Christmas in Snow ValleyChristmas in Snow Valley is packed with six wonderful Christmas novellas sure to bring romance into your holiday season. Snow Valley, Montana, is a small community with the tradition of doing Christmas big. Festivities begin with tree lighting in the town square the day after Thanksgiving and continue until the culminating romantic Christmas Ball. From the Polar Express to a Winter Carnival, there’s something for every wonder-filled child—and every couple who’s in love—or about to be.
- An Unexpected Kiss by Cindy Roland Anderson Lucy Phillips doesn’t want to spend her Christmas vacation dodging her ex-boyfriend, so when he turns up at the airport to give her a ride home, Lucy panics and asks a complete stranger to kiss her. Although the kiss is incredible, Lucy never expects to see the guy again. Is it bad luck or destiny when Lucy comes down with a sore throat and the new doctor in Snow Valley is none other than the guy she kissed at the airport?
- Feels Like Love by Jeanette Lewis Christmas in Snow Valley is the perfect way for April Winston to introduce her city slicker fiancé, Scott Mecham, to life on a farm. If only Wade Hadley, hometown boy and high school sweetheart, will cooperate! But Wade has no intention of letting April go without a fight. This Christmas, Wade is determined to overcome their painful past and show April that she already has what she’s been seeking all along.
- Full Court Devotion by Cami Checketts Kazlyn is too busy with her schooling and future plans to enjoy life, let alone fall in love with a man who has heartbreak written all over him. Tyrese Hamilton, a college basketball star and major heartthrob, is intrigued when Kazlyn doesn't pursue him or even seem interested. Ty's career is in jeopardy, and he needs a miracle and Kazlyn to save him.
- The Christmas Eve Kiss by Taylor Hart When Molly O’Hare gets a prediction that she will kiss her true love on Christmas Eve, she thinks it’s utterly ridiculous. But when she gets teamed up with Kevin Snow, aka her ex-boyfriend, to decorate a Christmas tree, things start to change. Too bad getting over the past is hard and seeing him kiss another girl is even harder. Now Molly is left with a choice—run away from home and heartbreak or let Christmas work out a miracle all of its own.
- Risking it all for Love by Kimberley Montpetit Succumbing to family pressure, Jessica Mason reluctantly comes home for Christmas. Ever since her high school boyfriend's death from a car accident three years earlier, Jessica and religion have not been compatible. So, when she visits Michael’s grave, she's surprised to meet the handsome James Douglas, Pastor John’s nephew, who’s studying for the ministry. James can not only dish back Jessica’s finely-tuned sarcasm but understands grief all too well, turning Jessica’s world upside down. Is she ready to take another risk on love?
- Blue Christmas by Lucy McConnell As head of Snow Valley hospital's fundraising effort, Paisley Hackett barely has time to organize the craft show, cookie decorating party, and the annual Christmas Ball. What she doesn't have time for is falling in love with Clay Jett, the incredibly handsome bass player who sweeps into town. She's been burned by a tourist romance before and, with everything going on, Paisley will have to work overtime to protect her heart from Clay and his swoon-worthy ballads.
- MY THOUGHTS: I've read two of these stories so far. The first was Full Court Devotion by Cami Checketts. Kazlyn is too busy for love, thankfully Tyrese is up of a challenge. I enjoy Cami's writing and this story was no exception. I love her ability to take you down twists and turns, keeping the story fresh and exciting. I really enjoyed this story!
Here is an excerpt:
Full Court Devotion by Cami Checketts
Shivering in the vicious canyon breeze, Kazlyn skirted a group of slow-moving girls and ran directly into the back of an insanely tall guy. Her bag flung from her fingers and books scattered in the crusty snow piled up next to the sidewalk.
Tall dude turned and gave her a friendly smile. “No, it’s Tyrese.” His smile grew as he looked her over, white teeth flashing against his smooth, dark skin. “Most people call me Ty, but you can call me anything you want to.”
“Ugh!” She ignored his flirtations and pretty-boy face. You’d think a man that large would have a face like Andre the Giant. Grabbing at books, she shoved them into her bag.
“Here, let me get that for you.” Ty reached farther across the snow bank than she could; with octopus arms it was probably easy.
“Thanks,” she muttered.
He retrieved a few more books and her peppermint lip gloss. Of course, he would find the only feminine thing she had time for during school. His grin got even bigger. “This looks…” He glanced over her face before focusing on her lips. “Yummy.”
Could the guy get any more arrogant? Kazlyn held out her hand. He surrendered the books, but held onto the lip gloss. She sighed, shoved the books into her bag, then held out her hand again. He placed the lip gloss into her palm and wrapped his warm fingers around her freezing ones.
“Wouldn’t want you to lose that.” Ty squeezed her hand. “Maybe you’ll give me a sample one day.”
