As I’ve said before, novellas are hit or miss for me. This holiday anthology is a hit. I planned to read A Very Scandalous Holiday over a couple of days. However, once I got started, I read the book straight through to the end in one setting. Although I only got to spend a small amount of with them, I felt like the characters in each story were interesting and the stories were unique.
A Very Scandalous Holiday offers true variety. I hate to use a cliche, but A Very Scandalous Holiday is a romance anthology where you don’t have to choose between naughty or nice. Or classic or modern. Who doesn’t want to spend a little time with hunky heroes and strong heroines in 1920s Chicago and Regency-era England? I think most historical romance fans will find something to like in this set.
And holiday is not “code” for Christmas. There is a heart-warming (and dare I say educational) Hanukkah story set in World War II.
I’ve already recommended this book to a friend who claims that she never has time to read – as she says – “a whole book.” If you are anything like me, the end of the year is a very busy period and your reading time suffers. A Very Scandalous Holiday is a good way to tap into the holiday reading spirit without a heavy investment of time.
All of the authors in this anthology were new to me. This set of novellas gave me the opportunity to sample each author’s work. I’ll definitely be adding books from each one to my to-be-read list.
I am a sucker for stories with an epistolary element so I have included an excerpt from Letters at Christmas by Amber Lin at the bottom of this post.
- Fans of historical romance
- Fans of holiday fiction
- Fans of novellas (and maybe short stories)
NOTE: This book contains some graphic sexual content.
This post is part of the A Very Scandalous Holiday Book Tour hosted by Virtual Book Tour Cafe. I received a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. Be sure to enter to win one of three awesome prize packs below. See the Tour Schedule for additional stops.
I counted A Very Scandalous Holiday toward task 5.8 – 50 years ago – The Outer Limits (read an anthology or book of collected short stories, poetry, essays, novellas or other literary works) in the Seasonal Reading Challenge on Goodreads.
I also voted for A Very Scandalous Holiday in Goodreads’ listopia under Historical Christmas/Winter Romance.
About The Book
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Entangled Publishing, LLC ( Scandalous ) Imprint
Release Date: 10-14-13
Entangled Publishing presents…A Very Scandalous Holiday Anthology. Four very spirited vignettes of holidays past.
Erin’s Gift by Nancy Fraser
Widower, Seth Harrison, has no intention of falling in love again but will he be able to resist the sweetness of his son’s nanny, Erin O’Mara—his sister’s best friend?
An Eternity of You by Sophia Garrett
The Duke of Sharrington left Rebecca with more than a broken heart six years ago—he left her with a son. His return rekindles their passion, but only a Christmas miracle will convince the town surgeon to believe in his promises of eternity again.
Letters at Christmas by Amber Lin
England, late Regency
After three years at sea, Captain Hale Prescott has the means to marry the love of his life and his best friend’s sister, Sidony Harbeck. However, she might never speak to him again. Despite their whispered adolescent promises, he never wrote her a single letter…at least, none he ever sent.
Eight Tiny Flames by Crista 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.
About The Authors
Like most authors, Nancy began writing at an early age, usually on the walls and with crayons or, heaven forbid, permanent markers. Her love of writing often made her the English teacher’s pet which, of course, resulted in a whole lot of teasing. Still, it was worth it.
In her time away from writing, Nancy dotes on her five grandchildren. She’s currently happily single (let’s face it, it’s difficult to find a man who can live up to her sexy, fictitious heroes) and enjoying life as is for the time being.
Nancy’s Author Links
Sophia Garrett always knew she wanted to be a writer, and more specifically, a historical romance writer. Her teenage years were spent rabidly gobbling up the newest books from romance icons such as Johanna Lindsey, Sabrina Jefferies, Julie Garwood, and Kathleen E. Woodiweiss. She composed her first romance novel about the American Revolution, in high school.
