Author: Rachel L. Demeter
Publisher: Black Lyon Publishing, LLC
Release Date: November 1, 2015
Buy Link: Amazon | Amazon UK
I received an ARC of this book. All opinions are my own.
"Christmas, my child, is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it's Christmas." - Dale Evans
A week before Christmas, Jeseca Reed sets off for Blue River, Oregon - her childhood home and a vault of tender memories. However, fate takes an unexpected turn when she's left stranded in the mountains' vast, untamed wilderness. Desperate and alone, she seeks shelter at a cottage and finds herself in the arms of a mysterious stranger.
Dr. David Drake was once a renowned cardiovascular surgeon. But a devastating tragedy has left him scarred both inside and out, unable to use his hands to operate again. For the past five years, his Blue River cottage has been his sole escape - a safe haven where he can shut out the world, bury himself in his grief, and reunite with his son's memory.
Together they are summer and winter. Fire and ice. And yet a poignant connection forms between them. Jeseca thaws David's heart with the first embers of a romance hot enough to melt snow. But before David and Jeseca can fully embrace each other, they must wade through darkness and confront the ghosts of their pasts ...
You know when you receive something you didn't ask for, your first instinct is to say no. But then, you stop and consider it, and eventually you accept it. That was my experience with this book. If you regularly read this blog, you know I don't accept books for review, but there was something about this book that called to me. I mean, it's about Christmas. Who doesn't want to read about love and Christmas?!
Anyway, from the very beginning of this book, there was a weird sensation that I experienced. When Jeseca started looking around the room she woke up in and she felt chills, I felt the exact same chills. It was so weird! That's a good indication that the author did a great job with writing this book.
Also, I love that the author incorporated anxiety in the book, but didn't use the actual word when Dr. Drake had an anxiety attack. Kudos number two for the author.
To be honest, when I started reading this, I was thinking of another book I previously read with a similar premise. I thought, "oh, this is going to be just like that book." A couple chapters in and I was proven completely wrong. This book had depth and character despite the short length.
I read it way into the night and I kept reading when I woke up the next day instead of running some errands. That's how good the book was.
I really admired Jeseca's personality. Despite the tragedy she experienced, she was carefree and open. She melted Dr. Drake's defenses and made her way into his home (literally and figuratively).
Dr. Drake: "Nope. No way. No dancing. Not today. Not ever."
Jeseca: "Oh, come on! Why not? It'll be fun!"
Dr: Drake: "Because I'm absolutely terrible at it."
Jeseca: "Believe me. There's no way you're any worse than I am."
"Do ... do you like it?" she asked, gesturing toward the room.
Do I like it? he thought, bemused. The Christmas music wafted from the hallway and swelled the walls as he struggled to form the proper words. His emotions were in a violent tangle, and he found it impossible to speak. He glanced down and examined Jeseca's elegant writing---and then the words finally emerged.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, was exactly how I felt about the book. Dr. Drake said it "perfectly." :)