Her eyebrows shot up. She yanked her fingers from his and stomped around him. “No free samples, buddy.” She tossed a challenging look over her shoulder, almost hoping he’d call her bluff. He winked and grinned.
Kazlyn whipped back around, smacking herself in the face with her long, blonde hair. First, she ran into him. Then, she whacked herself with her own hair.
He laughed. “Maybe I could be an exception.”
Kazlyn kept walking. He caught up to her in four steps, though she’d taken ten. Curse his long legs. She couldn’t resist looking at him and almost wished she could dislodge the picture—fabulous smile, dark eyes surrounded with thick lashes she couldn’t have achieved with heaps of mascara, and chocolate skin.
“Why are you following me?”
“I’m not. I’m walking next to you.”
She huffed. “That’s because you walk so stinking fast. If you didn’t have giraffe legs, you’d be following me.”
He laughed. “Come on. I have more muscle on my legs than most giraffes.”
She allowed him a small smile. “Knobbly-kneed giraffe.”
“I told you it’s Tyrese.” He pumped his eyebrows. “Now, you get to share your name with me.”
“Not happening. I don’t tell strange men my name.”
“Aw, come on. You already gave me a hug from the back.”
“I ran into you!”
“And I forgave you immediately.” He winked. “I’m sure most people would forgive that beautiful face of anything.”
Kazlyn wanted to glare at him, but she couldn’t. Her dad used to say a similar line to her. “Are you always a schmoozer?”
That brought her another chuckle. “Didn’t your momma teach you not to call names?”
“Didn’t your momma teach you not to follow people?”
He laughed louder. “She said it was okay if the girl was really pretty.”
- The second story was An Unexpected Kiss by Cindy Roland Anderson. Loved it. I doubt I'd ever kiss a stranger, but the story was wonderful nevertheless. It is a great way to get into the Christmas spirit! I loved the inaction between Cole and Lucy, (especially the kisses ;) as she works to change Cole's mind about Christmas. This is a fun story. Good job, Cindy!
Here is an excerpt:
An Unexpected Kiss by Cindy Roland Anderson
Unlocking her door, Lucy opened it and slid in behind the wheel. She closed the door, knowing Cole probably wondered what was wrong with her. Just as she started the car, a knock on the driver’s side window made her jump.
Cole stood there watching her, his face reflecting both a mixture of confusion and amusement. Lucy lowered the window, and he leaned down so they were eye level.
“Are you running away from me?”
Why did he have to be so direct?
He grinned. “That’s the second time you’ve done this. I’m beginning to think you don’t like me.”
She snorted an unladylike laugh. “Right.”
“Don’t laugh. I’m getting a complex.”“
If it’s any consolation, it’s me not you.”
That earned her another perplexed look. “That’s a little cliché. I’m sure you can do better than that.”
Yeah, she could, but she didn’t dare blurt out how much she liked kissing him, and admit that that was what scared her.
Inadvertently, her gaze dropped to his mouth. She noticed the faint shadow of dark whiskers along his jaw, and she suddenly wanted to kiss him again.
“Aren’t you freezing?” she asked, hoping to distract him as much as herself.
“Yes.” He unexpectedly rounded the car, opened the door and took the passenger seat. “That’s better.” He held out his bare hands in front of the vent, which blew mildly warm air.
The scent of his cologne permeated the air, and having him so close started a slow burn inside Lucy’s belly. Who needed heating systems with this man around?
“What are you doing?”
“Trying to get warm.” He looked her way, that smile back on his face. “And trying to get a straight answer out of you about why you keep running away from me.”
“I don’t want to talk about it.”
“Is it about that kiss we just shared?” His blue eyes twinkled. “Or about the ones in the airport?”
Both. “I said I don’t want to talk about it.”
“Okay. What do you want to talk about?”
She laughed. “I never said I wanted to talk about anything.”
Cole studied her silently, like he was really trying to figure her out. Lucy felt the intensity of his gaze, and was unable to pull her eyes away. The interior of the car seemed to shrink, and the air pulsed with an electrical energy that prickled her skin with goose flesh.
As if a giant gravitational force was at work between them, she felt herself leaning toward him. Cole slanted closer until she felt his warm breath mingle with hers. She should move away, make some wisecrack…anything to stop this crazy attraction.
Instead, her eyes fluttered closed as their lips connected. Slowly, he moved his mouth against hers, and like a beautifully choreographed dance, she returned the kiss. Heat infused every part of her, leaving her limbs languid.
Her heart thumped wildly, and a sigh escaped as he deepened the kiss. Barley cognizant of her surroundings, Lucy was both relieved and frustrated when Cole ended the kiss and edged slightly back.
“Lucy, I’m coming to pick you up tomorrow.” His voice was rough with emotion, his eyes serious.