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Holiday Romances

As anyone who watched television knows, the holiday season is upon us once again, which means that there will be a slew of Christmas themed books lining the shelves of your local CVS.  Having grown up Catholic, I've read my fair share of Christmas romances, but let's face it Christmas is but one holiday at the end of the year.  There's Thanksgiving, which while not my favorite holiday (try sharing your birthday with a turkey and tell me how much you like it), it seems like the perfect holiday for a romance novel.  Not that we ever see those books.  Then, there are the non-Christian holidays of Chanukah and Kwanzaa, neither of which are found in very many romance novels that I've found.  Googling wasn't much of a help in this endeavor.  Last, there is New Year's Eve/Day, which would also be good romance novel fodder.  It did provide the perfect ending for When Harry Met Sally.  For those that want to delve into other holidays, here is a list of some of the books that I found (a surprising number of books were less than 100 pages, so I didn't feel that they warranted a place on this list).

Thanksgiving


1. Once Upon A Thanksgiving by Holly Jacobs


It's A Time For Giving And Receiving...Love

As if working and raising her family of five--four kids and one demanding cat--isn't enough, Samantha Williams has been volunteered to oversee a Thanksgiving pageant at her kids' school. So a relationship is the last thing on this stretched-too-thin single mother's mind.

Until she meets the new interim principal--sexy, single Harry Remington. Her childhood friend.

Harry is welcomed into Samantha's home as if he belonged. Being part of her sprawling family--even if it's only temporary--makes him realize how much he misses having a real home. Best of all, he and Samantha are starting to trust each other. How can he say goodbye to all that? How can he leave when he's just found the best reason of all to stay?


2. Music of My Heart by Dana Elian


Adrianna Whitaker has a lot of thinking to do. She carries the weight of the world on her shoulders in the the form of several emotional secrets, one of which will soon reveal itself whether she's ready for it or not. Staying behind at the hotel while the rest of the band and crew flies home for Thanksgiving sounds like a great idea.

Luke Preston needs a break after five months on the road, and a week of uninterrupted peace and quiet is just too good to pass up.

So much for solitude. And just wait till the media gets wind that they're holed up in the hotel together.

Without the band and crew around for distraction, Luke and Adrianna find that mutual admiration and respect is only the tip of the iceberg. A wonderful sonata of passion and compassion sizzles just below the surface. Soon the unexpected symphony has Adrianna wishing for things that can never be, and Luke entertaining thoughts of fatherhood.

With the help of one very sassy angel, perhaps these old friends will finally see what's been right in front of them for years.


3. Thanksgiving by Janet Evanovich


One autumn day Megan Murphy meets Pat Hunter, the handsome owner of a rabbit--who eats dresses. Hunter, the new pediatrician, is given an infant to care for, and Megan falls for both of them. Their attraction grows in leaps and bounds, especially when everyone they meet thinks they're married. C.J. Critt keeps the action moving and the laughter flowing as Megan and Pat care for the baby, the rabbit, and each other's hearts. Critt's warm performance recounts a joint Thanksgiving, including an especially warm kitchen, and a romp through the town's historic village. Evanovich's romantic humor is comfortably performed in Critt's relaxed and inviting voice.


4. Thanksgiving Daddy by Rachel Lee


Honor, duty and loyalty drove Major Edith Clapton to risk her life flying Combat Search and Recovery in Afghanistan. Hunger, desire and lust drove her into the arms of Seth Hardin, a gorgeous navy SEAL she had airlifted to safety. Their epic one-night stand in the shadow of the Afghan mountains has left Edie facing the most important mission of her life: motherhood.


After sharing her news, Edie is stunned by Seth's insistence on being a father to his child—and the bewildering feelings this practical stranger has stirred within her. This wasn't part of her life-in-the-navy plan! Should she flee back to military life for a desk job and single parenthood? Or give thanks for this unexpected family?


5. Thanksgiving Groom by May McGoldrick

Heiress Penelope Lear came to Treasure Creek, Alaska, in search of adventure. And to prove to everyone she's more than just a pretty face. But when she gets lost in the middle of the wilderness—in chilly November—Penelope needs help. Her rescuer? The mysterious man who's been missing from town for months.


Tucker Lawson, a handsome former lawyer, is now a man of the land—and doesn't want to be found. As Thanksgiving approaches, he promises to lead Penelope back to Treasure Creek.


But will he go as her groom?


Chanukah


1. A Candle for Nick by Lorna Michaels


Mallory Brenner's life was in a tailspin. Her son, Nick, had been diagnosed with a fatal disease and his best hope of survival was Dr. Kent Berger, the one man Mallory never expected—orwanted—to see again. For more than ten years Mallory had kept Nick's paternity a secret and now, to save her son, Mallory would continue to keep it. Still, the more time the two males spent together, the harder Nick fell for his newfound hero…and the more Mallory realized how much she'd missed him. Kent deserved to know the truth, but while her son's life hung in the balance, could she risk telling him?


