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Three hottie humbugs find holiday magic where they least expect it...Donna Kauffman Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells Holly hates the yuletide season more than ever since she inherited her mother’s Christmas novelty store, but her childhood pal Sean’s determined to warm her up - to Christmas and to him. When they uncover a diary concealing secrets involving both their families, t Three hottie humbugs find holiday magic where they least expect it...Donna Kauffman Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells Holly hates the yuletide season more than ever since she inherited her mother’s Christmas novelty store, but her childhood pal Sean’s determined to warm her up - to Christmas and to him. When they uncover a diary concealing secrets involving both their families, this could be the Christmas that changes their lives forever...Jill Shalvis Bah Handsome! Behind on her bills, B&B owner Hope receives an unlikely guest - stranded solicitor Danny, who’s been threatening to put her out of business. Hope’s staff sees more fire than fight in the sparks that fly as they try and bring Hope and Danny together, but only a Christmas miracle can help these unlikely lovers see the light...HelenKay Dimon It's Hotter at Christmas Hawaii’s no paradise for Marissa, who, thanks to a series of unfortunate events, can’t seem to get away from the sand to enjoy her Christmas East Coast style - with plenty of snow and slush. But tall, dark, and serious police officer Ted’s about to give this bad Santa in heels a Mele Kalikimaka she’ll never forget...


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Three hottie humbugs find holiday magic where they least expect it...Donna Kauffman Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells Holly hates the yuletide season more than ever since she inherited her mother’s Christmas novelty store, but her childhood pal Sean’s determined to warm her up - to Christmas and to him. When they uncover a diary concealing secrets involving both their families, t Three hottie humbugs find holiday magic where they least expect it...Donna Kauffman Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells Holly hates the yuletide season more than ever since she inherited her mother’s Christmas novelty store, but her childhood pal Sean’s determined to warm her up - to Christmas and to him. When they uncover a diary concealing secrets involving both their families, this could be the Christmas that changes their lives forever...Jill Shalvis Bah Handsome! Behind on her bills, B&B owner Hope receives an unlikely guest - stranded solicitor Danny, who’s been threatening to put her out of business. Hope’s staff sees more fire than fight in the sparks that fly as they try and bring Hope and Danny together, but only a Christmas miracle can help these unlikely lovers see the light...HelenKay Dimon It's Hotter at Christmas Hawaii’s no paradise for Marissa, who, thanks to a series of unfortunate events, can’t seem to get away from the sand to enjoy her Christmas East Coast style - with plenty of snow and slush. But tall, dark, and serious police officer Ted’s about to give this bad Santa in heels a Mele Kalikimaka she’ll never forget...

