Hot Best Seller

The Secret of Snow

Availability: Ready to download

As comforting and familiar as a favorite sweater, Viola Shipman's first holiday novel is a promise of heartfelt family traditions, humorously real experience, and the enduring power of love and friendship. Sonny Dunes, a SoCal meteorologist who knows only sunshine and seventy-two-degree days, is being replaced by an AI meteorologist, which the youthful station manager rea As comforting and familiar as a favorite sweater, Viola Shipman's first holiday novel is a promise of heartfelt family traditions, humorously real experience, and the enduring power of love and friendship. Sonny Dunes, a SoCal meteorologist who knows only sunshine and seventy-two-degree days, is being replaced by an AI meteorologist, which the youthful station manager reasons "will never age, gain weight or renegotiate its contract." The only station willing to give the fifty-year-old another shot is one in a famously nontropical place—her northern Michigan hometown. Unearthing her carefully laid California roots, Sonny returns home and reacclimates to the painfully long, dark winters dominated by a Michigan phenomenon known as lake-effect snow. But beyond the complete physical shock to her system, she's also forced to confront her past: her new boss, a former journalism classmate and mortal frenemy; more keenly, the death of a younger sister who loved the snow; and the mother who caused Sonny to leave. To distract herself from the unwelcome memories, Sonny decides to throw herself headfirst into all things winter to woo viewers and reclaim her success. From sledding and ice fishing to skiing and winter festivals, the merrymaking culminates with the town’s famed Winter Ice Sculpture Contest. Running the events is a widowed father and chamber of commerce director, whose genuine love of Michigan, winter and Sonny just might thaw her heart and restart her life in a way she never could have predicted.


Compare

As comforting and familiar as a favorite sweater, Viola Shipman's first holiday novel is a promise of heartfelt family traditions, humorously real experience, and the enduring power of love and friendship. Sonny Dunes, a SoCal meteorologist who knows only sunshine and seventy-two-degree days, is being replaced by an AI meteorologist, which the youthful station manager rea As comforting and familiar as a favorite sweater, Viola Shipman's first holiday novel is a promise of heartfelt family traditions, humorously real experience, and the enduring power of love and friendship. Sonny Dunes, a SoCal meteorologist who knows only sunshine and seventy-two-degree days, is being replaced by an AI meteorologist, which the youthful station manager reasons "will never age, gain weight or renegotiate its contract." The only station willing to give the fifty-year-old another shot is one in a famously nontropical place—her northern Michigan hometown. Unearthing her carefully laid California roots, Sonny returns home and reacclimates to the painfully long, dark winters dominated by a Michigan phenomenon known as lake-effect snow. But beyond the complete physical shock to her system, she's also forced to confront her past: her new boss, a former journalism classmate and mortal frenemy; more keenly, the death of a younger sister who loved the snow; and the mother who caused Sonny to leave. To distract herself from the unwelcome memories, Sonny decides to throw herself headfirst into all things winter to woo viewers and reclaim her success. From sledding and ice fishing to skiing and winter festivals, the merrymaking culminates with the town’s famed Winter Ice Sculpture Contest. Running the events is a widowed father and chamber of commerce director, whose genuine love of Michigan, winter and Sonny just might thaw her heart and restart her life in a way she never could have predicted.

30 review for The Secret of Snow

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader

    A fun, cozy, and heartwarming holiday book! The Secret of Snow is the first holiday novel from Shipman, and as with the others, it is a total comfort read about friendship and love. Sonny returns home to Michigan and its lake-effect snow (that snow is no joke!). She also has to face her past, and she decides to make the best of winter and her new life by ice fishing, sledding, and all the other things Michiganders do to enjoy the harsh winter. As someone who covets the bits of measly snow we get A fun, cozy, and heartwarming holiday book! The Secret of Snow is the first holiday novel from Shipman, and as with the others, it is a total comfort read about friendship and love. Sonny returns home to Michigan and its lake-effect snow (that snow is no joke!). She also has to face her past, and she decides to make the best of winter and her new life by ice fishing, sledding, and all the other things Michiganders do to enjoy the harsh winter. As someone who covets the bits of measly snow we get here, I was entranced with the inviting coziness of the Michigan winter setting. I also loved Sonny and her opportunity for a second chance. Always a hopeful trope! I received a gifted copy. Many of my reviews can also be found on my blog: www.jennifertarheelreader.com and instagram: www.instagram.com/tarheelreader

