A Hallmark Kind of Sweet
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Holiday Romance
Book Length (Est.): 557 Pages
Christmas Kisses is a collection from five bestselling and award-winning authors. Set in the snowy town of Echo Ridge in upstate New York, these sweet and fun romances are sure to delight while you sip cocoa by the fire and listen to Christmas carols.
The Candy Counter Heiress by Lucy McConnell, Amazon bestseller
Someday Reese Gates will own The Candy Counter at Kenworth’s; but someday can’t come fast enough when the manager threatens to bring in a national candy provider. Reese secretly takes matters into her own hands hoping to save her parents from additional worry and prove herself capable of running the company. Her deception deepens as she ropes computer guru Andy Edwards into helping her expand the business. Reese wanted to shake things up, but she wasn’t planning on her heart getting caught in the mix by Andy’s stolen kisses. If she can hold it together until after Christmas, then she can reveal her successful online company and her feelings for Andy. Unfortunately for Reese, even the best laid plans can melt like chocolate.
Christmas Makeover by Cami Checketts, Amazon bestseller
Chelsea Jamison has been infatuated with Drew Stirling longer than she’s loved playing basketball, high-top sneakers, and the Knicks. Unfortunately, all Drew sees is the kid who kicked his trash in the high school free throw contest and not the girl whose heart breaks into a fast dribble when he’s near. Drew makes an unexpected visit home to Echo Ridge and their friendship picks up where they left off as they scheme to make a teenaged boy’s Christmas dreams come true. When Chelsea realizes she’s fallen for her best friend, she wonders if there is any hope of a relationship with Drew or if she’s stuck in buddy-status for life.
Hope for Christmas by Rachelle J. Christensen, Amazon bestseller
Anika Fletcher hates Christmas–its promises of good tidings and hope for the future are as tinseled as the ornaments on Kenworth’s Hope Tree. Despite her feelings, Anika wants to maintain her daughter’s faith in the magic of the season and gladly accepts a second job working with the handsome Carlos Rodriguez to restore Kenworth’s old fashioned soda fountain. Carlos is no stranger to hard times and slowly shares his life of light and joy with Anika as they work together. Just as her fragile soul begins to feel hope again, an ill-timed act of charity changes everything. Anika isn’t sure who she can trust or if hope is worth nurturing–especially at Christmas when it’s easy to enjoy a kiss and believe love can last longer than the season.
Soda Fountain Christmas by Connie E. Sokol, Amazon bestseller
Keira Kenworth has one focus this holiday season: save her father’s old-time department store from bankruptcy. She is not focused on Tayton Wells, the tall, dark, and genius marketing guru from downtown New York, hired to make it happen. He is as doubtful that her nostalgic connect-the-town ideas will succeed as she is about his numbers-first plan. However, it’s not just their different approaches that cause sparks to fly. Working together on a fast deadline to save the store before Christmas, the unspoken connection between them grows. But will the tough decisions they face drive them back to their separate worlds, or will they lead to the beginning of love?
One Winter Night by Heather Tullis, Amazon bestselling author
Jonah Owens thought moving to Echo Ridge to open his art gallery would solve all of his problems. The need to sell his grandma’s house adds an unexpected complication. It would be easier if his neighbor didn’t have all those farm animals.
Kaya Feidler’s family has owned their land for nearly a hundred years–long before the neighbors were there. There’s no way she’s giving up the animal therapy business she’s been struggling to make profitable. She gets a temp job helping Jonah in the gallery. Spending time together is a recipe for romance, but can they overcome their own hangups to be more than friends?
*I received an ARC of this book free from Jelly Bean Press in exchange for an honest review*
The Candy Counter Heiress:
Reese’s job is chocolate, it’s the family business, but she wants to make her mark on the company and has her own idea on how. She’s all business and doesn’t think a man like Andy would ever be interested in her, but thanks to her grandmother she might have more signs than she’d expected. And her chocolate thief might want to steal more than a sampling of her morning batch of chocolate.
“Why not stake your claim?” Grandma shimmied her shoulders. “You two would make beautiful babies.”
Andy wants Reese in his life, but he had to wait until she was ready for him and he believes he’s finally starting to get through. For she’s his heiress and he’d do anything for her…including helping her with her secret business idea. Too bad he didn’t realize it was a secret.
“You’re a good girl, Reese. Would you consider my son? Not for his ungrateful behavior, but for my sake?”
Sometimes even the best intentions can cause people to get hurt. Thanks to the meddling of a few family members though these two will realize they’re meant for each other.
