Compilation of 5 Historical Romance stories, all with the magic of Christmas. * A Family Christmas: It was an arranged marriage, he agreed to it to make his father happy, she agreed to help her parents pay off the bills. Edwin and Elizabeth Chambers hosted the family Christmas, the holiday spirit might be enough to unite this couple that never really came together before. * Star of Bethlehem: A ring that holds the heart of Allan and Estelle, the Earl and Countess of Lisle, but they didn’t realize it until a dirty little chimney sweeps climber, Nicky, found the broken ring an took it. Would the return of the ring be enough to bring the estranged couple together, with the help of the holiday spirit. * The Best Gift: Getting stuck with his niece for the holiday, Warren Nash, Viscount of Buckley, needed help and Jane Craggs, the teacher, would be just the type. Arriving at his home with the girl and her teacher in tow and finding one more left on his doorstep had the Lord of the manor at a loss as to how to deal with the holiday. “Did one ever pass the age of dreams?” * Playing House: Past hurts effect Stephen West, the Marques of Bedford, when a childhood friend, Lilas Angove, asks for a favor for her family. Granting her request and then his own daughters requests, continues to bring both families together to make a special holiday for all. * No Room at the Inn: Stranded by a rainstorm at an uncomfortable Inn, many people come together, some will become friends, some will be more. All will be able to see the true meaning of Christmas for the first time in many years, if they ever really understood it at all.
Short stories make characters harder to form, but in this group, Mary Balogh has created many characters that have great qualities. As usual with short stories, I wish it had lasted longer, some of the stories moved too quickly, but these stories were a nice change of pace and a good read.
Dec 8, 2008