Quite possibly one of the most entertaining books I've ever read! This book is chopped full of the Christmas spirit in all ways possible .. crazy family, too many decorations, Ralphie & his BB gun, two lost souls who find each other, a squirrel in a sweater, and MORE!
The cover for this book popped out at me when I saw it on my GoodReads recommendations. I LOVE Christmas (pretty sure I was Mrs. Claus in a past life) but I'm not into Christmas love stories, I hate those damn Lifetime movies! My family is all about Christmas ... I'm sure you can see our house from the space station, we overdo it on presents every year, we fight, we cry, we make up, watch A Christmas Story all day, sing carols, and enjoy our time together. Needless to say, there was something about this book that intrigued me so I put on my Santa hat and dove right in!
We first meet Noel as she's sitting at the airport bar waiting for her flight back home. She's on the phone with her very overbearing yet loving mother. She's fearing her trip home after losing her job and running out on her boyfriend as he tried to propose. After yet another inappropriate comment from her mother, Noel raises her hands in the air, forgetting her beer is in one hand, and showers an unsuspecting gentlemen with her beer. Noel quickly tries to help him out with some crumpled up napkins but the stranger goes off in a huff. Bellying back up to the bar Noel goes to order another drink when a man sits down next to her and tells the bartender to order him and her whatever she was drinking. The man, Sam, is none other than the Marine she spilled her beer on. After chatting at the bar over a few beers they both realize they are both from Ohio and on the same flight home. The heat between them is almost instant and they both don't want their little encounter to end. Noel finds herself asking Sam to come with her for the holidays to pose as her boyfriend.
This comical story continues with Noel's "ancle" (her uncle who is now her aunt), her father who channel's Clark Griswold, her mother who is basically Martha Stewart on crack, and her asshat brother. While this story is predictable there's a twist in it that I honestly didn't see coming but really made the story all that more heartwarming. There are a lot of characters in this book but they do not take away from our main characters, Noel and Sam. There's just enough mystery and sadness about Sam that keeps him hotter than fresh Christmas cookies out of the oven. Noel is a girl after my own heart, I identified with her so much (thankfully my Mom is supporting and loving but not like hers) and just a real sweet person looking for someone to make her believe in herself and life again. It was a true joy watching these characters develop and tell the tale.
Do yourself a favor and download this book! You won't regret it! Especially if you're a Christmas-loving-ho-ho-ho-ing nut like myself!
As I said above, I truly loved this story! I'm hoping it comes out on paperback so I can add it to my library. I cannot wait to check out more books by Tara!