30 review for Kissing Santa Claus

  1. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    Tis The Season A Thon: Read a holiday themed book Lock Stock and Jingle Bells by Donna Kaufman was the first story in this collection and by far my lowest rated. I originally rated it 3 stars but now I'm thinking its more of 2.5 star read. I just wasn't interested in the love story and the "mystery" was treated like an afterthought. Bah Handsome by Jill Shalvis is my favorite story. A 5 star read but the title is awful. I love love love enemies 2 lovers and this story was just sexy fun. Its Hott Tis The Season A Thon: Read a holiday themed book Lock Stock and Jingle Bells by Donna Kaufman was the first story in this collection and by far my lowest rated. I originally rated it 3 stars but now I'm thinking its more of 2.5 star read. I just wasn't interested in the love story and the "mystery" was treated like an afterthought. Bah Handsome by Jill Shalvis is my favorite story. A 5 star read but the title is awful. I love love love enemies 2 lovers and this story was just sexy fun. Its Hotter At Christmas by Helenkay Dimon is the final story in this collection and was a solid 4.5 star read. I usually hate insta love but this story was only 96 pages so I couldn't really complain plus it was a fun story with great characters. Overall this is a sexy holiday collection that's a quick fun read.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    Lock, Stock, and Jinglebells Donna Kauffman 2 stars I could not wait for this story to be over. It was mind-numbingly boring. I couldn't drum up any enthusiasm about the romance, and the plot about the Christmas shop Holly inherited from her mother was anything but compelling. The subplot about the journal Holly discovers in an antique roll-top desk felt completely out of place in the story. I consider 2 stars a generous rating. Bah, Handsome! Jill Shalvis 3.5 stars Very cute! This is actually the firs Lock, Stock, and Jinglebells Donna Kauffman 2 stars I could not wait for this story to be over. It was mind-numbingly boring. I couldn't drum up any enthusiasm about the romance, and the plot about the Christmas shop Holly inherited from her mother was anything but compelling. The subplot about the journal Holly discovers in an antique roll-top desk felt completely out of place in the story. I consider 2 stars a generous rating. Bah, Handsome! Jill Shalvis 3.5 stars Very cute! This is actually the first thing I've read by Jill Shalvis, and I really enjoyed it. The humor is great. The romance plot advances quickly due to the length restrictions of a novella, but it didn't feel overly rushed. I plan to read more by this author soon. It's Hotter at Christmas HelenKay Dimon 2 stars Reading this story felt like watching a train wreck in slow motion. It was agonizing, yet morbidly fascinating. There was so much wrong with this plot, but I'm going to start with the writing. Dimon's writing is abysmal. Her sentences are poorly constructed and her word choices are often bizarre. Take for example her description of Ted as dominating his environment with "a knowing hand." Hands have no cognative ability. They don't know anything. Besides, I'm not sure I want to know how Ted dominates his environment with his hand. That sounds either violent, or creepy. As for the plot, I can not imagine any law enforcement officer acting the way Ted does. I'm pretty sure there are rules against officers sleeping with people involved in their assigned cases. The term "conflict of interest" comes to mind. But when Ted asks Kane, his superior officer, to take him off Marissa's case so that he can sleep with her, Kane gives Ted his blessing to screw the alleged crime victim to his heart's content but refuses to take Ted off the case. Finally, what on earth does Marissa see in Ted? Not only does he have no manners and not even a hint of charm, but he doesn't even know what the word "obtuse" means, so he's ignorant and uneducated into the bargain. Wow, what a catch. I wanted to scream at her, "You're leaving your career, your family, your ENTIRE LIFE behind in Philadelphia for THIS guy?" So clearly, I did not like this story. So why did I give it two stars instead of one? Because I thoroughly enjoyed how much I disliked it. I cackled with malevolent glee as I took notes on everything I disliked about it. I figure the entertainment value is worth an extra star.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kati

    These three stories were so focused on sex between the characters that any character development was largely ignored. Not a book I'm going to keep in my collection or want to read again, I think. These three stories were so focused on sex between the characters that any character development was largely ignored. Not a book I'm going to keep in my collection or want to read again, I think.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Abra

    I received this as a freebie at RT15. This was a terrible book. I've read lots of Christmas novellas and short stories and many of them have been really good. There is no excuse for these stories. Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells by Donna Kauffman: This story had the MCs breathless all the time - no doubt this was because all their conversations consisted of long theatrical monologues. The heroine starts out all angsty over selling her mother's shop and making decisions about her life and then preced I received this as a freebie at RT15. This was a terrible book. I've read lots of Christmas novellas and short stories and many of them have been really good. There is no excuse for these stories. Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells by Donna Kauffman: This story had the MCs breathless all the time - no doubt this was because all their conversations consisted of long theatrical monologues. The heroine starts out all angsty over selling her mother's shop and making decisions about her life and then precedes to have everything handed to her on a silver platter tied up with a nice bow. She comes up with zero solutions to her problems on her own. Bah, Handsome! by Jill Shalvis: By far the worst of the three novellas. Jill Shalvis phoned this one in. As an example here is the effort to fit in the heroine's backstory on page two: "Honey, you're twenty-nine. That ship has not sailed. You're just being a pansy-ass because your last boyfriend stole all your money and ruined your credit before going to jail, forcing you to go begging from your asshole rich stepbrother." Wow, smooth. It's Hotter at Christmas by Helenkay Dimon: This was super clunky as well with the transition from let's sleep together for the next two days to forever together very jarring. Usually that transition just goes right over my head and I'm right with the couple (after all I do read romances), but this time it just came as a non-sequetor. It had nothing to do with what had just preceded it.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Libby Waterford

