An online marketing consultant, an avid reader of 400 + books a year. Professional reader, reviewer, and blogger. Enjoy ARCs and new releases.
By: Debbie Macomber
Publisher: Random House
Publication Date: 10/4/2016
My Rating: 4 Stars
A special thank you to Random House and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Debbie Macomber delivers her annual heartwarming Christmas holiday story, Hallmark style, TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS —when a little kindness goes a long way. From, a creative blog, and two neighbors which have different opinions of the Christmas holidays. A little holiday contemporary romance magic in the most likely of places.Opposites attract.
Cain Maddox is not a friendly neighbor. He, in fact, steals Julia Padden’s newspaper and thinks nothing of it. Neighbors in the same apartment complex, Julia is appalled by his behavior. He also has an Irish setter, Schroeder, the one he had inherited from his grandfather Bernie when he moved into the assisted-living complex. Not only was he unfriendly, he was a thief.
Julia was all about the Christmas, the season of goodwill and charity. Apparently, her grumpy neighbor had not taken the spirit of Christmas to heart. She works at Macys (in the men’s department) and is debt-free, for the last seven years. She had been forced to drop out of college and take night classes while working full time. It took her longer to get her degree in communications.
The holidays were quite challenging and got in the way of visiting with her family and other activities. She also volunteers at the Boys and Girls Club to help her friend and the youngsters with their holiday program.
She was thirty-one, and not currently in a serious relationship, after Dylan. She also ran a blog. She was going through interviews with a software company, and because the job was in social media, the company suggested a competition between the final two candidates in the form of a blog. The candidate who could generate the largest following in the month of December would be awarded the job.
Cain thought his neighbor, was a bit "over the top" with her cutesy, talkative personality. Usually, the chirpy and happy ones did not appeal to him. He could sense she was "trouble" the first moment he saw her with her exuberant good morning, “Ms. Sunshine.”
Julia’s friend, Cammie suggested she kill him with kindness. After all, it was only twelve days to Christmas. The idea comes to her to generate interest in the blog. The neighbor would be a perfect topic.
She would report the progress. Readers would love it! Her friend said she needed something fresh and fun. A subject to pique interest. The man was annoying, disagreeable, and stubborn (handsome of course, as well). She decided to do it,“Twelve Days of Christmas.”
From her creative funny blog entries, Julia begins trying to turn “Scrooge” into some kind of nice person, with the help of her readers and followers. She welcomes their comments and ideas. The comments start rolling in, and at the same time, she begins to notice how buff her neighbor is. Cain also had to admit his irritating neighbor was beginning to "get to him."
From Bah humbug to a little help from his grandfather Bernie at the Manor House, and some holiday baking, Julia begins to learn a little more about her mysterious neighbor and his background.
Ebenezer even accuses her of stalking him, when they wind up in the same places. Will" killing him with kindness", be the death of her? She continues on with the help of her newfound social media blog fans’ comments and encouragement--which is a hit.
Soon she finds herself looking forward to seeing Cain, but she could not let him know about her little experiment. From the flu, and possibly falling for the guy, a little mischief and holiday romance may be in store, while at the same time, the blog may be so popular, she may even win the job as December 25 comes to the final chapter.
Will he find out she was using him and risk losing the relationship with her newfound romantic love? Now the TV station wants to interview him for a human interest story for Christmas Eve! She was praying he would not find out about her blog.
With some holiday cheer, unexpected romance, puppies, some fun and witty social media creativity for the ultimate a dream job, and an extra dash of love—Macomber captures the Christmas spirit with a modern day twist.
As an added bonus, savor the magic of the season with Debbie Macomber’s Christmas novel preview: Dashing Through the Snow, (Coming in paperback, Oct 11, 2016) filled with warmth, humor, the promise of love, and a dash of unexpected adventure. (Highly recommend the Hallmark Movie) love Megan Ory.
After a snafu at the airport, Ashley is forced to rent a car in order to make it home to Seattle by Christmas. She ends up sharing the last car on the lot with Dash, a handsome stranger, who also needs to get to Seattle. Little does Ashley know that the "snafu" is because she is on the FBI's no-fly list, and Dash is an undercover agent assigned to trail her.
I also purchased the audiobook, narrated by Suzanne Elise Freeman, for an entertaining performance.
Pre-order If Not For You Coming March 21, 2017.