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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on April 27, 2000
In Christine Cameron's A Highland Christmas, we meet Scottish lassCassandra McIntyre, who is forced to marry English Baron Drake against her wishes - and his as well. All Drake wants is to get his hands on his family home, which has been bestowed upon his brother Cedric, marry Cassandra because he must, and then abandon her as soon as he is able to. When Cassandra overhears this, she is understandably upset. Unfortunately, this was one of the extremely rare occasions when anything Cassandra does makes any sense.
To call Cassandra spirited would be a mistake - shrewish and irritating would be more like it. She slaps Drake more than once, yells and screams at him every chance she gets, disobeys him left and right, fights off clans in order to prove herself, and generally behaves like a two-year-old - she wants what she wants when she wants it. Not even her "gift" of receiving other people's feelings through touch did anything but make the scene of their wedding night thoroughly confusing. Drake was little better - they get close, he rejects her; they kiss, he rejects her; they make love, he rejects her.... A grade of D-.
Jill Henry's Sara's Gift was a sweet, heartwarming story about love healing old wounds. Sara Mercer is a widow on her way to a job and, hopefully, a new life. She can't help herself, however, and makes a stop in Moose Creek to see the child she gave up for adoption four years earlier. Her stop is lengthened by a heavy snowstorm and, with the train passengers taking every available hotel room in town, she ends up staying in the same house as Mary, her daughter, and Mary's adoptive father, Sheriff Gabe Chapman.
The attraction between Sara and Gabe is palpable from the moment he helps her off the stranded train, and so is Sara's growing guilt at knowing she is deceiving both Gabe and his sister, who quickly enfold the lonely Sara into their family routine.
My main problem with the story is that we are told that neither Sara nor Gabe has ever loved like they do each other. Considering they were both married before and considering how little they really knew each other, this seemed a little too convenient and unrealistic, and so did Gabe's acceptance of the truth of Sara's identity. I don't see why Gabe and Sara couldn't have loved their spouses and also found joy and love with each other. Mary was a little too grown-up for a four-year old, but all in all, this was a reasonably enjoyable story. A grade of C+.
Tracy Sumner's When All Through the Night was a wonderful finish to this anthology. When we meet Katherine Peters, she is absolutely through with Tanner Barkley. The cad had apparently been using her for a big undercover story for the newspaper, and when the story appeared, Katherine was left beyond humiliation at discovering that her first and only lover had been merely using her. Of course, this is not really how things really happened....
These were two likable people. Katherine is determined not to have her heart stomped on again, but her feelings toward Tanner are justified, considering that she doesn't know all the details. Tanner's efforts to gain back the love of his life are endearing and I found myself rooting for him. A grade of B, and I understand that this is the sequel to Ms. Sumner's Carolina Rose, which I definitely intend to read.
Christmas Kisses was worth reading for Tracey Sumner's story. Her story, along with Jill Henry's, went a long way toward removing the bad taste left in my mouth after reading Christine Cameron's contribution. Spending quality time with Sumner's characters will surely warm the reader and bring a little Christmas spirit.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on November 4, 1999
This charming little novella collection combines romance with the joy of the holiday season.
English Baron Drake Bancroft is angry when King George gives him Sedgewick Castle and the Lady Cassandra MacIntyre and allows his brother to keep the family home in England. Scotland is a godforsaken place to spend Christmas, but as he will learn in Christine Cameron's A HIGHLAND CHRISTMAS, sometimes a gift we don't want can be the real prize. His adjustment to Scotland and the love he develops for Cassandra heal old wounds and bring great joy to them both.
Conditions had forced Sara to give up her child for adoption years ago. Now fate will bring her west and straight to the man who is not her daughter's father, Gabe Chapman. SARA'S GIFT is a beautiful and touching story about forgiveness, redemption and second chances. The gist of love and family presented by Jill Henry exemplifies the season.
In Tracy Sumner's WHEN ALL THROUGH THE NIGHT, newspaper reporter Tanner Barkley had ruined Katerine Peter's life with one stroke of his pen. Now a year and a half later they find themselves in the same small South Carolina town fighting like two spitting cats. A little matchmaking from old friends, some new problems and a searing passion that never died beings them back together in a sexy tale filled with great verbal repartee.
Lighten your day after shopping and cooking with CHRISTMAS KISSES. Sensual.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 14, 1999
Each story in this anthology is wonderful and so full of Christmas love and cheer! I orginally bought the story to read Tracy Sumner's sequel to my favorite historical romance of 1999--Carolina Rose. But, I got two other wonderful stories, too.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 27, 1999
Being an avid reader of Scottish romances, I picked up Christmas Kisses in the hopes of finding a good Scottish Christmas story. Christine Cameron delivers an incredible mix of action and sensuality--I can't wait to read more by this author!
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 9, 2000
I enjoyed "Highland Christmas" - the story moves along quickly with a lot happening over the 12 days of Christmas for these newlyweds. I thought Cassandra's gift was intriguing - her insight kept her from getting too miffed at her thick-skulled bridegroom!
"Sara's Gift" was my favorite! I really felt what both the heroine and hero were experiencing. I cannot imagine giving up my child after one week of bonding, but was proud of how the author (Jill Henry) pulled off the ending!
"When All Through the Night" was slow, with only a steamy scene on a desk to it's merit - brings a whole new meaning to office work...
Enjoy! I've read and re-read all or parts of each story.
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