Could she risk not telling him?


2. Eight Tiny Flames (from a Very Scandalous Holiday) by Christa McHugh
1944 Ardennes, WWII

Lt. Ruth Mencher has always secretly admired Capt. Joseph Klein, but it takes the lighting of a Hanukkah candle to uncover the spark of mutual attraction. Each night awakens a new facet of their relationship, but as the Battle of the Bulge begins, the approaching Nazi forces threaten to tear them apart.


New Year's Eve/Day


1. Not Another New Year's by Christie Ridgeway



 

After all, this year brought Hannah Davis nothing but the memory of her wandering fiancé marrying someone else behind her back. Now, sitting alone at a bar in Coronado, California, on December 31, she decides to do something radical . . . and lets a brooding good-looker take her to bed. But when a hysterical woman bursts into their room much too early on New Year's Day, Hannah realizes this guy's more complicated than she thought . . .


Ex-Secret Service Agent Tanner Hart screwed up, big-time! Hoping to temporarily boot some of the ghosts from his life, he hooked up with this sexy stranger for a hot one-night stand—only to discover she's the woman he's agreed to protect . . . from men just like him!


But a new year is a time for fresh beginnings. Despite the danger, the hoopla, and the hangovers, if Hannah's brave enough to risk her heart again—and Tanner's wise enough to realize he deserves it—maybe this one will be different.


2. Same Time, Next Year by Debbie Maccomber

James Wilkens was almost a Manning groom—because he almost married one of the Manning sisters. With that broken engagement behind him, he spends New Year's Eve in Las Vegas…where he meets Summer Lawton. She's just suffered a painful betrayal, and James promises her that in a year, she'll be over it. To prove his point, he makes a date to meet her in Vegas Same Time, Next Year. Except it turns out to be more than a date—it's a wedding!


3. Kiss and Tell by Suzanne Brockman

From New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Brockmann comes a funny, feisty, romantic tale about childhood rivals who discover the mystery of grown-up love.

When Leila Hunt is swept off her feet by a ninja at a New Year's Eve costume party, she has no idea who the masked man is—but after he disappears into the night, she’s determined to find him. When the clock struck twelve, what began as a friendly New Year's greeting quickly became the most unforgettable kiss Leila had ever experienced with anyone—including her absent boyfriend. But of all the possible suspects, Leila hardly imagines that the ninja is the same man who’s teased, tormented—and secretly intrigued her—since childhood.

Marshall Devlin is finally ready to face the terrifying truth: he’s in love with his best friend’s sister, and has been for years. There’s just one complication: Leila didn't know he was her ninja. To win her, Marsh will have to woo her. But can he make Leila forget their decades of verbal sparring in time to stop her from making the biggest mistake of her life?


4. Secret Agent Secretary by Melissa Cutler

Passion ignites after office hours in this installment of the ICE: Black Ops Defenders miniseries

Bullets whizzed past as Ryan Reitano and Avery Meadows escaped into the night. How could Ryan have suspected Avery of being the mole inside ICE? It was true she was no ordinary secretary. The way she used her wits and her lethal stiletto heels against the gunmen pursuing them astonished the jaded agent. And that killer body he'd somehow never noticed before...

Too bad there wasn't time to explore the possibilities. With Chiara's men hot on their trail, capturing the mercenary was more than just a mission for Ryan. He had his own reasons for wanting the criminal dead. But with his surprising--and utterly enchanting--new partner, perhaps there'd be a chance for romance later...if they survived.

SECRET AGENT SECRETARY is book #2 in Melissa Cutler's ICE: Black Ops Defenders series.


5. Countdown to a Kiss by Colleen Gleason

Four stories by four authors...one fateful New Year's Eve
Four kisses at midnight...
Three different sisters...
Two old flames...
One bet that drives it all!


The Devine sisters return to their hometown for New Year's Eve each year to attend the annual ball. Part of the tradition is their decade-old bet: whoever has no date at midnight has to kiss their nerdy neighbor Lewis Kampmueller.

Tess--burned by love, the glamorous Broadway star isn't interested in a repeat performance...until she encounters an old flame.
Annabelle--when the local etiquette expert gets caught breaking the law, her heart might have to pay the price.
Grace--the tough FBI agent has an easy time being one of guys, but is she woman enough to keep a man?
Lewis--the shy nerd has made millions over the years...but is he smart enough to catch the woman of his dreams?

Who will lose the bet but win out in love? Four charming stories written by four different authors about one fateful New Year's Eve.

The champagne is poured. The clock is ticking. Join the countdown!


To be honest, I have never read any of these books, although I've heard of several of these authors.  These are based off of a search of non-Christmas holiday romances; I will add another post on Christmas themed romances soon.

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