Lori Wilde has been on my Author TBR pile for ages and, oh, I've been missing out! I'll Be Home for Christmas was lovely. Simply lovely. A beautiful romance, characters you can't help but love and root for, a spirited town full of heart and warmth. I laughed, I smiled, I finished the book reading blurry words from all the feels and tears. Everything a Christmas romance should be.
Alright, so the quick of it is that Gabi needs to think some things through--law school it turns out isn't for her-- and on a whim she switches lives with an internet friend who's also found herself in need of a holiday escape. They'll switch homes, lives, everything...for three weeks. Just until Christmas. She's always dreamed of spending Christmas in a small town that celebrates in style and Twilight has it in spades. Including a hunky Christmas tree farmer who's ready to help spice up her holiday adventure even more.
"You're my new favorite person."Joe and Gabi. I loved both of them. They've had such different lives--his family is warm, gregarious and loves to celebrate everything and her family...doesn't even realize she's left town--but they complimented each other well. I loved that Gabi was a natural listener and cared for others. And that Joe dropped everything to run his grandfather's tree farm when he fell ill. That he loved his family fiercely and was a was a wonderful dad.
"You. Don't sound so surprised. You're interesting."
"I'm just..." She shrugged. "I never thought of myself as a particularly interesting person."
"Then you need to change your way of thinking."
They just fell right in with each other after a rather funny first meet and it was heartwarming and a little magical too as they got to know each other. There was a lot of chemistry and tension but just a little bit of actual sheet time (nothing too detailed).
He lowered his head, pressed his mouth to her ear. "Sweetheart, I'm gonna make you squirm."I loved them getting to know each other as she settled into town. The spark and feelings of more that quickly followed. It didn't feel rushed or cheesy even though it was all happening at warp speed. It just felt perfect.
"Oh my," she whispered.
And then there was Twilight. I love Twilight! This is my dream town. No doubt. They embrace everything to do with the holidays and celebrating life and each other. They're warm, friendly, caring. They have good hearts and make you feel like your home. I loved getting to spend time with them and seeing Gabi come alive as she explored the town and their holiday traditions.
"Anything else?" His hot gaze roved over her body.
Gabi ran a finger around her collar. "That's it. Well, maybe I'll share my Oreos with you."
"Are Oreos a euphemism for--"
"No. Tree. Decorations. Cookies. That's it. Take it or leave it."
Joe studied her. Long and hard and serious. She couldn't recall anyone looking at her in quiet that same way before. As if she was a mystery he could never solve. It made her feel exotic and powerful. Two qualities she rarely associated with herself.
"I'll take it."
I'll Be Home for Christmas was like getting a warm hug from your grandmom who smells like fresh baked Christmas cookies. Utterly comforting and perfect. Wilde stole my heart. No question. I can't wait to get back to the earlier books in the series.
...And who happens to be staying at his sister's place over the holidays, while Joe's sister is away. But Joe isn't quite sure he wants to be a living Christmas present to runaway law student Gabi Preston.
Joe thinks the sassy sweetheart he nicknames "Trouble" won't inconvenience anything but his healthy sex drive. But when he discovers the reasons Gabi escaped from her life, he aches to give her everything she's never had. As the magic of the season draws them together, the gift of love is the only one worth giving…
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