Merry Christmas! There’s only three more sleeps until Christmas morning dawns. If you’re like me, you’ll have a to-do list for this week that’s too long and you’ll be wondering how you can get everything done by Christmas Eve. My list also includes catching up on spring cleaning that didn’t get done during spring for various reasons. Now summer has arrived in Australia, it’s those jobs like cleaning the pantry cupboard that are still awaiting my attention.
I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read our Inspy Romance posts during what can be one of the busiest weeks of the year. Today I thought I’d talk about Christmas romance books that I’ve read (or reread) this year.
Shannon Taylor Vannatter shared a helpful post on November 27 that provided a list of Inspy Christmas Reads. I’ve reread books on Shannon’s list that I won’t be including in today’s post. I’m sharing a few books that are a mix of new releases in 2021 and older titles I’ve reread this year.
The first three books: Nowhere for Christmas, A (kinda) Country Christmas, and Poles Apart are the books that Elizabeth, Valerie, and I chose to talk about in our latest StoryChats @ InspyRomance podcast/YouTube Christmas Episode #52 that aired on December 17. If you like reading Christmas romance books and haven’t had a chance to listen, go check it out. I’ll be listening to episodes from a number of podcasts while I catch up on my spring cleaning, lol.
Two virtual strangers, one teen, and the worst rental car in the history of mankind…
Let the road trip begin.
Avery Weston is a journalist and mom to teenager Eli. Gavin Eastly is an enigmatic photographer.
A botched schedule lands them all in a rental car for Christmas. With everything that goes wrong, it’ll take a miracle to get them anywhere. But miracles come in surprising packages – like a bait shop owner moonlighting as a mechanic and a deputy whose family can’t agree on how to remove a skunk’s stink.
It’s the perfect recipe for romance.
Join Avery, Eli, and Gavin as they learn that reaching the destination doesn’t mean the journey’s over. God has so much more in store for them.
After all—anything can happen on the road to Nowhere.
Narelle’s Thoughts: This book is hilarious and I re-read it quickly because I couldn’t put it down! Everything that can go wrong will go wrong in this story. If you’re looking for a fun Christmas rom com novella with a lovely faith message, this is a great one to read.
Celebrate the holidays with this sweet contemporary inspirational romance novella (with a splash of humor!) about a woman who is surrounded by Christmas and a man who could – eh- do without it.
Sadie Jenkins lives and breathes Christmas every, single day of the year. Owner of Bethlehem’s Boutique in the tourist mountain town of Gatlinburg, TN, she has no room for the bad boys of her past and devotes her whole life to the struggling boutique and her teenage daughter, Maribelle. She’s perfectly happy with her country-living life until he walks into her store.
Nate Myers travels the globe for his job and has the bank account to prove his success. The former “bad” boy is in town for a short visit with his sister and is determined to not get caught up in all the Christmas hype. But then he falls for the beautiful shopkeeper—quite literally.
Will these two (sorta) opposites be able to find a happily-ever-after together?
Narelle’s Thoughts: This is another fun Christmas rom com novella with a relevant faith message that will have you LOL all the way. The meet cute in the Christmas store is hilarious, and the humor in the story is like a snowball that rolls down the hill and keeps getting bigger and better.
Writer’s block and a looming Christmas novel deadline have romance novelist, Sarah Jones, heading for the other side of the world on a whim.
Niklas Toivonen offers cosy Lapland accommodation, but when his aging father falls ill, Niklas is called upon to step into his father’s work clothes to make children happy. Red is quite his color.
Fresh off the airplane, a visit to Santa sets Sarah’s muse into overdrive. The man in red is not only entertaining, he’s young—with gorgeous blue eyes. Much like her new landlord’s, she discovers. Santa and Niklas quickly become objects of research—for her novel, and her curiosity.
Though she’s written countless happily-ever-afters, Sarah doubts she’ll ever enjoy her own. Niklas must find a way to show her how to leave the pain of her past behind, so she can find love and faith once more.
Narelle’s Thoughts: The quintessential Christmas romance novella set in Lapland, the home of Father Christmas. Our dear friend Marion will live on in our memories through her delightful books, and this one successfully combines the legend of Santa with the Christmas story of Jesus.
Can a return home find the answers they are both searching for?
Interior Design student Ellie Matthews has escaped to New York City, leaving behind her small town of Heritage, and most importantly, the boy who almost derailed her dreams, Kade Paxton. Sure, she’s excited to return home for Christmas, but she’s fixed her gaze on her future. Even when her sister, Olivia begs her to plan the annual Heritage Christmas Ball. And then her partner in planning shows up…
Wanna-be painter, current mechanic Kade Paxton can’t believe the girl who walked out of his life is back…and that in order to keep his promise to his aunt, he’ll have to actually work with her. The last thing he’s going to do let Ellie in to break his heart all over again. But, with the opportunity to showcase his paintings, this might be his one chance to grab ahold of his dreams…But working together stirs up old dreams, and soon they find themselves caught up in the holiday magic…but what happens when the ball is over? Is there a future beyond the small town and snowflakes?
It’ll take some miracles under a Midnight Clear to find the answer. Return to Heritage one more time with this heartwarming Christmas novella.
Narelle’s Thoughts: This one is a treat for fans of the Restoring Heritage series. A charming small town high school sweethearts reunion romance story. NYC vs. small town Michigan, who will win? A fun, short romance novella with cameo appearances of beloved characters and Otis the hippo!
Lauren Richmond isn’t a fan of Christmas.
Which is why she rarely makes the trip home to the Midwest for the holidays. After all, she has plenty to keep her busy—namely, her duties as a set decorator on a TV sitcom.
But this December, Lauren‘s brother and his wife are expecting a baby, so her brother arranges a ride home for her with his good friend, Will.
Unfortunately for Lauren, she’s been trying to forget college baseball coach and childhood crush Will Sinclair for more than ten years.
Now, thanks to her fear of flying, she’s stuck in a car with him from California to Illinois.
She’s circumspect and organized. He’s flirty and spontaneous.
She’s convinced that people don’t change. He’s trying to prove to her (and himself) that he has.
On this cross-country road trip, they’ll both discover that history doesn’t exactly repeat itself. . . but like any good Christmas carol, it does have a second verse.
Narelle’s Thoughts: Another fun road trip Christmas romance story for fans of the ‘I-hate-you’ and ‘brother’s best friend’ romance tropes. The characters are adorable and hilarious. Their road trip detours on their journey home for Christmas from California to Illinois are super fun to read.