For a single dad and his neighbor, the Christmas competition is on!
Julian Moss wants to give his children a happy Christmas. Since his divorce, Julian has no time for a social life; he’s been doing the tiring work of two parents while his cheating ex-husband dodges his responsibilities. If that isn’t stressful enough, he has to deal with his new—and ridiculously good-looking—neighbor and his noisy dogs. Christmas used to be Julian’s favorite holiday, but lately all he sees is the cost. Then Julian’s young son tells him about a Christmas lights competition with a much-needed prize.
Leo Adams is going to be alone for Christmas…again. All he’s ever wanted is to be accepted by his family, but he knows that will never happen. Deciding to focus on his career as a personal trainer, Leo develops a boot camp program on the beach, but he needs publicity. The lights competition offers Leo a way to get some free press, and if it annoys his snooty neighbor Julian—all the better.
The battle is on, and both Julian and Leo want to win. The stakes are high, the reward is great, and the neighbors are in it to win it. There’s nothing like a little competition to make Christmas at Shelby Beach extra merry and bright.
I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!!
Too much? Sorry …. This one really put me in the Christmas spirit. First, we meet Julian and his two adorable kids, Charlie and Sadie. I don’t need to tell anyone how much I adore a hot single dad and his babies. They’re my favorite!
After his divorce, (and y’all, you will hate the cheating, verbally and emotionally abusive ex-husband, here’s your warning)…. Julian is doing everything he can to just make life easy for their children, who both suffer from emotional issues, like anxiety and aggression. Julian is so patient and easy with them, he loves them more than anything….so seeing them hurt time and again by the ex, hurts him too. Never one to stand up for himself, especially with the ex, I was so glad to see him finally do it….
Now, Leo is house/dog sitting for a close friend who just happens to be Julian’s nextdoor neighbor. They don’t get along at first, but it’s short-lived and kind of entertaining… I hated that it hurt Leo, even a little bit, because he’s been hurt so much, I just didn’t want anymore for him… Leo is charming and gorgeous and generous and sweet… it’s easy to become smitten with him… and he’s good with the kids. As a single parent, you can’t ask for anything better than that.
When the small town of Shelby Beach, holds a Christmas Lights competition, both of the men are intent on winning. Julian, so he can give the kids a good Christmas, and maybe do something fun with them, and Leo, because he’s still trying to make a name for himself in Shelby Beach, and getting the exposure and his name out there could go a long way in his want to start his own business. But, as the competition gets on and the guys call a truce, an unfortunate, tiny little accident has Julian needing Leo’s help, and Leo being all in to help out, and even to merge the competition.
I don’t want to give everything away, but I just adored this story. It’s sweet and light and fun, and I loved these two together. I loved Julian’s family and what they could give Leo, because he so desperately needed the love that his own family failed to give him. I loved how accepting they all were, if even a little nutty, Julian’s family and Leo’s best friends… I loved how the ex- seemed to just go away and we never saw him again… and I loved the little happy for now we get, that could promise so much more for these two in coming books. Which I’m very much hoping for. Overall though, it was just the perfect little Christmas read on this cold and rainy day for me, and I loved it.
FAVORITE LINE: “If Falling in love is insane, I want to be crazy every day of my life.”
4 Pieces of Candy
Skylar M. Cates loves a good romance, especially ones that are steamy and emotionally satisfying. She is quite happy to drink coffee, curl up with a good book, and not move all day. Her bestselling novels feature strong, passionate men. Skylar loves to craft stories where realistic men are challenged with emotional situations. Skylar’s character-driven series will often feature close-knit familes, animals, and loyal friendships being tested.