Chelsea doesn’t enjoy fashion at all, and as the PE teacher she can enjoy all the yoga pants and T-shirts she wants, but her best friend tries at every opportunity to dress her up. She’d never even considered the idea until Drew showed back up in town. He was her childhood best friend and she’d had a crush on him for forever. But suddenly he isn’t the only one vying for her attention.
“Hook up? Be my girlfriend? Love me forever? What’s the proper terminology?”
Drew didn’t want to come back to town, but when he ran into his once best friend, Chelsea, it was suddenly the only place he wanted to be. He’d known she was the one, but he needed to be worthy of her before he ever decided to take their friendship further. Only problem now was that he had competition, and if that didn’t make it bad the fact that he was a nice guy only made it worse.
Drew gave her a sad smile. “Well, have fun. Remember who you are and who you’d rather be dating.” He mouthed, Me, then he opened her door and ushered her inside.
When past insecurities can finally be laid to rest these two make such a sweet couple. The best friends who fell in love. It may sound typical, but that doesn’t make it any less sweet.
Hope for Christmas:
Anika is a single mother just trying to make ends meet. She works hard, even though her boss is the equivalent to the Grinch. She works extra hours helping restore the Soda Fountain with Carlos to earn extra money in hopes of having enough for the one thing her daughter truly wants for Christmas. And she is one of the sweetest people to work at Kenworth’s.
Carlos is a carpenter and volunteer fireman. It’s his carpentry skills that caused his path to cross with Anika’s and he couldn’t be happier. He’d do anything to make her happy and to bring a little joy into her life…even if those efforts completely backfire and cause more hurt than he ever would have wanted. Carlos’ love of her daughter and the way he always includes her in everything is wonderful.
“Hello, I’m here to pick up two beautiful ladies,” Carlos said and then he lowered his voice to a stage-whisper, “They didn’t tell me that you would be this pretty though.”
They’re a sweet couple and the three of them make a beautiful family that was simply meant to be.
Soda Fountain Christmas:
Keira’s father owns Kenworth’s, but with his mental abilities deteriorating and a woman who seems to hate everyone and everything running the store, she is worried about what the future holds for the store. With a new man there in charge of promotions and trying to get the store in the black by the end of the year, she feels she’s lost any say so in what happens, but that doesn’t stop her from trying to be heard.
“I meant, what do you want me to call you?”
Awkward pause. “Tayton is fine.” Another pause. “Almighty Zeus for the big moments, of course.”
Tayton had planned on doing the job the way he always had, analysis and implementation, but what he didn’t plan on was the fierce Keira with all of her ideas. Although, he quickly learns how to combine his ideas with hers to get the best outcome…it just takes a little holiday spirit to get him there.
“Genius doesn’t need a team. Just a minion. That would be me.”
Keira learns that Tayton isn’t the button down city boy she expected him to be. He has no problem getting his hands dirty and helping wherever needed to get the job done, which only makes him that much more desirable. And Keira’s heart and love of the community has Tayton falling hard. Together they’re unstoppable and the way the work throughout the community is heartwarming.
One Winter Night:
Kaya has a farm where she uses animals to help people. She loves every aspect of it, from the animals to the people she’s able to help. But when she needs a part time job to help take care of the animals it’s Jonah’s grandmother who recommends the perfect solution.
“Wow. Seriously, this is so beautiful. I can’t believe you painted me. It’s fantastic. And very, very flattering. I know I didn’t look half that good.”
Jonah has sunk everything he owns into opening his own art gallery, but when the only employee he has gets injured he’s in need of someone quick. When Kaya shows up for the position he almost doesn’t let her in, because of her and her animals no one wants to buy his grandmother’s house and he’s a little frustrated and angry at her for it even though it isn’t exactly her fault. But he does. And once he gets to know her he realizes that nothing could have prepared him for the joy she brings to his life; from her help at the gallery, to watching her with her animals and clients, to just holding her hand.
They’re both living their dreams, but together they’ll have a reason to enjoy it instead of just living it.
All five stories take place in the same town, all have connections to Kenworth’s, and all take place over the same time period. They are all sweet and heartwarming and remind me of Christmas Hallmark movies. If you want to read a few holiday stories that will make you smile and leave you feeling warm and blessed then this is the anthology for you.
I think my favorite one had to be Christmas Makeover, but they were all very good and I enjoyed them all.
*Clicking on the book cover above will take you to the Amazon purchase page.