Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Tour Book Review: Mistletoe Miracles, by Jodi Thomas

Mistletoe Miracles
(Ramson Canyon, Book 7)
Jodi Thomas
Mass Market Paperback, 368 pages
September 25, 2018
Christmas Romance, 
Contemporary Romance

A small-town Texas Christmas story, where hearts are lost, love is found, and family always brings you back home.

Griffin Holloway is desperate: the Maverick Ranch has been in his family for generations, but lately, it’s a money pit. He’d sooner marry one of his horses than sell the ranch. Marriage, though, could be a solution. If he can woo a wealthy bride, he might save the ranch—just in time for Christmas.

Jaxon O’Grady likes his solitude just fine, thank you very much. But when a car accident brings the unexpected to his door, he realizes just how much one person can need another.

Crossroads is the perfect place for Jamie Johnson: avoiding nosy questions about why she’s single, she’s happy to keep to her lakeside home. So she’s baffled when she gets the strangest Christmas present of all, in the form of a Mr. Johnson, asleep on her sofa. Who is he, and why does everyone think he’s her husband?

In this uplifting novel, three unlikely couples discover just what Crossroads, Texas, can offer: romance, belonging, and plenty of Christmas spirit.


A complimentary copy of this book was provided 
by TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. And I honestly loved it!
All opinions expressed are my own.

The Christmas season has always been associated with home, family love, and romantic relationships. Thus, I've always thought that romance novels were especially fabulous reading material during this season. In this particular romance novel, though, Christmas is only the backdrop of the plot. The author has placed the  main focus on the three wonderful relationships she has created, all set in the fictional town of Crossroads. Because of this, Mistletoe Miracles can really be enjoyed at any time of year.

The stories of three couples are featured here. The circumstances bringing each of these characters together are totally different, and Thomas brings each story to a satisfactory, happy ending, with all ends neatly tied. This is the sign of a skillful writer, and Thomas is obviously at the top of her game! She seamlessly flows from one couple to the other, easily keeping the reader's interest throughout. 

We are first introduced to the Holloway brothers. They own a large ranch, but are on the verge of losing it. Then Griffin, the oldest, comes up with a very unusual idea -- one of the three brothers must marry a wealthy woman by Christmas, or the ranch will definitely go under. This reminds me of the same type of ploy, used by insolvent male aristocrats at one point in British history, who suddenly became  interested in marrying wealthy American women who were equally interested in acquiring a title, as well as a place among the British nobility. So, this is the same thing, Texas style! I found it totally hilarious!

The woman Griffin is introduced to has reasons of her own for wanting a marriage of convenience, so the two strike a bargain. Sunlan Krown does indeed have the necessary wealth, and she is a very independent woman. She intends to remain that way, too, even after marriage to Griffin. She is not, however, an arrogant, demanding person, nor does she ever treat her intended with contempt. On his end, Griffin never tries to manipulate or control her.  In fact, he has an enormous admiration for her, especially in view of her parents' controlling past.

Bottom line, both Griffin and Sunlan are honest people who think their arrangement will work out, if everyone keeps up his or her end of the bargain. They never expected anything more....

The second couple has a very cute story, and I must admit that theirs was my favorite one in the book. Jamie and Wyatt Johnson even have the same last name, and people in Crossroads already think they're married, as Jamie  has been pretending to be married for some time now, in order to keep unwelcome male attentions at bay. She continues with this charade when she moves to Crossroads. But then one day, Captain Wyatt Johnson, of the U.S. Army, mysteriously appears in her house.

So Jamie and Wyatt start out protecting her secret. But then they start to play house, and it all becomes oh-so-real, and wonderful, as well. Suffice it to say that this story is a very sweet, tender, and romantic one!

Wyatt is an honorable man who has been yearning for a home and family of his own. Jamie, on the other hand, seems content to live alone, with her sentimental Precious Moments collection and her single-minded dedication to her students. Until Captain Johnson shows up, of course. Then, suddenly, holidays become important, and a ready-made "husband" a welcome surprise.

The third story was a bit hard to take, although it was a very endearing one. As a bonus, there's a dog involved, a beautiful collie named "Charlie", although when Jaxon O'Grady, the town hermit, finds him after a freeway accident, "Charlie" then becomes "Buddy". 

This story deals with domestic violence, so it wasn't quite a pleasant read. It turns out that "Charlie" belongs to Mallory Mayweather, whose live-in boyfriend has nearly killed her during a horrible argument. Jax unexpectedly becomes her caretaker and, of course, the two grow very close. Their story brings the promise of new beginnings. I really related to their story, too, as I know from my own experience what it's like to be abused, although not to the extent that Mallory experienced. 

Jax is a quiet, introspective man, but he's also hero material. Life events have turned him into a recluse, but he's ready to help when needed. He has integrity and grit, and is exactly the kind of man Mallory can tentatively begin to trust. 

Mallory is a sweet,j kind person, just like Jamie Johnson. She's spunky and strong, as well, ready to remake her life. She and Jax immediately bond over their difficult pasts, as well as through "Charlie/Buddy". 

Each of these stories was a delight to read! It's great to see characters who are real, live people, who suffer and love and take on the world, whatever hand is dealt to them. All of these characters have problems to deal with, or longings to fulfill, and they are also open to love, some more fully than others. They are also very likable people, and I would love to be able to meet them somehow! 

If anything, I do wish Thomas had dedicated an entire book to each of these relationships, but I also like the way she presented the stories, all in one book.

I highly recommend this novel to lovers of romance anywhere, in any season! Although I do prefer paranormal romance, I also enjoy contemporaries from time to time. This one is a definite keeper, and I'm looking forward to reading more Jodi Thomas titles in the near future! Kudos to Ms. Thomas!


Purchase Links

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jodi Thomas has published over 30 books in both the historical romance and contemporary genres, the majority of which are set in her home state of Texas. Publishers Weekly calls her novels “Distinctive…Memorable,” and that in her stories “[tension] rides high, mixed with humor and kisses more passionate than most full-on love scenes.” In 2006, Romance Writers of America (RITA) inducted Thomas into the RWA Hall of Fame for winning her third RITA for The Texan's Reward. She also received the National Readers’ Choice Award in 2009 for Twisted Creek (2008) and Tall, Dark, And Texan (2008). While continuing to work as a novelist, Thomas also functions as Writer-In- Residence at the West Texas A&M University campus, where she inspires students and alumni in their own writing pursuits.

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  1. These all sound so lovely and positive -- and perfect for Christmas!

    1. Hi, Verushka!

      Yes, these stories are perfect for the Chirstmas season! It's a little early for that, but publishers get their seasonal books out early!

      Thanks for commenting!! <3 :)

  2. The holidays really are the perfect time for books like these. Even I read some lighter things during December :)

    1. Hi, Barb!

      Yes, they are! It's a bit early for Christmas romance novels, but publishers like to get these books out early.

      As you know, I MUCH prefer lighter reads, especially around Christmas. :)

      Thanks for commenting!! <3 :) HUGS TO YOU AND THE PUPS, AND "WOOF, WOOF" TO THEM!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

  3. I'm smiling right now because after reading your review I think I would really love this book. It sounds like such a great read. Gah!

    1. Hi, Steph!

      Awwww.....THANK YOU!!! You're so sweet!!! <3 <3

      This book is a REAL treat! I highly recommend it to you! And the good thing is, you can really read it at any time of year!

      Thanks for the nice comment!! HUGS!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

  4. Replies
    1. Hi, Heather!

      This one was another TLC winner!! LOVED it!!

      Thanks for the comment!! <3 :)


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