Historical Christmas Present Mass Market Paperback – Sep 9 2008
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I Will by Lisa Kleypas
When a Georgian bluestocking is propositioned by a rakish noble, she finds the unlikely deal he proposes is the gift of a life time.
5 stars -One of my favorite Kleypas stories. Andrew, Lord Drake, is the drunken dissolute half brother to Logan Scott Because You're Mine. Their father is dying. In order to get back into the will Andrew must prove he has transformed his scandalous ways. So comes about a sham engagement to the morally upright Miss Caroline Hargreaves. Fantastic novella, not surprising that this won a Rita. Great characters, captivating writing, unpredictable plot and a swoon-worthy romance. The same novella has also been published previously in Wish List.
Three French Hens by Lynsay Sands
A twelfth-century scullion gets a chance to play a lady's maid -and win the true love of an impoverished lord.
4 stars -Brinna, a scullery maid, is called upon to help Lady Joan avoid marriage to an poor lord. Brinna masquerades as the other woman. Soon she find herself falling in love with Royce who desperately needs a substantial dower to help his people. Too bad Brinna is the wrong woman -or is she? Very good short story but not humorous like many of Sands other ones. I thought the ending was a far fetched but I guess thats in keeping with the feel good Christmas theme. Also published in Five Gold Rings.
Father Christmas by Leigh Greenwood
Delivering a young widow's baby during the holiday season transforms the heart of a lonely drifter in the nineteenth-century Arizona Territory.
5 stars -Joe Ryan is a wanted man. He shows up at his dead partner's ranch looking for the hidden gold, not only for the riches but to clear his good name. What he finds at the run down place is the man's pregnant widow and her step daughter. While searching for the lute lonely Joe can't help but lend a hand to the desperate woman and child who have captured his heart. Wonderful! Everything you could want in a holiday story including the cutesy little girl. The classic Christmas cliche of a loner finding a home -and a family- for the holidays. Also published in Their First Noel.
Can't go wrong with this anthology, good stories at a great price.
For the price tag and quality of stories...you can't go wrong with this one.
It's tough, but Lisa Kleypas's RITA award winner "I Will" was my favorite. For those that read her pair of books Somewhere I'll Find You and Because You're Mine, you'll recognize the hero. He is Logan Scott's renegade half brother, Andrew, Lord Drake. This is a reformed rake story...my favorite. It has one of the most fun, interesting, imaginative, and sexy love scenes I've ever read...in a short story no less! I loved the heroine Caroline and how she goes about getting her man! I found myself reading portions of this story over and over. Andrew's reformation is sweet, convincing, and heartwarming.
Lynsay Sands, "Three French Horns" was the weakest of the bunch. It's kind of a Cinderella story with a twist ending. I appreciate Sand's humor, but often times her novels lack the depth of feeling that others do. However, only when reading Lynsay Sands have I ever laughed out loud uncontrollably! In this one, Royce, Lord Thurleah is never really developed enough for me to connect with him. Okay book....just not memorable like the other two are.
Leigh Greenwood delivers a special treat with "Father Christmas". If you like this one you have to read "Outsider" by Penelope Williamson. It has the same premise. A drifter comes into the life of a widow and her child and none are ever the same. Although Joe is definitely a bit rough around the edges, the way that he cares for Mary and Sarah had me choked up a few times. This story, out of all of them, seems to best capture the "feeling" of Christmas. A beautiful story of the making of a family.
Buy this book. It's a steal for the price!
Three French Hens - the weakest of the bunch. Tale of mistaken identity and marrying for money and property, and it all comes out in the end. But frankly, I didn't care enough about any of the silly characters and implausible plot twists to care much about the outcome.
New to me was Leigh Greenwood, a man who writes romances, and here in "Pere Noel" ties in a Western theme. A sweet, lovely story about a wrongfully accused man who breaks out of jail to clear his name, and in the process cares for his business partner's very pregnant widow and stepdaughter. Amazing what happens as he becomes part of their lives, rebuilding fences and sheds, speaking nonstop to a little mute girl; and the love among them grows and grows. One of the sweetest stories I've ever read.
This is a keeper.
While apparently at least 2 of the tales were previously published, I had not read them before and so do not mind; I'd feel differently if I'd read them already.
Good seasonal fluff, for those of us who like such.