I just finished reading another great book: ALPHABET OF DREAMS by Susan Fletcher.
I just couldn't put it down. I loved her book Shadow Spinner and this one also plays in Persia. It's the story of the famous Three Wise Men. She brings them to life in this gripping story full of amazing details. You can smell the camels, hear the copper bells, see the stable and the star. It's not at all a Christmas story but gives the background of a story we are all familiar with. Highly recommended for avid readers of 12 and up.