    I really liked all three stories, but especially Jill Shalvis's. Her story was sexy and believable. Also I'm a big fan of heroes who wear glasses. ;) I really liked all three stories, but especially Jill Shalvis's. Her story was sexy and believable. Also I'm a big fan of heroes who wear glasses. ;)

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kristen Lewendon

    These were fun; kind of the text equivalent of candy floss. None of these stories are going to change the world, but they were the light, frothy Christmas confections I was in the mood for. A little angsty, a little silly, a little suspenseful, there’s a lot of different styles to chose from. But, they all shared the magic of the season bringing a reluctant couple together.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca Wood

    More 2.5 stars. The first story was okay, a solid 3 stars. The second story was my favorite a 3.5/4 star. The last story was the worst I DNF’d it about 50 pages in.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells by: Donna Kauffman Holly and Sean sound like the perfect couple. It is a shame that they wasted all that time that they could have been together just because they were both so afraid of being rejected. If not for Holly's mother leaving her the store she may never have reconnected with Sean... she may have missed out on true love, and a real family. Bah Handsome! by: Jill Shalvis Hope has been through a lot in her life, she has dated all the wrong guys in the past and paid Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells by: Donna Kauffman Holly and Sean sound like the perfect couple. It is a shame that they wasted all that time that they could have been together just because they were both so afraid of being rejected. If not for Holly's mother leaving her the store she may never have reconnected with Sean... she may have missed out on true love, and a real family. Bah Handsome! by: Jill Shalvis Hope has been through a lot in her life, she has dated all the wrong guys in the past and paid for those mistakes in so many ways... I think there are many women out there who can relate to her. Hope is hanging in there but how much longer can she last? It's Hotter at Christmas by: Helen Kay Dimon Marissa is not having the best holiday season... purse stolen, flight boarding denied, hotel room broken into... what more can go wrong for this city girl? Ted has had nothing but bad luck in his life. Parents deceased, failed marriage, plus he practically raised his two siblings. Can Marissa be the key to a better life for Ted? First they have to uncover who is after Marissa.

  9. 4 out of 5

    CJ - It's only a Paper Moon

    The first one, "Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells" was a pretty good story, some editorial fixes needed to be made but satisfactory. So far "Bah Handsome" the second story really got me. The writing was fresh, witty and sexy and I liked the two main characters enough to wish that there had been a longer book on top of that I liked the secondary characters enough to wish that there had been another book about them. Sheesh, I'm going to have to find more from this woman because our writing styles are The first one, "Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells" was a pretty good story, some editorial fixes needed to be made but satisfactory. So far "Bah Handsome" the second story really got me. The writing was fresh, witty and sexy and I liked the two main characters enough to wish that there had been a longer book on top of that I liked the secondary characters enough to wish that there had been another book about them. Sheesh, I'm going to have to find more from this woman because our writing styles are similar (except she's more polished) and I've never read a love scene in the freezing cold that was as sexy as hers. I couldn't read the third one because I just couldn't get into it. All in all this anthology is a 3.5 and that's primarily due to the Jill Shalvis story. Looks like I've found myself another romance writer to check out.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Heather T

    I'm not sure. Some stories had potential, but they end the minute you get into them. Short stories either don't develop their characters well, or do a good job with the characters, but end the book too suddenly without the proper rises and falls. Very few authors manage the right balance. I saw potential in the first two, but Dimon was the only that I really got into because it felt more complete. Although, the Shalvis story made me want more and was more interesting for me. I just felt like it I'm not sure. Some stories had potential, but they end the minute you get into them. Short stories either don't develop their characters well, or do a good job with the characters, but end the book too suddenly without the proper rises and falls. Very few authors manage the right balance. I saw potential in the first two, but Dimon was the only that I really got into because it felt more complete. Although, the Shalvis story made me want more and was more interesting for me. I just felt like it left a bit hanging with the brother issues.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Cherise

