This is a collection of four sweet romance Regency Christmas novellas by collected authors. As is usual when I review collections, I’ll give brief impressions and star rating for each of the books before giving an average overall rating for the collection as a whole.
Love And Joy Come To You by Jennifer Moore
Christmas can be a difficult time of year for those who’ve lost loved ones. So when Lord Covington arrives home anticipating a quiet holiday with his mother, he’s not best pleased to discover his home has been invaded by three young children. On meeting their older sister Cassie, however, he discovers they are spending their first Christmas after the loss of their parents, and finds it in himself to open his home to the children - and his heart to Cassie.
This is very sweet, and Covington and Cassie did seem very well-suited to each other. Both thinking of others’ happiness before their own, they reminded me rather of Jane Bennet and Mr Bingley. Five stars for a charming romance.
A Christmas Courting by Chalon Linton
Keturah has been in love with family friend Christopher her whole life. Hearing that he is spending Christmas in London to court a lady devastates her… but then Christopher seems to be spending all his time at her house!
Keturah is very naive and honestly I had the feeling everyone in the story was laughing behind her back, which was rather cruel considering how hurt she was feeling. Three stars.
Mistletoe Memories by Jen Geigle Johnson
Compromised by an unscrupulous fortune hunter, Lady Alice's reputation is smashed to pieces. Her childhood love Patrick's return from India is months too late.
I felt so sorry for Alice and so angry with Patrick, who acted like a complete judgemental a**. I wanted her to marry someone who didn't care about her past, not have Patrick discover her innocence so he could magnanimously decide she was good enough for him after all.
This one hit too many of my hot trigger buttons. Two stars.
Second-Chance Christmas by Heidi Kimball
Taken by surprise when her lifelong best friends confesses his love and proposes, Frances declined. Now Gerard is back and possibly courting another, Frances must examine her true feelings.
Friends to lovers isn't a favorite trope of mine by any means because so often one party seems to be quilted into the relationship, but this is a really rather good take on it, with Frances just naive and astounded by Gerard's declaration. Enjoyable and well written, I'll give this story five stars.
As a collection overall, what stood out was the extreme youth and naivety of the heroines. Sweet and clean romance shouldn't necessarily mean naivety and I'd have liked to see at least one older heroine finding love here. Though there were two stories here I enjoyed, both the other two hit hot buttons and annoyed me. Overall, I'd give this three stars.
A Christmas Courting is available now.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through NetGalley.