Teased unmercifully for
years by the town bully, and
forced to wait hand and foot on her lazy, spiteful brother, impetuous Charlotte
Bass harbors no dreams of ever tying herself down to a man. Instead
of marriage, she fantasizes about escaping from her small town and
searching the globe for a place where she can be herself, and practice in
art no one around her seems to understand.
But all that changes the day her brother
brings home a Harvard classmate as a houseguest for the Christmas holidays.
Handsome Shaun Matheson is
as elegant a gentleman as even an artist like Charlotte could ever
imagine. His genuine concern for the put-upon young lady warms her
heart, and when his sweet lips salute hers, she begins to think that
marriage, at least to this fine man, might not be so horrid after all.
But Shaun, unable to stand up to his
heavy-handed father, quickly resigns himself to life without Charlotte,
and leaves that broken-hearted young lady behind with nary a second glance. With no
other recourse, disillusioned Charlotte accepts a betrothal from her only
other suitor: Giles Williams, the very same bully who tormented her all her life!
In her heart of hearts, Charlotte knows
she and Shaun belong together. But can these two wounded souls
swallow their pride, defy their families, and find their way back into
each other's arms?
worked for me:
I don't generally read a lot of American-setting romances, which really is
odd given that two of my first love stories were the "Anne of Green Gables" and
"Little House on the Prairie" series. Reading "A Country Christmas",
I felt I could perceive shades of Anne and Laura in Charlotte.
There were certainly a plethora
of horrible, hateful people to despise and pity in this story.
(I didn't share Charlotte's type of home-life, but I too had a Giles
Williams in my life from the cradle 'til the day I graduated from school, so I could sympathize with the poor girl on that count.)
I enjoyed the secondary romance
between Charlotte's bosom friend Sarah and her beau, and wouldn't have
minded seeing more of it.
the two marriage proposals I definitely preferred the latter with its
perfect timing! And the ending of the story had a
certain poetic justice to it which left me smiling.
Size-wise Charlotte was
still a plump young girl at the beginning of the book, but by its
conclusion had matured into a
lovely, voluptuous young lady.
What didn't work for me:
influenced by having read more traditional British romances set in this
time period than I have American ones, but I felt the tone of this story
lent itself to a later time, perhaps the close of the19th century rather
than the stricter, more formal 1830s.
I can't go into it without
spoiling plot points, but there was a scene revolving around a winter
storm which had a few elements which didn't work for me.
story with its gentle humor was like warm gingerbread with whipped
topping: comfortingly sweet with a hint of spice.
Warning: there are some steamy scenes in this book.
If you liked "A Country
Christmas" you might also enjoy "Wishes", "The Bride
of Willow Creek",
"Beckett's Birthright", "Land of Dreams",
"No Ordinary Princess",
"The Bluebird and the Sparrow", or
Hero's Best Friend".
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this book and have a comment to
make on it? Join a discussion about the book at the Dangerous Curves
or submit a review
to this website.