A few years ago, I came down with a doozy of a cold at the beginning of December. Spent all weekend in bed….which ended up being fortuitous, because I discovered the wonder of holiday movies. It was my introduction to the Hallmark channel, Lifetime and ABC Family’s slew of holiday happily ever afters. Sure, I’d seen (and loved ) White Christmas and Holiday Inn, but I didn’t realize there was such a large genre of completely over-the-top holiday immersion movies. Now, I’m an addict.
And it wasn’t until my editor asked me to write one that I realized there was an equally huge cache of Christmas-themed books. Holiday romance books are much the same as the movies, in that they hit all the good nerves. Think about it; not everyone likes camping, for example. No matter how engaging your characters, if you stick them in the woods for three hundred pages, it might not excite some readers. But Christmas, well, what’s not to like? (For the sake of this post revolving wholly around xmas books, let’s just agree to overlook the whole socio-economic and religious problems inherent with this thesis, okay?)
You’ve got the feel-good scenes with relatives and adorable, perfectly behaved kids. Bad relatives are campy-funny, but always come around in the end. There’s pretty snow (not the heavy, messy stuff that’s impossible to shovel), cookies and pies that apparently don’t make anyone gain a pound, festive decorations on every flat surface. A romance kindled over hot cocoa, in front of a roaring fireplace. And the themes always come back to celebrating the inherent goodness and love in everyone.
Basically, it gives you the fairytale version of Christmas, celebrating the best of the season. A holiday romance is like getting a hug from a book. A snow-dusted, cinnamon-smelling hug. Which, incidentally, is the same feeling I got when I wrote my Christmas novella!
Here’s the blurb for Ask Her At Christmas:
Caitlin McIntyre’s heart stops when her best friend drops to one knee and proposes. Kyle Lockhart never once hinted over the years that he has any idea she’s in love with him. Not wanting to jeopardize their friendship, she’s never let it slip. Good thing, too, since it turns out he’s only practicing—he’s about to propose to someone else.
A business merger might not be the most romantic reason to propose to a woman he barely knows, but Kyle’s determined to win the respect of the dying father who’s never seen him as quite good enough. Kyle’s always depended on Caitlin’s friendship, while trying to ignore the physical response she arouses. So he turns to her when it comes time to craft his proposal, not realizing his decision will affect their relationship, forever.
This Christmas, Kyle and Caitlin get one last chance to admit their feelings for each other, and find a mutual happily ever after, before he commits his life to another woman and Caitlin leaves town and him…for good.
What is your favorite thing about Christmas books – what keeps you coming back for more every holiday season?
For a chance to win a digital copy of Ask Her At Christmas, leave a comment answering Christi’s question. The winner will be drawn on Sunday. Good luck!