BOOK REVIEW: The Wishing Bridge by Viola Shipman


Title: The Wishing Bridge
Author: Viola Shipman
Publication: November 7, 2023
Publisher: Graydon House
Genre: Holiday Fiction
Pages: 364


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SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

Once the hottest mergers and acquisitions executive in the company, Henrietta Wegner can see the ambitious and impossibly young up-and-comers gunning for her job. When Henri’s boss makes it clear she’ll be starting the New Year unemployed unless she can close a big deal before the holidays, Henri impulsively tells him that she can convince her aging parents to sell Wegner’s—their iconic Frankenmuth, Michigan, Christmas store—to a massive, soulless corporation. It’s the kind of deal cool, corporate Henri has built her career on.

Home for the holidays has typically meant a perfunctory twenty-four-hour visit for Henri, then back to Detroit as fast as her car will drive her. So turning up at the Wegner’s offices in early December raises some eyebrows: from her delighted, if puzzled, parents to her suspicious brother and curious childhood friends. But as Henri fields impatient texts from her boss while reconnecting with the magic of the store and warmth of her hometown, what sounded great in the boardroom begins to lose its luster in real life. She’s running out of time to pull the trigger on what could be the greatest success of her career…or the most awkward family holiday of her life.


**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**

Christmas books are some of my favorite types to read during the holidays because they just make you feel good. I sometimes say they remind me of Hallmark movies, which is a complete compliment. When I saw Viola Shipman’s book The Wishing Bridge, I knew I had to read it. Not only because it was a Christmas story, but because it was based in Michigan, where I was raised.

The story takes place in Frankenmuth, a beautiful town in Michigan that is huge at Christmastime. It’s architecture and shops bring droves of people in, just like it says in the story. Henri is the daughter of the owners of the biggest Christmas store and she ran away from that life after college. I loved the story because it gave a bit of suspense as we waited to see what she was going to do. It really raised the feelings from a simple happy Christmas story to a really emotional book. I felt her anxiety and all the moments that she felt torn on what to do.

I felt her best friend Sofie was a fun addition to the story. She really gave a voice of reason to Henri and her quick wit and sarcasm were refreshing in all the seriousness. I also really liked her family and those working at the Christmas store. I would love to go to this store with these people. All of this really built the vision for this book and helped the story along.

A perfectly told Christmas story with all the magic and miracles you want from a story like this. I loved it and I cannot wait to read more from Shipman.

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