Like the last few years we at Love Bytes are reviewing the whole dsp advent calender
There will be a review posted each day throughout the month of December.
Let us know what you think of the reviews and the stories and have a chance to win a fabulous giveaway.
First Prize: 10 Dreamspinner Press ebooks (winner’s choice)
Second Prize: 5 Dreamspinner Press ebooks (winner’s choice)
Third Prize: 3 Dreamspinner Press ebooks (winner’s choice)
Reviewed by Tori (Vicki)
TITLE: A Holiday Crush
SERIES: 2017 Advent Calendar – Stocking Stuffers
AUTHOR: CJane Elliot
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 50 pages
RELEASE DATE: December 2017
San Francisco lawyer Brad Halberstam is in a rut. At forty-one, he’s successful but alone. Even his holidays are predictable—he spends every Christmas golfing in Napa with his ex-boyfriend. Then attractive but oh-so-young filmmaker Michael Blair invites him out. Brad joins Michael and his housemates in their holiday celebrations and learns that life can be joyful. He hesitates to saddle Michael with a much-older boyfriend but as their attraction ignites, Brad’s tempted to let Michael sweep him into a bright new future.
Michael lives in a group house in Berkeley. He loves making life into a celebration, especially during the holidays. Michael longs for a partner, and he hopes serious but sweet Brad Halberstam is the one. Michael’s infatuation grows over caroling and cookies, but his housemate reminds him that Michael always latches on to someone during the holidays, so he won’t be alone. After a misunderstanding, Michael loses heart, no longer sure if his relationship with Brad is real or just another Christmas crush.
Brad and Michael meet through work, then run in to each other one evening and have a drink or two. Brad enjoys the energy and enthusiasm Michael and his younger friends, but seems a bit overwhelmed by all of them. He’s attracted to Michael, but just isn’t sure if he should pursue a relationship with him, they are in such different places in their lives. But he ends up seeing Michael a couple of times, exploring their shared love of music. Even attending a Christmas party at Michael’s shared house! All appears to be going well until the big misunderstanding…
Now I like a good fluffy holiday romance, and on some levels that’s what this is. The basic story of Brad and Michael sneaking in to a relationship, the music they share, the age difference, the little bit of drama over the misunderstanding, and the ending were all fine and enjoyable. I liked the two of them, I liked their differences, I like the side characters, and I liked the overall story. What I didn’t like was the politics. Even though I agree with the authors feelings, I didn’t care for the inclusion of the politics in the story. There are several comments by characters about the political state in the US, there is a side character with an immigration issue, and as soon as he was introduced I knew what was going to happen with him. And of course it did, no surprise there. I kept getting pulled out of the holiday love story, and getting annoyed by the politics. One of the reasons I read romance novels is to escape reality. If I want to hear people bitch about Trump, I’ll go to Facebook, where I see it every day. I didn’t like it included in what otherwise would have been a sweet little holiday story.
But that is obviously a personal issue for me, and may not be an issue for someone else.