morning-giftI mentioned The Morning Gift was my favorite book a couple of weeks ago when I posted the vanillekipferl recipe. Though this isn’t a Christmas book, it fills me with such happiness that I am sharing it with you now.  I hope you all like it, too.

Eva Ibbotson is this amazing writer who caught my attention with her book A Countess Below Stairs (recommended to me by Julie). Her writing style is varied and complex, which, along with her exceptional knowledge of all things European and wonderful, makes you feel slightly inferior for just a moment before resolving to be smarter and better informed in the future.

Ruth, the main character in The Morning Gift, is an old-fashioned heroine, slightly reminiscent of Anne Shirley—intelligent, quirky, and lovable. She is half Jewish and living in Austria in the midst of Hitler’s power at the start of the second World War. Everyone in her family escapes, but due to terrible complications, Ruth is stranded in Vienna. Her story starts when a young professor and colleague of her father, comes to check on the family to be sure they have all left the city safely. When he finds Ruth there, they discover the only way to get her out of the country is to marry. But dissolving the marriage when they arrive in England is more trouble than they expect.

This is one of those books that is more fun the more you read it. I found myself laughing out loud and calling my mom on the phone every time I got to a good part (She loves it too, by the way).

Some of Ibbotson’s Young Adult novels have some mature themes (nothing too steamy, though), as they were written initially for grown-ups. If you’re wanting a daughter to read this or any of her other Young Adult novels, you may want to preview them first.