If you’re someone who pays close attention to the blog calendar and/or Sunday Editions, you might be scratching your head and thinking, “I thought Jaycee Weaver was up today.” Well, fear not, you’re not wrong! But Jaycee needed someone to step in for her, and I was happy to do that to take this off her plate so she was free to focus.
And happily, Jaycee has one of my favorite Christmas romances, so I knew just what to talk about for her!
Growing up in Northern New Mexico, one of my favorite memories is of the luminarias decorating driveways, sidewalks, and the outlines of adobe houses. (And other houses, but there’s something about luminarias on adobe that is stunning.) (Sadly, I wasn’t going to pay $12 for a stock photo to show you all how gorgeous they are.)
What is a luminaria? (Sometimes they’re called farolitos.) It’s a brown paper bag with sand in the bottom and then, nestled in that sand, a candle. And when they’re run in lines and lit at night they are magical.
So when I first saw Jaycee Weaver’s book Love, Laughter, and Luminarias I knew I had to read it, if only because it was the first time I’d seen someone mention luminarias in a book. (Or, to be fair, mention them at all since leaving New Mexico. Maybe they exist outside the southwest US, but they surely aren’t in northern Virginia.)
This was the first ever book I read by Jaycee, and oh what a book. It has everything. Albuquerque (or as I grew up calling it, the big city). A geeky heroine. A book-loving best friend who’s also secretly in love with geek girl. Banter. So much geeky and flirty and fun banter. And finally, all the swoony feels.
Here’s the blurb:
He has his books. She has her fandoms. They’ve always had their friendship. Could Christmas projects, snowball fights, and local traditions spark feelings neither knew were there?
Surprisingly successful action-suspense author Garrett Wilson is struggling to write a summer novel in December. That is, until he witnesses his best friend, Nina, chase down a shoplifter and realizes that maybe his tough, attractive heroine might not be based solely in fiction.
Geeky-chic Nina Trujillo finds herself contemplating a God she’s never believed in after her brush with danger taking down a thief. That one decision could change the whole course of her life, and quite possibly, her feelings for the one guy she’s never considered more than a friend.
When Nina dives head-first into a series of Christmas projects and ideas for new traditions, she drags Garrett along for the ride. Will her newfound courage and all the extra time together bring their feelings out into the open, or will Nina escape back into the comfort of her fandoms and lose him forever?
I had so much fun in the pages of this story–and not just because it assuaged that subtle sense of homesickness for New Mexico that follows me everywhere, despite it not having been my actual home for more than *cough* a lot *cough* of years.
What I love even more? It got me hooked on Jaycee’s books. And every time I open one of her stories, I find myself back home. She shares her love of place so thoroughly that I don’t think you can read her books and not want to visit.
Do you have any Christmas traditions that are a little unusual? I’d love to know what they are! Or, have you ever seen (or set up) luminarias? Or what’s your favorite book by Jaycee?
Talk to me in the comments – and I’ll choose a lucky winner to get an ebook copy of Love, Laughter, and Luminarias (gifted from Amazon.com, so I think that limits it to US residents) on Saturday.