No one expects to find love in the middle of a snowstorm.
Hollie Douglas has always dreamed of a white Christmas: carollers, pudding, chestnuts roasting on an open fire. But in her dreams, she shared that fire’s hearth with a husband, and two months before her big day, her fiancé broke her heart and left.
Now, determined to go ahead with her honeymoon anyway, Hollie’s plans are going awry. It’s the day before Christmas Eve and she is stuck in the middle of a snowstorm in rural Canada. Thankfully, luck is on her side.
When Jim Bell braved a snowstorm to search for one of his orphaned animals, he didn’t expect he’d be rescuing a stranded Australian tourist too. A widower, Jim has been dreading another Christmas without his wife, and he wonders if offering the stranded Hollie shelter is something he can bear.
Jim quickly realises Hollie is carrying as much emotional baggage as him. But as he helps Hollie fulfil her dream of a white Christmas, the winter wonderland and spirit of Christmas may yet work their healing magic on both of them.
Christmas novellas are everywhere in the final third of the year, and while they make good, quick reads to get you in the mood for the season, they can also be a challenge because of that length. It’s hard to convince a reader of a happy ending when people have only just met (and especially when it involves travelling to the other side of the world to be with someone!), but I think Nicki Edwards did a better job than most.
I’ve been surprised by how many allegedly Christmas-themed books have very little to do with Christmas beyond their cover, but this one truly is a Christmas book. It has the snow and the lights and the presents. It is also not too cheesy, which is always a good thing!
While there’s some of the inevitable culture-clash stuff going on, I think this was on a MUCH more manageable level than most books like this. I might be in the minority, but I’m not a fan of the culture-clash thing in the age of the internet- when people have no excuse for being ignorant.
I will remind non-Australian readers that not all of us use slang like veggies and arvo! I’ve never said either word in my life!
It’s always a big danger for an author to compare their romantic leads to celebrities of the moment. Firstly, because it’s going to put your book right out of fashion – FAST. But worse, I’ve found there are very few authors who find the same people attractive that I do!
I had another romance ruined when at the start I was told the hero looked like Tom Hanks. I couldn’t get past that.
In this one, in our first meeting with the hero, we’re told he looks like an Australian guy named Chris Brown, who is a celebrity veterinarian (yes, really). To me, he looks like Guy Smiley, and there’s nothing attractive about a Muppet!
This makes for a good, fast read at this time of the year. I have noticed some reviewers would have preferred a more concrete ending to show us how things ended up, but coming from a family that is spread out across many continents, I don’t want the realities of visas, permanent residency and international marriage intruding on my book!
Review copy provided by NetGalley.