    The first story by Donna Kauffman was OK. Some of the dialogue was a little odd to me, but the story wasn't that great, or that bad. Just middle of the road. I really liked the second story by Jill Shalvis. It was a cute and witty short story and I really enjoyed it. The third story was a dud. I gave up somewhere after chapter two. I tried reading chapter 3 but found myself thinking about laundry and dishes and other things more exciting than the story. LOL The first story by Donna Kauffman was OK. Some of the dialogue was a little odd to me, but the story wasn't that great, or that bad. Just middle of the road. I really liked the second story by Jill Shalvis. It was a cute and witty short story and I really enjoyed it. The third story was a dud. I gave up somewhere after chapter two. I tried reading chapter 3 but found myself thinking about laundry and dishes and other things more exciting than the story. LOL

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jo Reads Romance

    Pretty standard Christmas romance anthology 3 stars LOCK, STOCK & JINGLE BALLS - Donna Kauffman Holly Berry hates everything to do with Christmas. So it's no great joy to her when she inherits her mother's Christmas shop in the small town where she grew up in and then left as soon as she was able. But her childhood crush Sean Gallagher is determined to make sure this is a Christmas season that Holly won't soon forget. This story lacked any sparkle, Christmas or otherwise. The plot was quite Pretty standard Christmas romance anthology 3 stars LOCK, STOCK & JINGLE BALLS - Donna Kauffman Holly Berry hates everything to do with Christmas. So it's no great joy to her when she inherits her mother's Christmas shop in the small town where she grew up in and then left as soon as she was able. But her childhood crush Sean Gallagher is determined to make sure this is a Christmas season that Holly won't soon forget. This story lacked any sparkle, Christmas or otherwise. The plot was quite plodding, the characters lacking depth and the main focus of the story, a diary of secrets, was seemingly the prelude to another story by Kauffman. Disappointing. BAH, HANDSOME! - Jill Shalvis Hope O'Brien is struggling to keep her Colorado B&B in the black. She can't afford to turn down any paying customers but when accountant Danny Shaw (who just happens to be the man who's trying to put her out of business) turns up she might just change her mind. But the sparks that are flying aren't out of anger so the B&B staff attempt a little holiday matchmaking. This was an adorable story that kept my interest from beginning to end. I do love a sexy geek as a hero and Danny definitely was that. The couple had chemistry, there was humour and there was lots of snow. Not terribly Christmassy but it doesn't matter when the story is as good as this one is. IT'S HOTTER AT CHRISTMAS - HelenKay Dimon Marissa just can't believe her luck - all she wants is to leave Hawaii and head home to Philadelphia to enjoy some snow at Christmas yet she's been the victim of two thefts and now can't get a flight. The only person that can help her is police deputy Ted who is determined to show Marissa that Christmas doesn't need snow to be perfect. While I did enjoy this story, it didn't really have any real excitement. The plot was predictable and quite unrealistic and the characters weren't particularly endearing. It's not a horrible story but not one I can really remember despite only finishing it a couple of days ago. If you're looking for some light, festive, sexy reads then this might be the book for you. For me, the Jill Shalvis story is excellent but I could take or leave the other two. 3 stars.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Patti K