  2. 5 out of 5

    WhiskeyintheJar

    1.5 stars I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. When long-time meteorologist Sonny gets replaced with AI, she has a breakdown on camera that has her pasting suns on her chest and shaking them at the camera. With her career in serious trouble, she gets a call from her agent saying that a station in Michigan is offering her a job. It's Sonny's home state and she's done everything she can to run away f 1.5 stars I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. When long-time meteorologist Sonny gets replaced with AI, she has a breakdown on camera that has her pasting suns on her chest and shaking them at the camera. With her career in serious trouble, she gets a call from her agent saying that a station in Michigan is offering her a job. It's Sonny's home state and she's done everything she can to run away from her memories there. With nowhere else to go, Sonny takes the job and is forced to confront why she keeps running and if she even wants to anymore. Now, everything is sunny, isn't it, Sonny? The Secret of Snow was a mixture of lit fic, women's fiction, and a thimble of romance. The focus is on Sonny's life and how hard the death of her younger sister impacted her and how that causes her to run from relationships in her life. At fifty years old, with a successful career, it was nice to see someone who outwardly has it all together, still have emotional struggles but eventually overcome them. When Sonny moves back home, she lives with her mother and we learn that her father died from cancer years ago, leaving both of them with only each other. It's not immediately revealed to the reader what happened to Sonny's younger sister but through small, quick flashbacks, it's obvious that the younger sister died in a tragic accident when she was a child and Sonny still hasn't dealt with the emotional fallout. All because it's easier to be alone than it is to lose someone you love. Again. The writing had some emotional moments but the way the characters spoke the lines felt unnatural and overly contrived to deliver pithy philosophical ideals. Instead of feeling like the characters were living or delivering the story, I could clearly see the author behind it driving everything to make their points. The second half felt very drawn out as Sonny circles around and around the same issues. I enjoyed the relationship with her mother, wish there had been more delving between the intricacies between Sonny and her boss/friend Lisa, and the romance first had the guy Mason focused too much on his wife who had passed (I don't care how open you are, when you first meet someone, you don't just unload that your wife committed suicide) and didn't spend enough time with Sonny to make me believe in their love. Mason giving Sonny his wife's necklace also felt odd and didn't land with me the way it was supposed to. My favorite relationship ended up being between Sonny and her cameraman she ends up becoming a mentor to, their relationship felt the most natural. The book has a gorgeous cover, the winter activities Sonny does gives it a good seasonal feel, and after you read the story, the title nicely hits but the points and lines the author obviously wanted to deliver made the story and characters feel contrived and gave this an awkward forced flow.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Linden

    Sonny Dunes, who is around 50, is a popular on-air meteorologist in Palm Springs, until she is fired. Angry that the young guy who canned her has chosen an AI figure to do the weather, she gets drunk and causes an on-air scene which goes viral. It looks as if her career is done for until she gets a call from a small station in her Michigan hometown offering her a job. It's hard to be living with her mom, getting used to wintry weather, and revisiting the scene of the fatal accident that killed h Sonny Dunes, who is around 50, is a popular on-air meteorologist in Palm Springs, until she is fired. Angry that the young guy who canned her has chosen an AI figure to do the weather, she gets drunk and causes an on-air scene which goes viral. It looks as if her career is done for until she gets a call from a small station in her Michigan hometown offering her a job. It's hard to be living with her mom, getting used to wintry weather, and revisiting the scene of the fatal accident that killed her young sister. But Michigan, she learns, has more to offer that just snow, including a happily ever after ending for the former Amberrose Murphy. Recommended for fans of Debbie Macomber. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sherri Thacker

    Once again, Viola Shipman writes a fantastic book about a meteorologist named Sonny who had moved from sunny California to very cold, snowy Michigan. (Where she was originally from) She was fired and replaced with a “robot” so she moved back to Michigan to live with her mom. (And she’s 50 years old) She gets another meteorologist job and runs into many old friends and has to adjust to the cold winters there again. It’s all about second chances and as usual, Viola Shipman delivers! I just love hi Once again, Viola Shipman writes a fantastic book about a meteorologist named Sonny who had moved from sunny California to very cold, snowy Michigan. (Where she was originally from) She was fired and replaced with a “robot” so she moved back to Michigan to live with her mom. (And she’s 50 years old) She gets another meteorologist job and runs into many old friends and has to adjust to the cold winters there again. It’s all about second chances and as usual, Viola Shipman delivers! I just love his story telling! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this early release in exchange for my honest review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    "Winter can change a person. It can show you the delicate structure of the world when everything is stripped clean. It can illuminate your soul when the world is cloaked in darkness. It can warm your heart when everything else is frozen. It can let you hear your own thoughts for the first time when the earth finally falls silent. But mostly winter can let you see the silhouette of your body's branches - like a tree in February - when all the leaves are off, the green is gone, the adornme "Winter can change a person. It can show you the delicate structure of the world when everything is stripped clean. It can illuminate your soul when the world is cloaked in darkness. It can warm your heart when everything else is frozen. It can let you hear your own thoughts for the first time when the earth finally falls silent. But mostly winter can let you see the silhouette of your body's branches - like a tree in February - when all the leaves are off, the green is gone, the adornment stripped away and, for the first time, you can appreciate all the knots, bends, broken limbs and lightning strikes. You can see the beauty that has been created in harsh times. But to see all of this you first must be willing to stand in the cold." This was my first book from Viola Shipman and it impacted me deeply. Grief and loss, running from memories, and finding new paths home. I will absolutely read more from this author. "No matter what life throws at you, never forget you are loved, that your life matters, and that your impact on others can never be measured but can always be felt when it's removed."

