ReadersMagnet Review recommends these five stories of hope and redemption this Christmas season.

Wild by Cheryl Strayed

Wild is among the notable books that came out in 2012. It is a memoir and the second book by Cheryl Strayed. The #1 New York Times Bestseller covers the story of Cheryl’s impulsive journey of hiking more than a thousand miles. With no hiking experience, Cheryl hiked the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State alone. When she was twenty-two, Cheryl felt she had lost everything. Her mother’s death, her family, scattered, and her marriage on the verge of collapse contributed to her feeling of guilt and helplessness. Four years later, she would decide that would change her life and form the backbone of this amazing book of redemption and healing.

The Kitchen God’s Wife by Amy Tan

Amy Tan is best known for her debut masterpiece, The Joy Luck Club. The bestselling book was later adapted into a film by Disney, a commercial success. Two years after the success of her debut novel, Amy Tan released another bestseller, The Kitchen God’s Wife, in 1991. It is a heartwarming mother and daughter story about well-kept secrets, strained relationships, forgiveness, and healing. Those who adore Amy Tan’s first novel will genuinely love The Kitchen God’s Wife. A story that spans several decades, including China during World War II and the character’s life after moving to America in 1949, The Kitchen God’s Wife is an epic story of memories and personal adventures.

The Beginning…The End…Anew! by Zedart Hodges

The Beginning…The End…Anew! is a story of a drug addict and returning to God with faith and redemption by Zedart Hodges. We may have heard many redemption stories about alcoholism and substance abuse, but Zedart Hodges’ memoir offers a different and unique narrative. In this outstanding book, Hodges focused not only on his bout with drugs. In his memoir, the author also chose to highlight how to overcome addiction and make a difference in the lives of those who are still in the darkest chapters of their lives. The Beginning…The End…Anew! is an inspiring work blended with personal narrative, a guidebook, and a book filled with hope, faith, and gratitude for second chances in life. The Beginning…The End…Anew! by Zedart Hodges is a must-read book for those who want to be inspired to begin life anew.

The Noel Letters by Richard Paul Evans

The Noel Letters is the fourth book in the “Noel” novels by Richard Paul Evans. In this 2020 novel, #1 New York Times bestselling author shares another story of love, belonging, and family. Noel Post, an editor for a major New York publishing house, returns to her childhood home in Salt Lake City after twenty long years. She travels home to see her estranged and dying father. However, Noel did not expect that her quick trip would turn out to be a life-changing journey. Noel inherits the bookstore her father fought to keep alive. The Noel Letters feature a trail of epistles leading to a Christmas revelation, which sets the story of the healing miracle of hope and forgiveness.

Wave by Sonali Deraniyagala

The 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami left almost 250,000 people dead. It was the largest earthquake in the 21st century. Sonali Deraniyagala and her family were among those who witnessed the tragedy. She lost her parents, husband, and two sons, and the event left her traumatized and suicidal for several years. In her memoir, Wave: Life and Memories after the Tsunami, published by Alfred A. Knopf in 2013, Sonali shares her childhood and life before the horrific event and how the tsunami forever changed her. Sonali manages to share this heart-wrenching story despite suffering invisible wounds and trauma. Sonali’s courage and determination to heal are inspiring.