    Overall, not a bad read. I read this primarily for the Jill Shalvis story and also because I wanted to see if I liked Helenkay Dimon, since she has a series set in Hawaii, and this seemed like a good way to sample the Men of Hawaii stories. It was much better than the last collection I read for a couple reasons. First, the stories were longer (only three total, all about 100 pages) and that let them develop a little better. Second, I'd say they were written by authors with a little more talent fo Overall, not a bad read. I read this primarily for the Jill Shalvis story and also because I wanted to see if I liked Helenkay Dimon, since she has a series set in Hawaii, and this seemed like a good way to sample the Men of Hawaii stories. It was much better than the last collection I read for a couple reasons. First, the stories were longer (only three total, all about 100 pages) and that let them develop a little better. Second, I'd say they were written by authors with a little more talent for the short story, knowing that it's harder to make 'love at first sight' believable when you're rushing the outcome. Good short stories have to be strong ones in either character or setting (preferably both, but I suppose only one is required) because they have so little time to develop complex or interesting plots. All three authors did pretty well here. Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells, by Donna Kauffman I was not at all familiar with this author prior to this story but I'm certainly interested in reading more of her stuff. This was my favorite of the three. I thought Sean was great and I could really feel sympathy for Holly. The characters felt like real people and it was a believable story - two people who have known of one another almost their whole lives and who finally figure out they've been mutually attracted all this time. The only thing I didn't like was the subplot. It was weak and the line about the secret involving both their families is very misleading; Holly's mother is so insignificant to the subplot story that the only way it truly involves both families is that the desk was in her mother's shop. It wasn't a long enough story for that particular brand of subplot and the story could have easily stood on its own without pointless subplots. Now, had the baby given away been an actual descendent of Sean's, say his dad (seeing as his grandmother had lots of kids and was, in fact, a friend to the woman who gave up the baby), that might have been a good subplot (but better left to a full-length story; the repercussions would have been interesting to explore). For the baby to have been one of his zillion cousins? Eh. Like I said, it was an unnecessary part of the story. Nonetheless, I'll check out more of her books. Bah Handsome! by Jill Shalvis I'll preface this review by saying that I've read several of her novels and I have generally really enjoyed them (and have a few in the wings to be read next). However...I've got a few bones to pick with this story. First, I hate the title. Too cheesy. Second, while I'm generally a little wary of the 'love at first sight' story, she did a great job with that in Simply Irresistible, but this felt a little too rushed. Ok, sure, it wasn't 'first sight' because Hope had met Danny before. And it was more 'love/hate' than 'at first sight', but still. I think if it had been a full-length story, I'd have maybe bought it a little more. But I wasn't 100% convinced that they were dealing with anything more than lustful attraction, and it's hard to imagine someone changing their whole life because of that. Granted, Danny had been fed up with the money grubbing before and this was a good excuse, a catalyst, if you will, but I didn't buy it completely. It doesn't make me not want to read the rest of her stuff, but I think if she's writing short stories, maybe I'd rather read ones like the last one of hers I read, where the couple had a history longer than a few days or few meetings. She's at her best when she can make you really root for the couple. Also, I had a hard time believing that the momma bear WITH her cub would have been so keen to just run off...and sorry, but sex outside when it's only 5 degrees? No thanks... It's Hotter at Christmas, by Helenkay Dimon This was my other reason for reading this collection. I wanted to know if I liked her writing because she has some stories set in Kauai. As I said, I love Kauai (yes, I've been there) and unlike Shalvis' Colorado-set story, I can personally believe someone would go there the first time and seriously contemplate leaving their life behind to embrace island living. Not because Ted talks about that, not because we loved Hawaii that much, but because we actually met a couple who had done exactly that: left the fast-paced, smog-filled, crowded life of LA for a quiet life on Maui. When you're on island, it's really easy to understand why people want to do it. So, for me, I can understand why Marissa comes back, why she'd even consider really leaving Philly behind, especially if she had a job offer and a great guy already there. The problem I had was that I don't think she's really selling Kauai for someone who hasn't been there. When I'm reading the story, I am remembering my own experience on the island. She didn't describe it so that I believe someone who had never been to Hawaii would feel desperate to go there. For anyone who has read my reviews before, that can make or break a story for me sometimes, the ability to transport me to a place, especially one that is familiar. Nonetheless, she accomplished a couple things that I have to say made me want to read some of the other books in her Hawaii series, so it's not all bad. First, she made me like a detective story. It's not usually my thing (don't hate 'em, don't gravitate toward 'em either), but I found that I wanted to see if Ted was right (and if I was) about the robbery culprit. And that subplot not only made sense as a standalone plot, but it contributed to the furtherance of the main plot, as well. Now, to see if she can truly invoke Hawaii in the other books in the series.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Robert Scott

    Three novellas about Christmastime with people without the proper Christmas spirit. Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells by Donna Kauffman has a lady just returned from her home in London to take over a business left to her by her mother. She encounters an old crush. Bah Handsome by Jill Shalvis involves a B&B about to go under in the foothills of Colorado, the owner, a relative and an accountant. It's Hotter at Christmas by Helenkay Dimon takes on Kauai Hawaii where - SURPRISE - there is no snow and th Three novellas about Christmastime with people without the proper Christmas spirit. Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells by Donna Kauffman has a lady just returned from her home in London to take over a business left to her by her mother. She encounters an old crush. Bah Handsome by Jill Shalvis involves a B&B about to go under in the foothills of Colorado, the owner, a relative and an accountant. It's Hotter at Christmas by Helenkay Dimon takes on Kauai Hawaii where - SURPRISE - there is no snow and this lady is used to ski lodges, and other typical winter activities.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Becky Tatar

