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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Mauve enjoys her volunteer work at the historic Fort Gifford, a Revolutionary War fort. She might be one of the younger volunteers, but it’s something she enjoys and it gets her out of the house and away from a mother who likes making her life difficult. Then, of course, there’s Hiram, a well-to-do, handsome childhood friend from way back. Everyone assumed Mauve and Hiram were made for each other, and would eventually become a romantic ‘item’. They tried, but it didn’t work. Or, at least, Mauve didn’t believe it was working. And, then a new volunteer joins the Fort Gifford group, a thoroughly qualified history buff. As the Christmas festivities magnify around the fort, there is concern that it might be closed for good, demolished and replaced by a new state-of-the-art hospital. Mauve finds the courage to speak out and garner community support to save the fort and, in the process, captures the attention of the new volunteer. Not receiving support for her volunteer work from her so-called boyfriend, Mauve makes the bold move to break up with Hiram.
Jordan Elizabeth’s novella, Christmas at Fort Gifford, is a romance in two parts, each part told in the first person: one from Mauve’s point of view and the other from Hiram’s. Each plot is reasonably developed and reaches its climax, though Mauve’s is cut short with the transition to Hiram’s point of view. The characters are well developed and the historical aspect of the revolutionary fort and the volunteer work adds an interesting flavor. This is definitely a romance, but it’s also a coming-of-age story for Mauve as she gradually matures and realizes some of her strengths and weaknesses and, of course, her interest in both history and the community. Generally, Christmas at Fort Gifford by Jordan Elizabeth is a good and interesting read.