For Every Love: Christmastime

For Every Love Christmas Banner

gift croppedgift croppedgift cropped

With the Christmas season being my absolute favorite time of year, I had to include it in my contemporary romances.

A horse-drawn carriage ride through Christmas-lit downtown streets. A Christmas food and gift festival. A family (and friends! 😉 ) Christmas movie night. “Christmas jams” to dance to at a romantic wedding reception.

Find a bunch of holiday happenings in these sweet romances of friendship, laughter and pain, and the miracle of second chances.
For Every Love: Three Romantic Reads.

gift croppedgift croppedgift cropped

Pick and click a store below to get a copy of For Every Love

Kindle | Nook | Apple | Kobo
Smashwords | Scribd
Bookshop paperback

Amazon paperback

Add Book to Goodreads

For Every Love Christmas Square

Line New Blue

Meet Nadine C. Keels

 

The Christmas Chronicles (2018)

Christmas Films Red

Film reviews are subjective. I tend to rate films not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.

Line New Red

The Christmas Chronicles (2018)
Rated TV-PG

Description (from Netflix): After accidentally crashing Santa’s sleigh, a brother and sister pull an all-nighter to save Christmas with a savvy, straight-talking St. Nick.

My thoughts: So, no, this adventurous comedy for the family isn’t super-squeaky holiday corn. The story mixes in morsels to take seriously, and it’s got quality acting. Young Kate is sharp and spunky, and her older brother Teddy is believably jerky but with a heart still in there. St. Nick’s no total cornball here either.

Now, as with other contemporary movies that go about explaining how the whole magical Santa thing really works, this flick adds its share of unexpected bits and twists—though only a twist or two was unexpected for me. I could guess the rest. Perhaps ever since the novelty of seeing The Santa Clause as a child, I’m no longer surprised by most “surprising” details on Santa, the North Pole, elves, etc. Also, while I had a literal smile on my face during some parts, I can’t say the picture’s punchlines were punchy or unpredictable enough for me to laugh.

Plus, to be quite honest, I found Santa’s “cute” little elves to be rather creepy and hard to watch, like the feeling you might get by seeing clusters of insects scuttling around. (Sorry about that. 😀 )

Nevertheless, I still quite enjoyed this Christmas adventure overall.

__________

Meet Nadine C. Keels

Go to Nadine's Books

Pick up a book of hope and inspiration today

Run, Run by Rachel Kovaciny

Christmas Bluish Present

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.

4 Stars New Light Blue

Run Run Cover 1400px highRun, Run by Rachel Kovaciny

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

Levi Dalton and his young siblings and cousins have a special Christmas present in mind for the uncle who’s taking care of them all. But a little thief taking off with their basket of gingerbread could ruin Levi’s plans in Run, Run by author Rachel Kovaciny.

So, is it okay that I heard Chuck Berry singing “run, run, Rudolph!” in the back of my head during most of this reimagining of “The Gingerbread Man”? Heeheehee…

This short story is a sequel to One Bad Apple in the Once Upon a Western series of fairy tale retellings. It includes some details that come together in the preceding book, but I wouldn’t say those details really spoil anything if you’re new to the series, especially if you know the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

In all, I found this quick holiday read as delightful as its charming and comfy-kind-of-delicious cover. A satisfying snack with an uplifting message.

____________

Here’s my review of another Once Upon a Western short, No Match for a Good Story.

No Match for a Good Story

Line New Blue

Meet Nadine C. Keels

Go to Nadine's Books

Pick up a book of hope and inspiration today

The Cricket on the Hearth by Charles Dickens

Christmas Creamy Present

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.

4 Stars New Cream

The Cricket on the Hearth 1

Fan art by Nadine C. Keels: not an official book cover

The Cricket on the Hearth by Charles Dickens

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When all is well in John and Dot Peerybingle’s happy home, the cricket chirps away. When something’s amiss, the cricket goes silent. Now this sudden silence in the Peerybingles’ lives signals a staggering turn of events coming to them and to a few of their neighbors in The Cricket on the Hearth by author Charles Dickens.

Well! I realize this classic novella has been treated as a Christmas tale since its original publication. While the story itself doesn’t really have anything to do with Christmas, I ate up this warm and whimsical Fairy Tale of Home as I would a holiday read.

It’s clever and fussy in style, abundantly old-fashioned, and peppered with caricatural characters. There’s a jaunty bounce to much of it (for instance, is not the surname “Peerybingle” as jolly and over-the-top as “Fezziwig,” that jolly good surname in A Christmas Carol?) and the humor is plenty chuckle-worthy.

It took some time before I caught on to the plot, but I was all right with waiting—what with a personified kettle and the adorable Boxer bounding and barking about and all. But I became more interested as the plot really kicked in, along with the fantastical/magical aspects of this homey story that speaks on family and friends, truth and trust.

Oh, it isn’t on the same level as the renowned Carol, but this tale is worth a read for fans of Dickens.

Line New Cream

Meet Nadine C. Keels

Go to Nadine's Books

Pick up a book of hope and inspiration today

Kind by Kellyn Roth

Christmas Silver Present

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.

3 Stars New Silver

KindKind: a Christmas short story of post-WWII Munich by Kellyn Roth

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

Lt. Neil Hudson would much rather be back home in Arizona for Christmas. But he’s stuck in Germany in the aftermath of the Second World War, finding little reason to celebrate in Kind by author Kellyn Roth.

I’m a huge fan of historical ChristFic, and I love discovering uplifting Christmas stories, especially ones that aren’t romances. (Nothing against holiday romances, of course, but I don’t really have to “discover” them because they’re so common and visible.)

It’d be easy to make a short story like this so flat or cheesy as not to be interesting, but I didn’t find that to be the case here. Granted, some moments in the first half are a little redundant, and the author “tells” the reader some simple information that could instead be “shown” through the characters or otherwise left unsaid, trusting the reader’s discernment. Also, whether or not a person is a Christian doesn’t determine whether or not that person makes questionable choices. Everybody makes choices that somebody would find questionable.

Even so, I quite enjoyed this shaft of holiday light, a short and sweet read for fans of war-related fiction.

Silver Line New

Meet Nadine C. Keels

Go to Nadine's Books

Pick up a book of hope and inspiration today