    This is only for the Jill Shalvis novella Kissing Santa Claus. After Tara finally gives her ex, Logan Perrish, his walking papers, he spends the next week withh Town Clerk , Sandy Jansen. But he doesn't stay, needing to get back to his job of being a world class race driver. And now it's Christmas. Suddenly Logan shows back up, and wants more than Sandy thought he wanted. This is only for the Jill Shalvis novella Kissing Santa Claus. After Tara finally gives her ex, Logan Perrish, his walking papers, he spends the next week withh Town Clerk , Sandy Jansen. But he doesn't stay, needing to get back to his job of being a world class race driver. And now it's Christmas. Suddenly Logan shows back up, and wants more than Sandy thought he wanted.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Cari Keck

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Definitely not my type of reading material. People don't fall in love that fast and I don't quite think men think that way. There were so many grammatical errors it made me cringe. The only reason I finished was because it was a part of my book battle. Definitely not my type of reading material. People don't fall in love that fast and I don't quite think men think that way. There were so many grammatical errors it made me cringe. The only reason I finished was because it was a part of my book battle.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Dorothy

    This book was just not my cup of tea. It is a combination of three stories that are mainly love stories which is ok. What I don't like is detail about the love making nor the cuss words in the book. An author can write a decent book without either one. This book was just not my cup of tea. It is a combination of three stories that are mainly love stories which is ok. What I don't like is detail about the love making nor the cuss words in the book. An author can write a decent book without either one.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Debbie M.

    First story was ok but couldn't get into either of the others. Stopped reading. First story was ok but couldn't get into either of the others. Stopped reading.

  19. 5 out of 5

    TinaMarie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Danny is sent to Hope to determine if she was going to default her loan. He likes her and wants to help but she doesn't trust him, but his actions prove his intent in the end. Danny is sent to Hope to determine if she was going to default her loan. He likes her and wants to help but she doesn't trust him, but his actions prove his intent in the end.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Janet Robel

    These are three cute holiday romances.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    A fun read from some of my favorite authors. Can't believe I had missed it! Always enjoy a good holiday read and adding a little sexy time always makes it better. A fun read from some of my favorite authors. Can't believe I had missed it! Always enjoy a good holiday read and adding a little sexy time always makes it better.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Phylisha Stone

    Fun read with three light good stories!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Amber Tillman

    Feels like Christmas If you love Christmas romance you need to read this. Chemistry that is so hot it burns up the pages!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sherry Wheeler

    3 quick reads to put you in the holiday spirit

  25. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    I am NOTORIOUSLY difficult to please when it comes to romance shorts but this one I liked

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rhonda Petersen

    I read Bah Handsome by Jill Shalvis

  27. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    Donna Kauffman Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells Holly hates the yuletide season more than ever since she inherited her mother’s Christmas novelty store, but her childhood pal Sean’s determined to warm her up - to Christmas and to him. When they uncover a diary concealing secrets involving both their families, this could be the Christmas that changes their lives forever... Jill Shalvis Bah Handsome! Behind on her bills, B&B owner Hope receives an unlikely guest - stranded solicitor Danny, who’s been threa Donna Kauffman Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells Holly hates the yuletide season more than ever since she inherited her mother’s Christmas novelty store, but her childhood pal Sean’s determined to warm her up - to Christmas and to him. When they uncover a diary concealing secrets involving both their families, this could be the Christmas that changes their lives forever... Jill Shalvis Bah Handsome! Behind on her bills, B&B owner Hope receives an unlikely guest - stranded solicitor Danny, who’s been threatening to put her out of business. Hope’s staff sees more fire than fight in the sparks that fly as they try and bring Hope and Danny together, but only a Christmas miracle can help these unlikely lovers see the light... HelenKay Dimon It's Hotter at Christmas Hawaii’s no paradise for Marissa, who, thanks to a series of unfortunate events, can’t seem to get away from the sand to enjoy her Christmas East Coast style - with plenty of snow and slush. But tall, dark, and serious police officer Ted’s about to give this bad Santa in heels a Mele Kalikimaka she’ll never forget... Heather's Notes I liked the first two stories "Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells" and "Bah Handsome". I did not care for "It's Hotter at Christmas". It was a little confusing, it is part of a series and may have been better if read in order. The characters were very one dimensional and I just didn't connect with them. Still with the other two not a bad anthology. I liked it overall.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Beverly Diehl

