TITLE: No Mistletoe Required
AUTHOR: Jaenette Murray
PUBLISHER: Carina Press
RELEASED: Nov. 3, 2013
Dan Beckins isn't sure how he let his best friend con him into volunteering to build Santa's Winter Wonderland at the local hospital. He's got no problems with charity work, but anything Christmas-related is off-limits ever since he lost his parents on Christmas Day years ago. The only bright spot is working with smoking-hot Anna Smith.
Anna Smith loves Christmas and volunteering at the hospital is one of her yearly highlights. She had leukemia as a teen and then a breast cancer scare in her mid-twenties, and is now operating under a self-imposed rule that she can't have a relationship until the doctors give her a clean bill of health.
A little fling might be permissible, though, and sexy lawyer-turned-carpenter Dan seems like the perfect candidate. But when chemistry flares and the two start forming a real connection, will Anna run away before like turns to love?
I have to admit that I definitely judged this book by its cover. Can you resist this hottie on the cover? I love his smile and his longer hair. Cute! And he wasn't a disappointment in the story either. Sweet Dan Beckins is "forced" to help build Santa's Workshop at the children's hospital, even though he hates the season. There, he meets Anna, a cancer survivor who turns out to be an advantage to working there. Ana's character is a formidable one. She goes for what she wants and guess who that is. Yep! But Anna has a rule not to get involved with someone that could be a long-time prospective boyfriend, since cancer is in her past. She doesn't want to let anyone down, least of all her. So, when their "fling" turns into a possible future, Ana scares away. Dan, on the other hand, is happy to explore where their connection could lead.
I give this book 3 stars, because it was too fast and I wanted more. That is a good thing, I guess, and since I went in knowing it was a novella, I should've expected it. Still, I would've liked to have seen a more emotional connection between the two, even though the sexual connection rocked. Additionally, this has been the third "Christmas romance" I've picked up, and so far they all have the same male conflict - parents died during the Christmas season and they can't seem to get over it without the heroine's help. Overall, I would recommend reading it. It's fast, sweet, and hot.
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