Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Jesse Connor lost everything at Christmas two years ago: his home, his career, and his future husband. But it wasn’t to death—it was to deceit. The man he had planned to propose to on Christmas Eve, the financial guru who managed all their savings and was a Wall Street whiz, was arrested for embezzling millions of dollars. Before he left, though, he stole all of Jesse’s money as well as all his award winning photographs. It’s taken Jesse two years to even try to agree to attempt a comeback, and if it wasn’t for the persistence of his agent, he’d never have taken a photo gig in the wilds of Vermont in December.
There he meets Gabriel McLury, a young man who loves his life, including his mom, his town, his arts & crafts, his job as a teacher, and the kids who make his life complete every single day. At first, Jesse is physically attracted to Gabriel, but still reluctant to try to find enough Christmas spirit to fulfill his photo contract with the small town of Eden Vale. But Gabriel shows him a new perspective, and over the course of the month of Jesse’s photo journal of the town’s Christmas preparations, Jesse’s frozen heart starts to thaw, and an inkling of the Christmas spirit, he once thought lost for good, returns tenfold.
This is a heartwarming story—romantic, sweet, and comforting with endearing characters and the perfect Christmas story setting. Being witness to Jesse’s evolving Christmas spirit will put a smile on the face of everyone, including Ebenezer himself. A standalone, this book can be read any time of the year, but anyone with a holiday wish list should be sure to add it at the top.
Cover art by Meredith Russell depicts two young men against a brown-tinted background. To be honest, they may look like the characters, but the story itself is all about color, especially the cerulean blue of Gabriel’s eyes, so it’s not a cover that truly reflects the goodness within the pages.
ebook, Second edition, rewritten, new cover art
Published December 22nd 2013 by Love Lane Books (first published December 23rd 2011)