    I'm a fan of Jill Shalvis, have recently read and enjoyed Helenkay Dimon, so figured I had a two out of three chance of loving this anthology. Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells by Donna Kaufman Holly Berry Bennett, a late-in-life Christmas baby, has been surprised by her mother, who was crazy about all things Christmas, with the "gift" of her boutique Christmas store in small-town South Carolina. She's free to continue to operate it, or sell it, her choice. I simply didn't find Holly a compelling or pa I'm a fan of Jill Shalvis, have recently read and enjoyed Helenkay Dimon, so figured I had a two out of three chance of loving this anthology. Lock, Stock, and Jingle Bells by Donna Kaufman Holly Berry Bennett, a late-in-life Christmas baby, has been surprised by her mother, who was crazy about all things Christmas, with the "gift" of her boutique Christmas store in small-town South Carolina. She's free to continue to operate it, or sell it, her choice. I simply didn't find Holly a compelling or passionate character; more of a jellyfish, swept along by whatever tide. She paints, but has made a life for herself in London in an ad agency, which she doesn't love, doesn't hate. She doesn't WANT the store, but she doesn't want to work proactively at closing it and moving the stock, even though it is the middle of the Christmas season. She always had a mad crush on Sean Gallagher, who now owns the restaurant across the street, but it's not like she's going to even cross the street. Sean, on the other hand, is hot and sexy and SOOOO interested in Holly that he'll cross the street, 2-3 times a day, bringing her food and making speeches. He spends about three pages trying to convince her that he had a crush on her way back when, which I found totally unbelievable; sexy, experienced thirty-something guys don't MAKE long rambling high schoolish speeches like that. There's a side plot about an illegitimate heir who's not too closely related to Sean which adds nothing to the story. The sex scenes were well-written, but since I didn't feel emotionally invested in the characters, it was hard to have more than a clinical interest. Bah, Handsome! by Jill Shalvis is now also included in her "Merry and Bright" anthology. Since I really liked this story, I suggest going in that direction, instead of this collection. Holly O'Brien owns a struggling B & B in Colorado, which is CLOSE to turning the corner and making a profit, allowing her to pay back her Grinchly stepbrother, from whom she took a loan. But the Grinch has even sent his accountant, Danny Shaw, to make sure she pays up. Danny, sexy guy even with his glasses, finds his sympathies - and his libido - are strongly with Hope; she doesn't want to acknowledge it, since he represents the enemy. It's cute and funny and sexy, and there's mistletoe and snow and bears. It's Hotter at Christmas by Helenkay Dimon Ted Greene is a detective in Kauai, assigned to investigate robberies happening to a particular tourist, Marissa Brandt. Problem: he wants to boink her lights out. Problem solved: chief of police gives him a green light to go ahead, and DOESN'T take him off the investigation (would this really happen, even in a small town?). Ted is an appealing enough character, but I didn't get much about Marissa except that she was peeved enough to kick a TSA officer in the shins when he wouldn't let her board the plane without ID (cute? not so much). I got more personality from Ted's sister Nicki, the hotel manager. What I wanted was to see Marissa falling in love with Kauai, and Ted, not necessarily in that order, as well as Ted lusting for her, but I wasn't feeling it. Well-written sex scenes, but again, I wasn't invested, so meh. I hate to bah humbug any book, let alone a holiday one, but this is one I kept putting down and struggling to pick back up, except for the Shalvis story.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kezermezer

