On Tour with Prism Book Tours
It’s the season for giving…and starting over?
A reindeer farm without Santa wouldn’t be Christmas in Marissa Gray’s Alaskan hometown. Luckily Chris Allen’s there to pinch-hit, although for Marissa, seeing her ex-fiancé again brings back memories of what might have been.
Ten years after their breakup, the feelings between the wildlife biologist and blue-eyed fisherman are stronger than ever. Only now there’s a foster kid in the mix, as well as the shocking crime that cost Marissa her job and her family’s security. She and Chris need to find their way to a meeting of minds and hearts to make this truly a season for second chances…
Character Interview with Oliver from
A GIFT FOR SANTA
Today, we’re talking with Oliver Gray, owner of a reindeer farm in Alaska. Oliver, how do you make a living as a reindeer farmer?
Tourism, mostly. In the summer, people come out to visit the farm. We have goats, rabbits, chickens, and a pig as well as the reindeer for the children to interact with, and we have a nice picnic area over by the barn.
This time of year, we do Christmas parties, with reindeer rides and an appearance by Santa Claus.
Can you tell us what led you to start your reindeer farm?
My wife, Becky, and I were living in downtown Anchorage, working office jobs, and one of our neighbors was Star the Reindeer. You know about Star? The reindeer who lives in downtown Anchorage and goes for walks around town and along the park strip? Well Becky and I got to be friends with Mrs. Stewart, Star’s owner. We’d go along on their walks and talk with the kids who gathered to pet Star. Now I was only thirty-seven, but my beard was already turning white, and one day one of the kids asked if I was Santa Claus. I looked at Becky, and I could see she was thinking the same thing I was. You see, we couldn’t have children of our own, but this would be a way to share the magic with all sorts of children. So we quit our jobs, found some land for sale, and started the reindeer farm.
Where did you get your reindeer?
Becky and I made a trip to Norway to talk to some of the reindeer herders there, and once we got to know them, they offered us breeding stock for a good price. Of course, getting the reindeer from Norway to Anchorage wasn’t cheap or easy, but we imported two bulls and ten cows, and our herd has grown from that start.
You took a risk. Do you ever wish you you’d stayed with those office jobs?
Not for a minute. It’s been almost thirty years since we started the farm, and I can honestly say I’ve never regretted it. There were struggles, certainly, but overall the reindeer farm has been the third greatest blessing of my life.
Well, the first is my wife, Becky, the most wonderful partner a man could ever have. Second is Marissa, our niece, who came to live with us when she was ten. She loved growing up on the farm and taking care of the reindeer and other animals. In fact, she loved animals so much, she grew up to be a wildlife biologist.
Is Marissa still active on the farm?
Well, she’s here now, taking care of the animals and playing an elf at the parties. I’m having some health problems, you see, and Marissa had a bit of a career setback thanks to that rat she was dating at her old job. Lying, thieving – never mind. Anyway, I’m sure it will all get straightened out soon.
In the meantime, since I can’t play my usual role of Santa Claus, Chris Allen is filling in. Good man, Chris. He and Marissa used to be engaged a long time ago, but they had a falling out. I’m not sure what it was all about, but I know she’s been avoiding him ever since. It’s a miracle Marissa agreed to work with Chris at all. But then, I’ve always said Christmas is the season for miracles. Maybe, before it’s all said and done, we can count on a few more.
Other Books in the Series
Where life’s currents take you…
Dana Raynott just traveled 3,600 miles to reunite with the brother who changed his name and fled to Alaska nineteen years ago. It’s impossible not to be moved by this wild, breathtaking state, even if Dana’s no closer to finding the answers she came here for.
Her brother’s best friend, Anchorage engineer Sam MacKettrick, might be able to help her. He’s strong and kind—a six-foot, irresistible blend of diverse cultures. He’s also haunted by a tragic family history with a startling connection to Dana’s past…
About the Author
when Beth Carpenter was a little girl, she read everything she could get her hands on, and entertained herself on the school bus by making up stories in her head. Not a lot has changed. She’s still consuming books like M&Ms, and spends her days creating happily-ever-afters for her imaginary friends.
She lives in Alaska and Arizona with her husband and an aggressively affectionate fifty-pound lap dog. She loves to hear from readers.
Hearts & Scribbles
A Night’s Dream of Books
Book Lover in Florida
Reading Is My SuperPower
Nicole’s Book Musings
It’s All About the Romance
underneath the covers
Inside the Mind of an Avid Reader
Teatime and Books
The Bookworm Chronicles
Deal Sharing Aunt
Mello & June, It’s a Book Thang!
I Am A Reader
Janices Book Reviews
Rockin’ Book Reviews
December 2nd: Grand Finale
Reindeer Prize Pack (US only), which includes:
- Large handcrafted quilted reindeer tote bag
- Signed Copy of The Alaskan Catch
- Reindeer Cookie Cutters
- Inflatable Reindeer Antler Ring-toss Game
$25 Amazon Gift Card (open internationally)
Ends December 6th