  6. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

    From wonderfully warm-all-the-time Southern California back to frigid, snowy Michigan. How can it be that at 50 Sonny is fired from the meteorologist job she has had forever, replaced by a robot, and has to return home? What will be in store for her there? Well for starters, she has to move in with her mother and live in her old bedroom with all her high school and childhood memories, and of course waking up to snow. THE SECRET OF SNOW is a fun read. As I was reading, I was thinking what it would be From wonderfully warm-all-the-time Southern California back to frigid, snowy Michigan. How can it be that at 50 Sonny is fired from the meteorologist job she has had forever, replaced by a robot, and has to return home? What will be in store for her there? Well for starters, she has to move in with her mother and live in her old bedroom with all her high school and childhood memories, and of course waking up to snow. THE SECRET OF SNOW is a fun read. As I was reading, I was thinking what it would be like to have to live with your parents again and in the town you grew up in after making it big elsewhere. Viola Shipman always knows how to cheer you up and keep you on the side of positive. Another enjoyable book fans won’t want to miss. You never know what home has waiting for you even though there might be good with the bad. 5/5 This book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    When I was growing up, summer always meant several trips from Detroit to Lake Michigan. I still go there every time I get a chance even though I live in NC. I've traveled all over the world and still believe that the eastern shore of Lake Michigan is one of the most beautiful places on earth. All of Viola Shipman's books are set in Michigan and show his love of the state. His new book is an homage to Michigan and Lake Michigan along with being a terrific story. Sonny Dunes is a meteorologist in b When I was growing up, summer always meant several trips from Detroit to Lake Michigan. I still go there every time I get a chance even though I live in NC. I've traveled all over the world and still believe that the eastern shore of Lake Michigan is one of the most beautiful places on earth. All of Viola Shipman's books are set in Michigan and show his love of the state. His new book is an homage to Michigan and Lake Michigan along with being a terrific story. Sonny Dunes is a meteorologist in beautiful and warm Palm Springs, California. She has left winter and cold weather behind in Michigan where she grew up. Not only does she get fired from her job at the TV station but she's replaced by a robot! She makes things even worse with a drunken on air tirade over her treatment by the young station manager. Of course, her tirade goes viral on social media. The only place willing to give her another chance is in Traverse City Michigan - her hometown. As she leaves sunny California to return to cold and dark Michigan, she isn't sure if she'll be able to recover her career. Things get even worse when she finds out that the station manager is an old frenemy from her college years. Sonny has a lot of bad memories in her home state - only the death of her sister who loved snow and a mother that she doesn't get along with. At her job, she faces a young weather girl who wants to be the chief meteorologist while she has to work really hard to make people forget her on air breakdown. To gain viewers, she starts her new job doing reports from various events in Traverse City - sledding, ice fishing and the ice sculpture contest. Along with the events, she meets the Chamber of Commerce director who wants to thaw her heart and help her learn to love snow again. I have read and loved all of Viola Shipman's books but this one is my new favorite. The main character is a mature woman of 50, all of the characters are very believable and remind me of people that I've known in my life and of course, the beautiful setting in snowy, cold Michigan in a town that I love. This is the perfect book to read wrapped up in a warm blanket with a cup of tea! I plan to read it again in the winter. Thanks to the publisher for a copy of this book to read and review.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Heather~ Nature.books.and.coffee

    When Sonny Dunes, a California meteorologist, is let go from her long time job, replaced by a robot, she moves back to her hometown in Michigan. She moves in with her mother, and back into her old bedroom, surrounded by memories of her past. With her new job, and wanting to distract herself from.unwanted memories, she throws herself into all the fun winter activities that michigan has to offer. The Chamber of commerce director is a widowed father, and is running the events. Can this man help Son When Sonny Dunes, a California meteorologist, is let go from her long time job, replaced by a robot, she moves back to her hometown in Michigan. She moves in with her mother, and back into her old bedroom, surrounded by memories of her past. With her new job, and wanting to distract herself from.unwanted memories, she throws herself into all the fun winter activities that michigan has to offer. The Chamber of commerce director is a widowed father, and is running the events. Can this man help Sonny find her warmth and happiness again?! I really enjoyed this one. This is definitely a fun, well written, heartwarming read to pick up this holiday season! Thank you to the publisher and tandem literary for the gifted copy. All opinions are my own!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Leone-campbell