    I wish I could give this 2.5 stars, but I'll tip it up to three because of Shalvis' contribution and, to a lesser degree, Dimon's. "Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells" by Donna Kauffman It's with greatly conflicting emotions that Holly returns to her childhood hometown at Christmastime to figure out what she's going to do with the store her mother left her when her parents unexpectedly retired. And who should she meet up with but her childhood crush Sean, who runs his family's restaurant across the str I wish I could give this 2.5 stars, but I'll tip it up to three because of Shalvis' contribution and, to a lesser degree, Dimon's. "Lock, Stock and Jingle Bells" by Donna Kauffman It's with greatly conflicting emotions that Holly returns to her childhood hometown at Christmastime to figure out what she's going to do with the store her mother left her when her parents unexpectedly retired. And who should she meet up with but her childhood crush Sean, who runs his family's restaurant across the street. I appear to be in the minority here, but I didn't like this story at all. Underwhelming is the word that comes to mind. From the beginning, it failed to pull me in or make me feel invested. Holly wasn't terribly likable or relatable, Sean was decent enough but nothing beyond that, and the plot arc involving the discovery of an old diary and the secrets it contains seemed haphazardly put together and poorly integrated with the main romance. Maybe it pulled together better near the end, but I started skimming before then - a rarity for me. "Bah Handsome!" by Jill Shalvis Hope O'Brien is in a heck of a jam. In order to keep her bed-and-breakfast afloat, she's had to obtain a loan from her Grinchy stepbrother Edward, and the loan is about to come due. So one of the last people she wants to see on her doorstep is Danny Shaw, Edward's CPA. And sexy, sweet Danny is making himself more and more difficult to dislike... This is the best of the bunch. A sweet, sexy snippet of a story, with Shalvis' trademark humor, spunk, and steamy sex. It wasn't AWESOME, but it was quite good. "It's Hotter at Christmas" by HelenKay Dimon All Marissa Brandt wants this Christmas is to get home for a traditional snowy white Christmas. All Deputy Police Chief Ted Greene wants is to finally get her successfully on a plane out of Hawaii. But as events conspire to throw the two together, they may discover that they both want something entirely different after all... Meh. This was a so-so story. Decently paced, decent characters, decent action (aside from the underdeveloped mystery that didn't know what part it wanted to play in the story), decent sex scenes. In short, the whole thing was decent, but not fantastic.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn F.

    Anthology. 1. Lock, Stock & Jingle Bells by Donna Kauffman. Holly comes back to her hometown after her mother and father retire leaving her a Christmas theme store, inventory and all. She runs into Sean, the nice jock she had a crush on in high school, who happened to also have a unrequited crush on her. Now she has to decide whether to sell everything and go back to London where she had settled or stay and maybe start something with Sean. Very good, sweet, romantic story. **** 2. Bah, Handsome! b Anthology. 1. Lock, Stock & Jingle Bells by Donna Kauffman. Holly comes back to her hometown after her mother and father retire leaving her a Christmas theme store, inventory and all. She runs into Sean, the nice jock she had a crush on in high school, who happened to also have a unrequited crush on her. Now she has to decide whether to sell everything and go back to London where she had settled or stay and maybe start something with Sean. Very good, sweet, romantic story. **** 2. Bah, Handsome! by Jill Shalvis. Hope's B&B has a balloon payment due to her step-brother by Jan. 1. She asks her brother for an extension and he sends his CPA Danny to see if the business is viable after he takes it over when she misses her payment. Danny and Jill come to an understanding (wink, wink). Cute story. ***-1/2 3. It's Hotter at Christmas by HelenKay Dimon. Marissa first gets her wallet stolen while on a work assignment in Hawaii and when she goes to the airport without photo ID, the TSA guy has one of those "security guard wants to be a cop" attitudes and arrests her when she has all sorts of back-up ID. The local cop Ted keeps her from getting in more trouble when she kicks the TSA guy. Then when she goes back to the hotel, her luggage is ransacked. When he's called in again, he thinks she's either doing this herself or someone is setting her up. Also he's incredibly attracted to her. I liked the story, but the author must have had one of those word of the day calendars because she used obtuse 7 times that I counted. After awhile I started groaning when Marissa called Ted obtuse over and over again. Give me a break! The guy kept saying he didn't know what it meant but she didn't even give him a definition. If you took those scenes out, the rest of the book was good. *** So overall, I'd give this book 3.5 stars. It was better than a I thought it would be.

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