On a June day, a young woman in a summer dress steps off a Chicago-bound bus into a small midwestern town. She doesn't intend to stay. She is just passing through. Yet her stopping here has a reason and it is part of a story that you will never forget.
The time is the 1950s, when life was simpler, people still believed in dreams, and family was, very nearly, everything. The place is a small midwestern town with a high school and a downtown, a skating pond and a movie house. And on a tree-lined street in the heartland of America, an extraordinary set of events begins to unfold. And gradually what seems serendipitous is tinged with purpose. A happy home is shattered by a child's senseless death. A loving marriage starts to unravel. And a stranger arrives - a young woman who will touch many lives before she moves on. She and a young man will meet and fall in love. Their love, so innocent and full of hope, helps to restore a family's dreams. And all of their lives will be changed forever by the precious gift she leaves them.
The Gift, Danielle Steel's thirty-third best-selling work, is a magical story told with stunning simplicity and power. It reveals a relationship so moving it will take your breath away. And it tells a haunting and beautiful truth about the unpredictability - and the wonder - of life.
About The Author
Danielle Steel is one of the world's most
popular authors, with over 560 million copies of her novels sold. Her
many international bestsellers include Bungalow 2, Sisters, H.R.H.,
Coming Out, The House, Toxic Bachelors, and other highly acclaimed
novels. She is also the author of His Bright Light, the story
of her son Nick Traina's life and death.
'A sugared concentrate of Steel's soothing-syrup craft (Accident, p. 16, etc.), in which a family tragedy, the plight of a unwed teen mother-to-be, and the drift of a grieving teenage boy conclude in a happy ending that, like a technicolor sunset, can be sighted from some distance. The Whittaker family - John ('a warm, caring man'), teacher Liz, 15-year-old Tom (sterling athlete and student), and 5-year-old Annie (quite adorable) - are in the midst of a cozy Illinois Christmas (hot chocolate, skating, the works) when suddenly little Annie is dead of meningitis.
By the following summer (1952) the family has shattered. Switch to Iowa and pretty, gifted Maribeth, oppressed by a hidebound father who forces her to go to the high school prom in a navy blue dress with long sleeves. But rotten BMOC Paul, undeterred by navy blue, seduces the innocent Maribeth. Sure enough, Paul returns to his regular girl, and Maribeth is preggers. Dad roars her off to a convent for unwed mothers, but she leaves and de-buses at a friendly-looking town where she's hired as a waitress. Guess who's eating at the diner? It's Tom. Love simmers, eventually Maribeth tells Tom everything, and he tells his parents. Will Maribeth find a home for her baby? Will she realize her dream of college? Will the Whittakers bond again? Just you guess. And the 'gift'? Maribeth says of Annie, 'some people just come through our lives to bring us...a gift, a blessing.' Later, as Tom and Maribeth stand before Annie's grave (not one possible tear is left unjerked), they know a peace 'strong and clean and honest' and whether or not they will marry some day. They have 'hope and promise and dreams.' With a pretty dust jacket and handsome gold lettering, an eye-catching, toasty, heartwarming gift item that should fairly pop off the shelves. Kirkus Reviews