When Sophia is not researching…well, she’s always researching! But in her non-working hours she enjoys studying historical events (yes, she’s one of those girls), watching documentaries, taking in action-packed dramas at the theatre, and spending as much time as possible with her two young sons collecting bugs, racing Hot Wheels, and smashing things in video games.
Her second passion is animals, so much so that at one time she considered a career in veterinary medicine. Chemistry, however, waged war on her sanity, and she decided training horses was far less harmful than trying to manipulate miniscule objects that can’t be seen. Setting her sweatshirt on fire in lab might have had something to do with that. She still has her horses but has added a chicken…or two. And a duck. And a (house) pig. And several dogs. And cats. And… who knows what might turn up next!
Sophia frequently attends conferences and signing events that take her throughout the United States. In addition, she often presents for her local Romance Writers of America chapters and is available to present to additional authors’ groups. She loves to connect with readers and writers alike, so be sure to say hello!
- Romance Writers of America
- Heartland Romance Authors
- Midwest Romance Writers
Sophia Author Links
Amber Lin writes erotic romance with damaged souls and deep emotion.
Her debut novel Giving It Up (Loose Id, 9781611188431) received The Romance Review’s Top Pick, Night Owl Top Pick, and 5 Blue Ribbons from Romance Junkies. RT Book Reviews gave it 4.5 stars, calling it “truly extraordinary.” The sequel is slated for release in early 2013. Her small town romance will be published by Carina Press in Fall 2013.
Amber married her high school sweetheart, birthed a kid who’s smarter than she is, and spends her nights writing down her dirty thoughts. In other words, life is good
Amber’s Author Links
Crista McHugh is a multiple award-winning author of fantasy romance and paranormal romance with heroines who are smart, sexy, and anything but ordinary.
Growing up in small town Alabama, Crista relied on story-telling as a natural way for her to pass the time and keep her two younger sisters entertained.
She currently lives in the Audi-filled suburbs of Seattle with her husband and two children, maintaining her alter ego of mild-mannered physician by day while she continues to pursue writing on nights and weekends.
Just for laughs, here are some of the jobs she’s had in the past to pay the bills: barista, bartender, sommelier, stagehand, actress, morgue attendant, and autopsy assistant.
And she’s also a recovering LARPer. (She blames it on her crazy college days)
To be the first to know about her latest releases or to be entered into exclusive contests, please sign up for her newsletter using the contact form on her webpage, www.cristamchugh.com.
Crista Author Links
Excerpt from Letters at Christmas by Amber Lin
Hale’s presence stirred the air behind her. She stared straight ahead at the frost-covered panes. His breath ruffled her hair.
“Were you looking for me?” he whispered. “You knew I’d arrive today. Is that why the window was open?”
An embarrassed flush heated her skin. She felt too exposed, like a raw nerve. Still, there was one advantage to being found out. She didn’t have to hide any longer. Turning, she faced him.
He bent his head to her.He was going to kiss her. She should turn away. She should tell him no. His lips met hers directly, and she moaned. She truly moaned, aloud. He couldhearher, and instead of dying of mortification, she wrapped her arms around his neck. He made a sound of surprise before holding her more closely. His hand slipped to the small of her back and pulled her against him. His other hand fanned along her jaw, holding her steady as he kissed her. She needed his guidance because her body had lost all sense and reason. Her limbs trembled, her heart raced.
“Jesus, I missed you.”
It was the wrong thing to say. She pulled back. “You didn’t write. You promised to write to me. Every single day, you said.” She let sarcasm color her voice. “You could have skipped a few days. That would have been fine.”
“No letters. Not even one.” She laughed hollowly. “You said you loved me, Hale, and you couldn’t even bring yourself to write one letter.”
“I did… Damn it.” He ran a hand through his hair.
She waited for him to explain what he meant. A lump lodged in her throat when he said nothing. He’d forgotten about her, and now he was lying to her. For what purpose? So he could win a bet? Because he’d gotten tired of traveling the world and could now settle for poor little Sidony?
“Get out,” she said evenly.