    One cannot lose when reading a Viola Shipman book. First, be prepared for a few tears, some smiles, plenty of comfort and always, always a feel-good life lesson you did not think you needed, with an ending which gives you peace, satisfaction, sadness at ending the book and excitement as to when the next will be coming. The Secret of Snow is no exception. We are first introduced to Sonny Dunes, a 50 year old meteorologist who lives in California as she is having a meltdown live on air after being One cannot lose when reading a Viola Shipman book. First, be prepared for a few tears, some smiles, plenty of comfort and always, always a feel-good life lesson you did not think you needed, with an ending which gives you peace, satisfaction, sadness at ending the book and excitement as to when the next will be coming. The Secret of Snow is no exception. We are first introduced to Sonny Dunes, a 50 year old meteorologist who lives in California as she is having a meltdown live on air after being let go from her job and being replaced by a perky robot meteorologist. Sonny knows the score. At her age, she knows her days are numbered as an on air personality. Now jobless, she gets a call to become the chief meteorologist at one of her hometown television outlets. They are hoping to boost their ratings by hiring her banking on her new notoriety as a crazy weather broadcaster. Her hometown being in Michigan, which is the total opposite of the warm and fairly quiet weather in California. She cannot stand the thought of going back to the raw cold, the ice and especially the snow…so much snow! Besides, not only would she have to live with her mother, she would also have to see friends she sort of dumped and then ignored from years past. But most of all, her return would bring up the memories of the death of her sister years ago when they were young. A sister who loved the snow more then anything else. But back to Michigan she goes, unprepared for both the weather and the memories that will be evoked. There she must face a new boss, an acquaintance from college who Sunny never really gave the time of day, a young journalist who is jealous of Sonny and seems to have her envious eyes set on Sunny’s new job and her mother who only wants to help Sunny put her life back on track. A life she has been running away from for years. The plan…make the watchers fall in love with Sunny by sending her fun, cold and snowy assignments, get them to empathize with her…the local girl who made it big and came back! But, unfortunately that is not what happens. As she tries to adjust to the new job, living with her mother, the weather, and a handsome widower who himself has felt great loss, someone is trying make her look horrible through videos they are sending out. Her initial instinct, as always, is to flee. How on earth can she stay here knowing wherever she looks, she sees her late sister and the sadness and guilt she always feels. When will she ever be able to forgive herself and move on to a life she is sure her sister would want her to have. Perhaps with the help of her newly made friends, some whom she had rejected years ago and her mother, her only living relative will she be able to face her distress from all those years ago and finally bury her past for good in the snow her sister loved so much. Thank you #NetGalley #GraydonHouse #ViolaShipman #TheSecretofSnow for the advanced copy.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kim Novak

    I’m not crying. I’m not crying. I’m not crying. Ok, I’m crying. My first Viola Shipman read will not be my last. Full of humor, grief, and redemption Sonny Dunes is a heroine one can’t help but love like a sister or old friend. As a weather nerd, the opportunity to live vicariously through Sonny was perfection!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Robin Klein

    In a blizzard of holiday books, this treasure by Viola Shipman stands out like a sparkling snowflake. When the book opens, we meet Sonny Dunes, a middle-aged meteorologist on a television station who is living in sunny California and on the surface, she has a perfect life. One day, her world is rocked by a management decision and her over-the-top, inappropriate reaction sends her packing to the open arms of her mother who is still living in her childhood home in the upper peninsula of Michigan. In a blizzard of holiday books, this treasure by Viola Shipman stands out like a sparkling snowflake. When the book opens, we meet Sonny Dunes, a middle-aged meteorologist on a television station who is living in sunny California and on the surface, she has a perfect life. One day, her world is rocked by a management decision and her over-the-top, inappropriate reaction sends her packing to the open arms of her mother who is still living in her childhood home in the upper peninsula of Michigan. But secrets of her past haunt her present, and Sonny has some important life lessons to learn before she can truly move forward both personally and professionally. The book offers the reader hope despite adversity, love in the face of loss, and encouragement in the beauty of second chances. This book is truly Viola’s gift to us all.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Sonny Dunes has been running from her past for far too long. She's a meteorologist in Palm Springs, the happy face of everything weather. But when she is replaced by an android and has an on-air meltdown, her only career option is at a flailing station in her hometown in Michigan. Forced to confront her past, and the people she left behind, Sunny slowly begins to recall the beauty of winter and the memories she had so long tried to bury. Some advice Sunny receives "You sit, in the freezing cold Sonny Dunes has been running from her past for far too long. She's a meteorologist in Palm Springs, the happy face of everything weather. But when she is replaced by an android and has an on-air meltdown, her only career option is at a flailing station in her hometown in Michigan. Forced to confront her past, and the people she left behind, Sunny slowly begins to recall the beauty of winter and the memories she had so long tried to bury. Some advice Sunny receives "You sit, in the freezing cold atop a frozen lake, dangling bait into a hole in the ice. The endgame is to catch something you can't see. Crazy, right? But we all try to control life. Bend it to suit us. Try to reimagine the past, or alter the future. We're rarely in the moment." makes her reevaluate her outlook on life. A wonderful, heartfelt story of redemption, love, family and second chances.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sophia

    Hitting rock bottom is the easy and sometimes non-voluntary part, its deciding to climb back up that can be the doozy. Poor Sonny has already lost a kid sister, a loving dad, and now, through no fault of her own, a job she did well. The road back home is not easy, but it is spectacular in Sonny’s individual style. Though this was my first Viola Shipman novel, it most certainly won’t be my last. My full review will post at Caffeinated Reviewer on Dec 15th.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Denise Wilbanks | This Is My Everybody

