What began as an impersonal-but-cheerful holiday gift for a soldier far from home becomes so much more…
Sergeant Tate McAuliffe, stationed in Afghanistan, opens his Christmas care package from Australia and is stunned by both its contents and the sender.
Fun-loving Christmas tree designer Layla Preston is a breath of fresh air for loner Tate. Although they’ve never met, their email friendship quickly develops and their feelings for each other deepen.
But Layla knows the heartache that loving a soldier can bring and when Tate is injured, her deep-seated fear drives them apart. With their relationship in tatters, can Layla and Tate work through their differences, so Layla can welcome Tate home for Christmas?
This was a nice little contemporary romance without any Christmas cheese! I liked a lot of things about it, including the gradual and sensible way hero and heroine fell in love – over long distance email no less. I really like a well-written contemporary with Australian characters. I don’t know whether it’s familiarity that makes it seem more “real” to me than many books, or if it’s true what some people say and that Australian/Kiwi authors just generally do a good job with this genre.
Home For Christmas is a fairly quick read, but I didn’t feel like the story was rushed. There was quite a lot of angst in the characters’ backstories, but that’s quite common these days. Also, I thought it was handled much better than it usually is. Nobody was overly tragic and melodramatic – a pet hate of mine!
Silly, but something I didn’t like was how the 7th of January was repeatedly referred to as “Orthodox Christmas”. It’s NOT. What is it is the date people who follow the old calendar celebrate. I’m Ukrainian Catholic, and as with millions of people like me, have spent my whole life explaining that no, I’m not Orthodox just because I celebrate Christmas and Easter on different dates!
However, that’s a really silly thing to complain about, and a teeny tiny part of the story.
This is another one of those contemporary romances you read at Christmastime if you’re not sure you like Christmas-themed romances. Not cheesy, not featuring clichéd characters. Not any of those things.
I thought it was well done.
Review copy provided by NetGalley.