Author: Bru Baker
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Catt Ford
Rating: 3.75 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 12/01/2015
Length: Novella (~ 15K-50K)
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction, M/M Romance, Romance, Winter Holiday
Carson is a California transplant settling into life in the Windy City. On his first Christmas away from home, he assures his worried family he’ll be having a real Christmas dinner.
Recent culinary school graduate Tom Stockton earns some extra money giving out cooking advice at the Talk Turkey hotline. Tom’s honeyed voice and sharp sense of humor are attractive to the lonely Carson, and Carson finds reasons to call the hotline again and again. But on Christmas Eve, Carson’s call is less playful and more panicked with the big meal looming. Carson is just looking for advice, but Tom has a surprise in store that might lead to much more.
A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Advent Calendar package “Sleigh Ride”.
I’m sorry-not sorry but I have to do it, I have to use the word: cute. Cute! The way this story begins is cute. And sweet. And honest… kinda. 😉 Also, “Hungry Man dinner” mention FTW!
Carson is also sweet, has just recently moved to Chi-town from Cali, is having a rough time finding his place, loves and has a good relationship with his family back west and is missing them at Christmastime. He’s our narrator for this story and he’s pretty dern good at it.
Tom seems nice, too, if a little brusque in his humor and some reactions to Carson during some of their conversations. This trait might fit his personality but we’re not given much to go on regarding that, or his history, or even his current situation. It caused me to do the head tilt a few times, his comments feeling a bit off. I don’t think that was the author’s intent, as it feels out of sync with everything else about the story, but there ya have it. Either way, he likes Carson and Carson digs him right back, but we would have benefitted from a bit more about him to close the circuit between the two of them.
My declaration about the “cute” maintained its hold throughout, adding to the almost chaste nature of this holiday bite-sized snack. Don’t get me wrong, there’s some chemistry twixt Carson and Tom and they show each other some electrified affection, but the focus of this story is Carson’s attempts to adjust to Chicago life and the surprise that is Tom.
Baker’s writing is smooth, if not especially unique in flavor or tone, and I sailed through reading this story with ease. In other words: this is the perfect Xmas pre-dinner mint. 😉
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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