    BOOK REVIEW: The Secret Of Snow by Viola Shipman Packed with storylines and themes to satisfy readers looking for a mature strong female character who finds herself struggling to get back on her feet after getting "outsourced" from her job... Sometimes our greatest disappointments turn into our greatest gifts... ✨😎✨ Pages: 400 Genre: Contemporary Fiction Sub-Genre: Starting Over Theme | Second Chance Theme | Finding Love Later In Life Time Period: Contemporary Location: Michigan IF YOU LIKE THIS BOO BOOK REVIEW: The Secret Of Snow by Viola Shipman Packed with storylines and themes to satisfy readers looking for a mature strong female character who finds herself struggling to get back on her feet after getting "outsourced" from her job... Sometimes our greatest disappointments turn into our greatest gifts... ✨😎✨ Pages: 400 Genre: Contemporary Fiction Sub-Genre: Starting Over Theme | Second Chance Theme | Finding Love Later In Life Time Period: Contemporary Location: Michigan IF YOU LIKE THIS BOOK THEN TRY… Book: Float Plan by Trish Doller Movie: Hoosiers -------------------- All my reviews can be seen at This Is My Everybody | Books, Lifestyle & Home Ideas for Simple Living | Denise Wilbanks at www.thisismyeverybody.com ♡ Thank you to NetGalley for this ARC. I voluntarily chose to review it and the opinions contained within are my own.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jamie Degler

    This is easily my favorite book of the year.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Leone-campbell

    One cannot lose when reading a Viola Shipman book. First, be prepared for a few tears, some smiles, plenty of comfort and always, always a feel-good life lesson you did not think you needed, with an ending which gives you peace, satisfaction, sadness at ending the book and excitement as to when the next will be coming. The Secret of Snow is no exception. We are first introduced to Sonny Dunes, a 50 year old meteorologist who lives in California as she is having a meltdown live on air after being One cannot lose when reading a Viola Shipman book. First, be prepared for a few tears, some smiles, plenty of comfort and always, always a feel-good life lesson you did not think you needed, with an ending which gives you peace, satisfaction, sadness at ending the book and excitement as to when the next will be coming. The Secret of Snow is no exception. We are first introduced to Sonny Dunes, a 50 year old meteorologist who lives in California as she is having a meltdown live on air after being let go from her job and being replaced by a perky robot meteorologist. Sonny knows the score. At her age, she knows her days are numbered as an on air personality. Now jobless, she gets a call to become the chief meteorologist at one of her hometown television outlets. They are hoping to boost their ratings by hiring her banking on her new notoriety as a crazy weather broadcaster. Her hometown being in Michigan, which is the total opposite of the warm and fairly quiet weather in California. She cannot stand the thought of going back to the raw cold, the ice and especially the snow…so much snow! Besides, not only would she have to live with her mother, she would also have to see friends she sort of dumped and then ignored from years past. But most of all, her return would bring up the memories of the death of her sister years ago when they were young. A sister who loved the snow more then anything else. But back to Michigan she goes, unprepared for both the weather and the memories that will be evoked. There she must face a new boss, an acquaintance from college who Sunny never really gave the time of day, a young journalist who is jealous of Sonny and seems to have her envious eyes set on Sunny’s new job and her mother who only wants to help Sunny put her life back on track. A life she has been running away from for years. The plan…make the watchers fall in love with Sunny by sending her fun, cold and snowy assignments, get them to empathize with her…the local girl who made it big and came back! But, unfortunately that is not what happens. As she tries to adjust to the new job, living with her mother, the weather, and a handsome widower who himself has felt great loss, someone is trying make her look horrible through videos they are sending out. Her initial instinct, as always, is to flee. How on earth can she stay here knowing wherever she looks, she sees her late sister and the sadness and guilt she always feels. When will she ever be able to forgive herself and move on to a life she is sure her sister would want her to have. Perhaps with the help of her newly made friends, some whom she had rejected years ago and her mother, her only living relative will she be able to face her distress from all those years ago and finally bury her past for good in the snow her sister loved so much. Thank you #NetGalley #GraydonHouse #ViolaShipman #TheSecretofSnow for the advanced copy.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

    Viola Shipman (AKA Wade Rouse) is the real deal! His 1st Christmas novel tells the story of Michigan native turned SoCal gal, Sonny Dunes-a meteorologist golden girl living an golden sunny life. Clouds roll in and gloom takes over when the 50ish Sunny is replaced by a robotic meteorologist. Sonny has an epic meltdown and ends up returning to Michigan, to her roots, to her mother's home to heal. Part of that healing process will be learning how to forgive herself and live again, really live! We h Viola Shipman (AKA Wade Rouse) is the real deal! His 1st Christmas novel tells the story of Michigan native turned SoCal gal, Sonny Dunes-a meteorologist golden girl living an golden sunny life. Clouds roll in and gloom takes over when the 50ish Sunny is replaced by a robotic meteorologist. Sonny has an epic meltdown and ends up returning to Michigan, to her roots, to her mother's home to heal. Part of that healing process will be learning how to forgive herself and live again, really live! We honor the lives of those who have passed by living, by giving. Can she make amends to those she has hurt in her past? Can Sonny forgive herself? Can she honor her sister's life (& death) by giving, by living her own best life? And can she once again find happiness along the beautiful shores of lake Michigan? This heart warming story willl melt your heart faster than frosty melted in the greenhouse! This book had me laughing and cheering! I yelled ( I really disliked Polly Sue!) and cried. , I smiled and cheered some more and then I cried again, happy tears this time. And then I read the personal letter to readers at the end at the end of the book and, I cried again. Viola/Wade, you are the real deal and you delivered big with The Secret of Snow! As big as the Great Lake Michigan with this book. Through your books you do for Michigan what the pure Michigan campaign does for our state; You make everyone fall in love with our Great Lakes State, and they too become smitten with the mitten ❤ I loved this heartwarming story 🥰

