Chirp and Chatter Pages

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas Extravaganza: A Semi-Precious Christmas

by Jan Elder

On a bright, crisp December morning, jewelry store manager, Peridot Keaton-Jones, arrives at work expecting to find her beloved uncle, Marty. Instead, she’s greeted by the muzzle of a gun pressed to her temple. When thugs assault her, threaten her life, and steal thousands of dollars worth of jewelry, Peri can only pray her uncle is late for the first time in his life. 

Christopher Lane is a TV news cameraman in the right place at the right time. He witnesses the heist, calls the police, and offers help when Peri needs it most. She can't deny her attraction, but is he really her hero, or is he just after a story? And with Christmas right around the corner, can Peri and Chris avert a holiday disaster?

About Jan Elder

Jan Elder is an inspirational romance writer with a passion for telling stories other women can relate to on a deep level. She strives to write the kind of book that will strengthen the reader’s faith, introducing the reader to a loving and forgiving Lord who walks beside us in our daily lives, while also providing an entertaining and engrossing love story.

Happily married for thirteen years to loving (and supportive) husband, Steve, the two live in central Maryland along with Jamie (a chubby black and white tuxedo cat), and Shu-Shu (a willowy tortoiseshell cat). On the weekends, Jan and Steve comb the nearby countryside in search of the perfect ice cream flavor.


My first-ever Jan Elder book…and it was well worth the read.
First, there’s Peridot Keaton-Jones. Peri’s not your everyday romantic heroine with silly dreams of matrimony and over-sized stars in her eyes. She’s a sensible, down-to-earth, responsible young woman who manages her aging uncle’s jewelry store during the day and goes home to her two cats at night. Neither is Christopher Lane the typical knock-your-socks-off knight in shining armor. He’s a television news cameraman with an adorable little girl and unpleasant memories of a failed marriage. But when Peri’s life is in danger after she interrupts a heist on the jewelry store, Chris happens along—adorable little girl in tow—at just the right time to become a hero.
And that’s just the appetizer. It’s followed by an entrĂ©e of fun romance with a side of danger, and culminates with a sweet helping of happy-ever-after.
I like Jan Elder’s writing style, and especially enjoyed her portrayal of the heroine as an up-front, no-nonsense, WYSIWIG kind of gal. Christopher is the perfect foil to the heroine’s somewhat eccentric personality. 
Overall, a well-written, beautifully executed tale. The tantalizing taste of danger in the sub-story adds just the right amount of “extra.” A Semi-Precious Christmas is the perfect reason to steal away for an hour or so during the hustle and bustle of the holidays and treat yourself to a little Christmas romance.


What inspired you to write A Semi-Precious Christmas?

A few years ago, the jewelry store right up the road from my husband and I was robbed. The saleswoman we know best (yes, my husband is a sweetheart!) was threatened by the criminal. When she was relating the story of how the thug had pointed a gun at her face—half scaring her to death—I could see the residual fear in her eyes and feel her trembling angst down to my tippy toes. I got to thinking how I would feel and react if I were in the same situation. I put myself in my friend’s shoes and tried to relive the moment. And thus, a story was born!

What makes you laugh out loud?

I have two cats that make me crack up on a regular basis. They are both very “dog-like” and every night they “perform” in order to remind us that dinner time is right around the corner. Jamie (chubby black and white tuxedo, age nine) chatters up a storm and cocks her head winningly (at least in her estimation.) She’s even been known to bat her eyelashes. If that doesn’t work, she lands in your lap—surprise!

Shu-Shu (skinny tortoiseshell, age 14) is a little subtler with her efforts to win us over. She has a favorite toy she will drop at our feet. Then she will fall over on her side, ker-plunk (she also plops down when you say “bang” and rolls over on command.) Who could resist their antics?

Please share a verse of scripture that is especially meaningful to you, and why it is special? Do you usually insert a spiritual theme into your books?

When I started to write a few years back, I wanted whatever I came up with to be worth reading. It had to have a Christian message of some kind, subtle or broad, whatever the book required. It’s who I am, it’s what I know, but more importantly, there really is a reason I write. Psalm 9 has always meant a great deal to me, and now the first two verses hold a brand-new meaning.

I’m thanking you, God, from a full heart,
I’m writing the book on your wonders.
I’m whistling, laughing, and jumping for joy;
I’m singing your song, High God.

In A Semi-Precious Christmas, I wanted to show God’s perfect timing running throughout the book. Have you ever noticed that God shows up just when you need Him, and it’s often in the shape of a person? In the novella, He sent my hero, Chris, to help someone who desperately needed help. The Lord used officers, doctors, friends, a child, and even an unwilling accomplice to be His hands and His feet. God can take something terrible and turn it into something good.

But since I also write romance, the inevitable eligible guy and my heroine, Peridot, the single jewelry store manager, needed to find each other. They worked through their respective baggage together and in the end, it was their trust in God that saves the day.  


  1. Thanks so much, Delia, for having me on Chirp and Chatter! Even after Christmas I find holiday books irresistible and since I'm already in the mood I've started one for next year! God bless you and all of those amazing Christmas Extravaganza readers in 2017!

    1. It's the perfect time to start next year's Extravaganza treat! :) Thank you for visiting Chirp 'N Chatter, Jan! I truly enjoyed your book, and your interview.