A North Carolina bookstore is the setting for this Christmas romance featuring a lovesick cowboy and the New York City publicist who resists his charms.
Publicist Savannah Wilson is visiting Fairdale, North Carolina, to help her best friend launch a bookstore specializing in romance novels. Raised by a cold, uncaring family, Savy has no intention of marrying or having children. Her heart’s desire is to get her career back after a professional disaster ruined her reputation, so she ignores the longing looks thrown her way by hunky Joaquin Solis. Quino also has a tragic backstory: His parents were killed in a car accident, making him guardian of his younger sister, who barely survived a traumatic brain injury. He’s a good old boy who runs Shadow Pine Stables, loves Fairdale, and thinks, for pretty much no reason at all, that Savy would be the perfect mate. Quino has turned tragedy into a love for Christmas, but for Savy, the holidays are a reminder of what she lacks. Savy “got the feeling he was one of those people who found joy in every day, not just the holiday.” Their sexual attraction is instant, but as Quino’s cheesy sweaters and ever ready mistletoe wear her down, Savy begins to appreciate more than his biceps. Quino’s difficulty accepting his little sister’s independence is handled with subtlety, but a subplot involving a reclusive romance novelist is just silly.
A predictable small-town romance that adds nothing to an already overcrowded genre.