Review: Fran Cuthbert Ruins Christmas by J. A. Rock and Lisa Henry

Rating: 2.5🌈

J. A. Rock and Lisa Henry are both excellent writers and their ability to craft believable characters is one of the reasons I automatically grab up any book they co-author.

Unfortunately in Fran Cuthbert Ruins Christmas, it’s one of their believable characters that’s the reason this was so close to being a DNF for me. I barely scraped by, hoping for some improvement in his personality. A false hope as it turned out.

The truth lies in the title. Fran Cuthbert not only ruin’s Christmas but this story. While the other mc is real, vulnerable, and engaging, Fran is that person you can’t trust or the character that begs the question why on earth would either writer craft someone like him to begin with as a main romantic lead.

He’s an inveterate lier, a outright thief of Christmas gifts, incapable of taking responsibility for any kind of irresponsible hurtful behavior on his part, passiveness in a manner that ends up being a weapon to hurt others, and a sense of humor that actually inflicts damage on someone he says he cares about. His only saving grace is his love for his twins girls that he’s so busy lying to.

Honestly. The authors thought Fran was someone we as readers should connect with? Find somehow awkwardly funny and adorable? Because he’s a toxic hot mess with a box load of red flags waving above him.

One of the worst things here? When his long time love (who he wronged), opens up and makes an extremely vulnerable confession to Fran, something that involves a sexual encounter that resulted in an accidental harm, what happens? Fran makes fun of him, makes Cass feel bad about himself and the encounter. By then I was done.

So am I recommending this? No. Only to those fans of these authors and I’m sure you have this on your TBR list already. For the rest of you, I’ll let you make the best choice.

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Unless it’s noted, all books reviewed have been purchased by the reviewer

By Scattered Thoughts

At over 50, I am ruled by my terriers, my gardens, and my projects. A knack for grubbing about in the woods, making mud pies, and tending to the injured worms, bugs, and occasional bird and turtle growing up eventually led me to working for the Parks. I was a park Naturalist for over 20 years, and observing Nature and her cycles still occupy my hours. From the arrival of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds in the Spring to the first call of the Snow Geese heading south in the Fall, I am entranced by the seasons. For more about me see my bio on my blog.

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