby wrapped in blankets outside the church. The person who left the baby also left a note asking that the baby be given to a local couple who have been desperate to adopt a child, Geoffrey and Karen Burns. Since the Burns' are also members of the church Van Alstyne thinks there may be some connection to one of the birth parents.
Clare asks Russ to accompany him on his patrol one night and they discover a young murdered girl who turns out to be the baby's mother. As they continue to investigate, the married agnostic chief and the impulsive priest become attracted to each other. They have a lot in common even though it might not seem like it. They both have a need to pursue justice, one through the law and one through religious convictions. The relationship between Russ and Clare is well done and I'm curious to see how it progresses.
Don't be put off by the fact that one of the protagonists is a priest. Clare is much more than that. The religious aspects of the mystery are not heavy handed at all. The pacing is action packed and the author creates a very vivid Adirondack winter atmosphere. My only complaint about the book is the way Clare is constantly dashing off and putting herself in jeopardy. It reminds me of those movies where the audience knows the serial killer is inside the house and the heroine goes in alone.
It seemed a tad unbelievable to me. I won't that keep me from discovering what happens in the next book of this entertaining series. Wow, this was really good! The mystery kept me guessing, yes, and I really enjoyed seeing Clare doing her priestly duties--I love stories in which religious people are portrayed as not crazy or venal or misguided.
There's a good tension between Russ as the hard-headed, cynical cop and Clare as the more optimistic, generous priest, especially since neither of them is stereotypically so. But what I loved was the developing relationship between Russ and Clare, how I could see where it was going eve Wow, this was really good!
But what I loved was the developing relationship between Russ and Clare, how I could see where it was going even though they couldn't. It's interesting that Russ's wife Linda was only present in her absence, only appeared off-stage. It suggests that Russ and Linda have drifted apart, and that they don't have a lot in common and may never have had but not that their marriage is irredeemable or that this justifies any feelings that might be developing between Clare and Russ. I'm definitely looking forward to the rest of the series.
Aug 09, Lightreads rated it liked it Shelves: fiction , mystery. Hey, I liked this! They solve crime, yeah, whatever. But mostly they have this slow-blooming connection. This book is about them becoming friends in this wonderful, organic, Hey, I liked this! This book is about them becoming friends in this wonderful, organic, completely believable way. Really nice.
I would rate this 3. A female priest and the Chief of Police join forces to solve two murderes and the mystery of a baby left on the church rectory steps. In a small town in Up-State, NY. Clare is characterized as intelligent though at times pushy and at other times going beyond the expected for a non-authorized police snoop.
Spencer-Fleming does hold one's attention and expertly keeps readers guessing until the mystery is finally solved. I look forward to seeing where the physical attraction I would rate this 3. I look forward to seeing where the physical attraction between Chief Russ married and Reverend Clare heads in future books. View all 14 comments. Jun 04, Juliann Blake rated it really liked it. We have a police chief and a female priest in an Adirondacks small community.
Did I mention the police chief is married? The priest is a woman of strong faith and of daring. I will definitely be getting the next book in the series :. View all 3 comments. I have read this book twice now within six months. It only got better upon the second reading. The story wasn't what I thought it was going to be from the blurb because of their relationship statuses in the book.
So it had me worried for a very long time. I think that was the reason for the four stars I gave the book after the first time I read it. I'm going to try to keep this review to the first book alone, though it's hard as I want to comment on what comes later. I apologize if I fail at it, I have read this book twice now within six months.
I apologize if I fail at it, but there won't be any spoilers. I love Julia Spencer-Fleming's writing style. It is descriptive without being over-flowery. There are no lines that stand out as trying too hard, she has a very consistent voice. She sets scenes that draw you into what's happening in an almost effortless way.
It can dip into a bit of the cliche, but it never really dives in. Fleming doesn't write a mystery that drops clues along the way, allowing the reader to play junior detective along with the characters. You get the information as the characters do and it's a snaking vine that keeps you guessing but never allows you to get it right. I'm sure some people will hate that because they love trying to put clues together, but I really liked not being bored with the mystery because it was so easy to tell whodunit.
The story is engrossing, and there are definitely a few edge of your seat moments. One that happens on a snowy mountain that I just love. Though this scene and the climatic ending do veer somewhat into head scratching territory it's easy to forgive because they're so absorbing.
The number one thing Fleming does best is characters. I'm a character driven person. I can forgive a lot of things in a story if I love the characters, and a decent story will be terrible to me if I hate the characters.
Both are very strong characters, intelligent, with great senses of humor. They're both stubborn and that trait definitely gets her into trouble and can set each other off, but they also listen to each other well most of the time. I love that they're not perfect. They don't always make the right choices and the choices they have to make get harder and harder.
The free sheet music edition is below and you can also purchase the TAB if you need it. The poem was published, under the title A Christmas Carol. Read more via Wiki. In the bleak mid-winter Frosty wind made moan; Earth stood hard as iron, Water like a stone; Snow had fallen, snow on snow, Snow on snow, In the bleak mid-winter Long ago.
What can I give Him, Poor as I am? Support the site. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the film of the same name, see In the Bleak Midwinter film. For the mystery novel of the same name, see In the Bleak Midwinter novel. Gustav Holst's setting Cranham , Harold Darke's setting Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. Retrieved 4 October January Scribner's Monthly. BBC News.Mar 04, · Sheila Myers There aren't any of what I would describe as graphic murder scenes. Julia Spencer-Fleming did a great job describing the scenes and giving just enough more There aren't any of what I would describe as graphic murder scenes. Julia Spencer-Fleming did a great job describing the scenes and giving just enough information so that the reader will know how /5(K).