Twelve Trees of Christmas on Lifetime

Category: Television and Streaming


“Life is about change.” That’s what librarian Cherie (Lindy Booth) is told when she confronts a situation that is about to turn the entire neighborhood on its head. Lindy Booth and Robin Dunne star in the Lifetime original holiday film Twelve Trees of Christmas, a family story that confronts the issues of change and progress.


When Cherie hears the local library is going to be torn down after the holidays and replaced with modern condominiums, she gets furious. The Shaughnessy family donated the library – a converted mansion – to the city decades ago. It has character, history, and more than anything else, provides a safe sanctuary for kids to enjoy reading and explore stories. Cherie decides to ask Tony Shaughnessy (Robin Dunne), the grandson of the benefactor who just happens to live in her building, to reconsider tearing down the library. As you would expect, Tony is considerate but is determined to have his condo project on the site.


Then Cherie goes directly to his grandmother, the matriarch of the family. She is caring, but defers the final decision to her grandson.


In one final attempt to show the Shaughnessy family, and more specifically Tony Shaughnessy, how important the library is to the community, Cherie and the library sponsor a tree decorating contest. There will be twelve trees in all and each tree will be decorated in a theme depicting what the library means to the individual decorators. This is her last ditch effort and a chance to get the neighbors together to demonstrate how important the library is to the community and the lives of the residents.


“The future belongs to the next generation,” Cherie is told. This is a new generation of Ebooks and Google. Kids today don’t know what an encyclopedia is. So, why do they need a library? The traditions of the past collide with the high tech world of the present in this movie that highlights a serious situation that is no doubt taking place around the country.

When I was young I looked forward to my weekly visits to the local library, story time, picking out books to borrow, and the tradition of going to the library handed down from my parents to myself. I often wonder if kids today know how to maneuver around a library. Yes, technology is making life easier and more accessible, but it is not always a good thing. Personally, I love holding a book in my hand. Ebooks just aren’t the same. But if this new generation grows up without the experience of holding books and looking through bookshelves, they won’t know enough to miss what my generation had enjoyed. They also won’t have the same experiences of story time, wandering through the aisles of books, and the pride of getting their first library card. Progress is a good thing…sometimes.


Twelve Trees of Christmas premiers Saturday, November 16, 2013 on Lifetime. I won’t spoil the ending. You’ll have to watch to find out if the library stays or goes.

About the Author

Francine Brokaw has been covering all aspects of the entertainment business for 20 years. She also writes about technology and has been a travel writer for the past 12 years. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as Internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet: The World of Entertainment Journalists, from Sourced Media Books.

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