Blame It on the Mistletoe
by Nicole Michaels
October 14, 2014
St. Martin's Paperbacks
Genre: Contemporary Romance
(Contains: sex and mature language)
Source: eARC for Honest review
Sometimes all it takes is a leap of faith for Christmas to work its own magic in BLAME IT ON THE MISTLETOE
’Tis the season for small-town Missouri boutique owner Brooke Abbott to get crafty. Much as she adores making art for art’s sake—decorating windows, designing ornaments, crafting the perfect present for under the tree—this Christmas she needs the gift of good customers. Lots of them. Sweet Opal Studios will go under if she can’t do some serious business before the New Year…and she has no time to lose. What Brooke needs is an honest-to-goodness miracle. Instead, she finds a burglar lurking in the back room of her shop. And here she thought the holidays couldn’t get any worse! Or maybe things just got a lot better. Turns out the burglar is none other than Alex Coleman—local bad boy slash legendary heartthrob, childhood best friend to Brooke’s older brother, and…future landlord? That is the question. He’s come home for the holidays to see his grandmother, make peace with his distant mother, and settle his grandfather’s estate, an estate that includes the building that houses Sweet Opal. What he never expected was to bump into a grown-up Brooke, whose spirit, charm, and irresistible good looks give him pause. Should he go back to Oregon as planned, or give small-town life a chance? The only thing Alex knows for sure is that before he walks out that door, he’s going to get Brooke beneath the mistletoe, where anything can happen…
What a sweet, tender, and romantic holiday read! I really enjoyed Brooke and Alex's love story. Alex was Brooke's brother's best friend in high school, but they haven't seen each other since graduation. Many years and lots of sadness and difficulty along the way later, Brooke mistakes Alex for a burglar when he's suddenly back in town for a few days. A few sparks turn into a whole lot more between these two. But Alex's temporary status and family revelations, combined with Brooke's business stress and heartbreaking past, equal a road the two must traverse together if there's going to be any hope of them turning their temporary situation into something permanent.
I loved getting to know Brooke and Alex. I found learning about their past and discovering their present to be really well paced. I was never bored and flew through the pages. The way the characters were developed made them so endearing. I couldn't stop rooting for them. Their chemistry, connection, and camaraderie were delightful. Plus, there were other layers that gave this story such a well-rounded feeling, tying in family and friends, past and present, even resolving seemingly unrelated issues. This was just a great story all around. I also fell in love with the town of Preston, and wouldn't mind a story about Brooke's brother, Ryan. This was a wonderful holiday read!