We are now halfway through the month of December, and this lover of holiday romance novels has not read any, so far. This must change, but the question is, how?
Normally, by this time of year, my TBR shelf will be groaning with holiday themed romance novels, often going through them at an amazing rate. This time of year, as for the year as a whole, the library system is my friend. I can search for holiday romances both old and new, reserve them with a click of my mouse, and go grab them at the front desk, and let us not forget that there are endless venues to find holiday romance e-books, for little to no cost. Normally, this would be the time for me to dive fully into the whole holiday thing, in my reading as with everything else, but, so far, with reading, nothing. Nada. Zilch. Zippo. Nix. Nil. You get the picture.
Speaking of pictures, my holiday romance movie viewing is also at zero for the year. In an ideal world, there would be repeated viewings of The Holiday, Love Actually, About a Boy, and their spiritual siblings, because, really, they are all love stories at their core. Nothing beats reading about love in the time of holiday magic, but, this year, so-called “real life” has demanded a bunch of my attention (including contracting a book of my and my co-writer’s own, which is not a holiday romance, alas) I never got into the holiday reading thing, and now, I am feeling the lack.
There are still ten days left before my winter holiday, Christmas, and it is entirely possible that I will go on a holiday romance reading binge over the tucked-away week between Christmas and New Year’s, so this is where I turn to the Buried Under Romance family for some input.
Last year, I gorged, and I would love to get back there again. Here are a few of the holiday romances that make me as happy as minty hot chocolate with too many marshmallows, and fresh gingerbread cookies:
My First Noel, Danelle Harmon – 18th century historical romance with a light inspirational flavor.
Landline, by Rainbow Rowell – This may show up under general fiction, but it’s contemporary romance with a time travel twist, within the lifetime of a couple in crisis. A jilted heroine, a mysterious stranger, the power of love, and the spirit of Christmas, plus all the full immersion historical detail of the author’s beloved DeMonteforte series.
Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares, by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan – YA contemporary romance that gives both sides of two strangers whose lives collide in a bookstore, thanks to a red notebook with an invitation too good to ignore. Besides the infectous joy of the season, the underground Hassidic rave is worth the price of admission alone. Also, there’s a sequel.
A Secret Christmas, by Lauren Royal- What’s a Christmas-loving heroine to do, when Christmas is outlawed and the government seizes her family home? If the answer is anything other than “celebrate it anyway, and fall in love in the process,” then that answer is wrong. A delightful confection, part of the author’s Chase family series, but also accessible as a standalone.
Though I could go on about favorite holiday romances all day (I seriously mean that) I’m going to have to stop myself here. Okay, one more. Miracle on Ladies’ Mile, by Joanna Shupe speaks to my inner eight year old who thought window dresser was one of the most glamorous jobs in the world.
There’s also a whole long list of older reads, like the Shillouette Regency Christmas romance anthologies that were a staple in the genre for years. Also western historical anthologies, and even the odd gathering of medieval or paranormal romances. Though my winter holiday is Christmas, I would love to read stories where the holiday is Hannukah, Solstice, Yule, Kwanzaa, or even New Year’s. Help me, Buried Under Romance. You’re my only hope.
So, dear readers, I turn it now over to you. What are your favorite holiday romances? Do you see enough holiday romances centered around your holiday? Do you have favorites you return to year after year? Which author would you love to see a holiday romance from, but haven’t seen yet? Pull up a chair in the comment section and tell us all about it. There’s room for everybody at this table.