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lani

    A must read for anyone who has a fascination with weather and/meteorology. Interesting and not glossed over in any way, the descriptions of Sonny's job are important to the big picture. Sonny feels she can save lives through her forecasts and is desperate to do so and this is what drives the story. This is a substantial book of fiction with a middle aged character who has some real baggage, but has been a responsible adult and found a fulfilling career which she is in danger of losing. There is a A must read for anyone who has a fascination with weather and/meteorology. Interesting and not glossed over in any way, the descriptions of Sonny's job are important to the big picture. Sonny feels she can save lives through her forecasts and is desperate to do so and this is what drives the story. This is a substantial book of fiction with a middle aged character who has some real baggage, but has been a responsible adult and found a fulfilling career which she is in danger of losing. There is ageism at play, which don't let anyone fool you, it is a real life issue in companies all over. When she returns home to work as a local weather girl, she has to deal with even more problems as she reconnects with old friends and family, meets new people and has a romantic interest. Someone is also out to get her, but who? There are also some beautiful moments in this book involving snow, as you might imagine from the book title, which reminded me of snows we used to have when I was a child. This book delves into the reason behind the saying, 'you can't go home again.' Home can be a welcoming refuge or a scary last resort. How does it end up for Sonny? You'll have to read it to find out.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    I listened to this on audiobook. While I enjoyed the snowy setting and the mom character, I found the main character Sonny to be hard to like throughout the book. I felt a lot of her long suffering interior monologue was too much for my taste. I was often checking how much longer in the book there was to listen before it ended. I usually enjoy the author’s books so maybe this one just didn’t come at the right time for me.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jliongrrrl

    It was so nice to read a book with a main character who is middle aged. I always enjoy Viola Shipman’s novels and this was no exception. This book makes me want to visit Palm Springs and Michigan!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Barbara Schultz

    Sonny Dunes is a popular TV Meteorologist AKA ‘Weather Gal” in Palm Springs who gets fired. She does get an offer at a small station near her hometown in Michigan. Although Palm Spring resident can view the awesome snow on the mountains ~ Michigan snow can be magical. (Although I have lived in SoCal any years, we did live in Illinois and can remember the snow’s secret of being magical!) I like and then disliked Sonny. I wondered how a person with a name Sonny could be so angry (perhaps because she Sonny Dunes is a popular TV Meteorologist AKA ‘Weather Gal” in Palm Springs who gets fired. She does get an offer at a small station near her hometown in Michigan. Although Palm Spring resident can view the awesome snow on the mountains ~ Michigan snow can be magical. (Although I have lived in SoCal any years, we did live in Illinois and can remember the snow’s secret of being magical!) I like and then disliked Sonny. I wondered how a person with a name Sonny could be so angry (perhaps because she spells it with an ‘o’?) Sonny’s real name is Amberrose Murphy. We do find out why she is so angry. I am not a big Chick Lt fan but have become a fan of Wade Rouse’s stories. Plus I always love a good Christmas story Note: As you probably already know Wade Rouse chose his grandmother’s name Viola Shipman as his pen name. He states he grew up with her in the Ozarks and her extraordinary life was filled with beauty, hope as well as tragedy and is his inspiration for so many of his stories. Here is a link for more info. https://waderouse.com/about/ I always enjoy reading the Author’s Acknowledgements ~ a fun insight to the motivation for the story. In this case it is called “A Personal Letter To Readers”; which is a story in itself. This is his first Holiday story and is based on a very personal memory ~a very personal one. Be sure you to read it. I also enjoyed his ‘Acknowledgements’ as well as the Reader’s Guide. Want to thank NetGalley and Harlequin Trade Publishing for this eGalley. This file has been made available to me before publication in an early form for an honest professional review. Publishing Release Date scheduled for October 26, 2021

