Brought to you by OBS reviewer Andra
Briar Creek’s quaint shop windows, cozy homes nestled in snow and neighborly residents are what Christmas dreams are made of–for everyone except Grace Madison. She left her hometown years ago to pursue a writing career. But when her father’s death leaves his bookstore empty, Grace must return to face why she fled Vermont in the first place: Luke Hastings, who still heats her up like a shot of smoky whiskey on a cold winter’s night.
Grace is back, and Luke is worried. How much has she changed as a bestselling author in the big city? What memories will she stir up? And was the choice he made five years ago the biggest mistake of his life?
Now, with their past, present, and future rocking around the Christmas tree, it’s time for Grace and Luke to face the music . . . and the mistletoe.
A very heart felt, well told story. Just what this reader enjoys for a tale based around the holiday season. This is the first in the Briar Creek Series and I must say that it is a very fine beginning of a new series. I found the introduction of the cast of characters sufficient and in enough depth to keep me interested in learning more about their lives.
The whole Madison clan are reeling from the loss of the patriarch of the family….Grace’s dad (Ray Madison) earlier in the year. Anna and Jane are Grace’s sisters and were left to console their mother (Kathleen) and deal with all the life events associated with the death of their father while Grace came for the funeral and then returned to her home in New York (all within a 36 hour span I might add). Grace finally agrees to come home for one week at Christmas. On route to the home she grew up in, as she enters Briar Creek, Grace loses control of the rental car on an icy patch. Who happens along to rescue her….her ex – Luke Hastings. Now this where life (aka – the Luke and Grace relationship) gets complicated…however, I shall gloss over this part so as to let future readers figure all of this out themselves. Grace wanted to be a writer when she grew up so remaining in Briar Creek was not on her radar. Luke has always wanted to stay in Briar Creek…he saw his future all mapped out in this quaint little town. Even though Grace and Luke went out for YEARS….when it was time to go away to college and spread their wings…yup…you guessed it….their relationship did not last.
Fast forward a few years and Grace is a successful writer (that is until her latest book is released) living in New York with Derek, her fiancée. We learn that all is not as we think as she returns to Briar Creek. Her relationship with Derek is over and her latest book is NOT a best seller. Essentially, Grace is at loose ends and more shocking news is to hit her once she has reconnected with her mother and sisters.
I really enjoyed the sparring attitude initially exuded when Grace and Luke meet up again. Awkward but with the old time chemistry still very much evident. You just know something will happen??? Actually, there are many twists and turns and big time misunderstandings…..even to the point of me thinking …alright already you two, figure it out! COMMUNICATE. But this is of course what makes the story entertaining.
I love the other two sisters. They have interesting story lines and it is easy to see that this series will have three books (one for each sister). The tension between Anna and Mark…I anticipate that is what the next book will be all about and I cannot wait to read it.
I quite enjoyed the small town atmosphere as well as the comradery and of course the competitiveness regarding the Christmas decorating contest. It was interesting to see how the girls were able to finally engage their mother in life again.
At times both Grace and Luke were frustrating in their interactions together but all in all, a great start to my Christmas reading this season. If you would like to read a feel good romantic Christmas tale….give this one a read.