  22. 4 out of 5

    Johanna

    Sonny Dunes is a 50-year-old meteorologist and tv personality in Palm Springs. But this is the cutthroat and superficial world of tv broadcasting and her boss is a bratty little rich kid with zero experience, so he fires her to replace her with a busty female Artificial Intelligence algorithm. In retaliation, Sonny gets drunk and barges on set to denounce the whole situation in a humiliating and career-destroying tirade on live television. Tail tucked between her leg and with zero other prospects Sonny Dunes is a 50-year-old meteorologist and tv personality in Palm Springs. But this is the cutthroat and superficial world of tv broadcasting and her boss is a bratty little rich kid with zero experience, so he fires her to replace her with a busty female Artificial Intelligence algorithm. In retaliation, Sonny gets drunk and barges on set to denounce the whole situation in a humiliating and career-destroying tirade on live television. Tail tucked between her leg and with zero other prospects, Sonny is forced to return to her childhood home in northern Michigan in the middle of winter to take a job offered to her by a former classmate at the local tv station. Now all the ghosts of Sonny's past, all the reasons she left town and changed her name are coming back to haunt her. Enjoyable, quick-paced, but I found it vaguely unsatisfying by the end. The romantic interest is rushed and totally unnecessary (there was enough to unpack here without throwing in a romantic entanglement and throwing in a romance on top of it was overkill and distraction). Some of the scenes in which Sonny's trying to come to terms with the past, where there was really an opportunity for some really interesting but difficult conversations, were instead rushed and unrealistically easy. It just didn't ring true at all.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    The Secret of Snow is a story of past hurts and regrets and learning to forgive and forget and move on. As readers of Viola Shipman well know, this author honors his grandmother by using her name as a pen name. His descriptions of the small towns and cities in Michigan make me want to jump in the car and head to these locations for a visit or a vacation. I want to meet the people that make up these small communities and call them my friends. In this book, the author perfectly captures winter in The Secret of Snow is a story of past hurts and regrets and learning to forgive and forget and move on. As readers of Viola Shipman well know, this author honors his grandmother by using her name as a pen name. His descriptions of the small towns and cities in Michigan make me want to jump in the car and head to these locations for a visit or a vacation. I want to meet the people that make up these small communities and call them my friends. In this book, the author perfectly captures winter in Michigan and also captured my heart once again in this story about a middle age meteorologist who loses her job in Palm Springs, California and heads to her hometown of Traverse City, Michigan where she learns to not overthink things and to live in the moment. I read many different genres of books. I am not a big Chick Lit or Romance novel fan, but when I need a change from reading about the tragedies of WWII, or murder mysteries, or family dramas, I know that I can find a feel good, heart warming story in a book by Viola Shipman, just like this one. This book is perfect for fans of Mary Kay Andrews, Debbie Macomber, Kristy Woodson Harvey, and Mary Alice Monroe. My sincere thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin Trade Publishing for sending me a digital ARC of this book to read and review. Publication date: 10/26/21.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Pam

    I received an electronic ARC from Harlequin Trade Publishing through NetGalley. Shipman creates characters that connect with many readers. They relate to the emotions shared in the present and the grief held over from the past. Sonny is a meteorologist who chose this career due tragedy in her family. Her commitment to weather prediction comes from her hope/need to save lives to atone for the death she could not stop in her family. Readers meet her when she is fired for being too old for the posit I received an electronic ARC from Harlequin Trade Publishing through NetGalley. Shipman creates characters that connect with many readers. They relate to the emotions shared in the present and the grief held over from the past. Sonny is a meteorologist who chose this career due tragedy in her family. Her commitment to weather prediction comes from her hope/need to save lives to atone for the death she could not stop in her family. Readers meet her when she is fired for being too old for the position in California. She has a drunken meltdown on air and flees home to Michigan to restart her career. She's helped by a college acquaintance who wanted to be a friend and her mom who wants her to heal and stop running from the past. Yes, there is a romance involved but it blends in with the overall healing message from Shipman. Traverse City, Michigan is lovely in the winter and makes the perfect setting for the various analogies drawn with weather terms and life. The descriptions capture the beauty of the season and place readers in the midst of the winter fun.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Susan • BryantParkBooks

    The Secret of Snow was love at first sight for me. This cover is so beautiful! Luckily for me, I also loved the inside. It’s a 5 star read! The Secret of Snow tells the story of Sonny Dunes, a Palm Springs meteorologist who loses her job and goes a little crazy live on the air. She is forced to move home to northern Michigan with her mother and luckily ends up with a job as a meteorologist for the local news station. They are down on their luck and they hope Sonny can turn their ratings around. The Secret of Snow was love at first sight for me. This cover is so beautiful! Luckily for me, I also loved the inside. It’s a 5 star read! The Secret of Snow tells the story of Sonny Dunes, a Palm Springs meteorologist who loses her job and goes a little crazy live on the air. She is forced to move home to northern Michigan with her mother and luckily ends up with a job as a meteorologist for the local news station. They are down on their luck and they hope Sonny can turn their ratings around. Not everyone is happy they brought someone in who left the area, and Sonny is a real fish out of water after having lived in the California sunshine for over a decade. Her antics reminded me a lot of the Renee Zellweger movie, New in Town. More than just moving back to her hometown and very cold, very snowy weather is the heartache of her sister who died tragically when she was just a kid and her father who passed more recently. Sonny has never gotten over the loss of her sister and blames herself for her death. Her mom also is still dealing with the death of her family and she and Sonny have some lovely moments discussing grief. This book was just so beautiful and heartfelt. Sonny really has a lot of emotions to work through and her first reaction is always to runaway. I absolutely loved it; and it also got me so hyped for snowy, winter weather. Although I’m not sure I could handle the amount of snow they get in the book! Thank you so much to @viola_shipman, @authorwaderouse, @graydonhousebooks and #tandemliterary for my gifted copy.

  26. 5 out of 5

    ROBIN RUIZ

    “I believe in life, I believe the good outweighs the bad. I believe we’re on a journey here that is filled with beauty in pain, happiness and horrors, highs and lows, But it is a journey we must take because we never know the impact our lives and love will have on others.” Sonny Dunes is fifty, recently fired and has had a “breakdown” on air. She needs to start over and so she returns home to Michigan.. in the Winter and the ghosts she has run away from the last few decades…. Slowly turning back “I believe in life, I believe the good outweighs the bad. I believe we’re on a journey here that is filled with beauty in pain, happiness and horrors, highs and lows, But it is a journey we must take because we never know the impact our lives and love will have on others.” Sonny Dunes is fifty, recently fired and has had a “breakdown” on air. She needs to start over and so she returns home to Michigan.. in the Winter and the ghosts she has run away from the last few decades…. Slowly turning back into Amberrose Murphy. Mason knows loss and love and everything in between. He wants a future with Sonny but Sonny has a lot of past healing to overcome. I loved all the characters in this book and I love how the Michigan Winter became the strongest character of all. The story of love, loss, second chances, and being yourself!!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Tracie

    At age 50, meteorologist "Sonny Dunes" is fired from her job in Palm Springs, California to be replaced by an AI meteorologist to interest the younger demographic. So after making a scene on her network that goes viral, she decides to go back to her home town in northern Michigan. An old acquaintance Lisa, at the Traverse City news offers her a job, but she has to start over again with stories filmed outside in bitter cold. Sonny is not a very likeable character in the beginning but as the story At age 50, meteorologist "Sonny Dunes" is fired from her job in Palm Springs, California to be replaced by an AI meteorologist to interest the younger demographic. So after making a scene on her network that goes viral, she decides to go back to her home town in northern Michigan. An old acquaintance Lisa, at the Traverse City news offers her a job, but she has to start over again with stories filmed outside in bitter cold. Sonny is not a very likeable character in the beginning but as the story unfolds, readers learn of a family tragedy and why she left as a young woman. She takes a young cameraman, nicknamed Icicle under her wing and meets the charming head of the Chamber of Commerce, Mason, who have faced hardships also. Her mother is a wonderful character and winter and Lake Michigan are characters in themselves. As a Detroiter who left Michigan for New Mexico to get away from gloomy, dark winters, the author makes me appreciate winter as a time to reflect and maybe make changes before spring training starts.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Nicola Short

    “Life’s as short as one blink of God’s eye, but in that blink, we forget what matters most” A heartwarming story about finding happiness during adversity. When midlife crisis hits Sonny Dunes with a vengeance, how will she handle all that’s been thrown at her? I always enjoy jumping into a Viola Shipman aka Wade Rouse book. The Secret of Snow was a enjoyable read though I felt the plot was just a bit drawn out/longer then it needed to be. I lived in Michigan for 8 years and have to say I LOVED all “Life’s as short as one blink of God’s eye, but in that blink, we forget what matters most” A heartwarming story about finding happiness during adversity. When midlife crisis hits Sonny Dunes with a vengeance, how will she handle all that’s been thrown at her? I always enjoy jumping into a Viola Shipman aka Wade Rouse book. The Secret of Snow was a enjoyable read though I felt the plot was just a bit drawn out/longer then it needed to be. I lived in Michigan for 8 years and have to say I LOVED all the Michigan information….so interesting and brought back many fond memories of my life living in Bay City. I thoroughly enjoyed the authors notes at the end of the book! Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and author for the opportunity to read this book for my honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own.

  29. 5 out of 5

    N

    This latest book by Viola Shipman is a winner! I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Sunny Dunes and her quest to find herself. Follow her story from sunny Palm Springs , CA to snowy Travis City, MI. She’s a meteorologist who loses her job to an artificial weather girl but is fortunate to find another position. The problem is that it takes her backward in many ways….job wise and to the trauma of her childhood. There are some great characters in this novel and you’ll certainly learn a lot about weat This latest book by Viola Shipman is a winner! I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Sunny Dunes and her quest to find herself. Follow her story from sunny Palm Springs , CA to snowy Travis City, MI. She’s a meteorologist who loses her job to an artificial weather girl but is fortunate to find another position. The problem is that it takes her backward in many ways….job wise and to the trauma of her childhood. There are some great characters in this novel and you’ll certainly learn a lot about weather forecasting and also how to make the perfect snow angel. There is also a sweet bonus short story included that will get you ready for the upcoming holiday. I gave this book a 👍🏻and a deserved ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️. Happy reading!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Diana

    Family problems A great story of family and troubles with lives as they try to get better. Michigan is a state of Winter festivals around the Great Lakes. When a meteorologist who was born here comes home to try and put her life back together after living in the warm weather it is full of problems with her Mom who has missed her and her friends who have been left behind for years. A real page turner that keeps you rooting for the underdog and makes you pray she finds her back at back home again. A Family problems A great story of family and troubles with lives as they try to get better. Michigan is a state of Winter festivals around the Great Lakes. When a meteorologist who was born here comes home to try and put her life back together after living in the warm weather it is full of problems with her Mom who has missed her and her friends who have been left behind for years. A real page turner that keeps you rooting for the underdog and makes you pray she finds her back at back home again. A book worth reading.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...