Friday, December 19, 2014

Aloha to Robyn Neeley and CHRISTMAS DINNER - Book review and giveaway


News anchor Amanda Turner used to love everything about the holidays—the eggnog sugar cookies, the tacky family Christmas sweaters, and a lawn decorated with so many multi-colored lights that 747s could land safely. That is until her boyfriend dumped her in front of the whole town on Christmas Eve. Humiliated, she fled her small town to start a new life. Two years later, she’s finally ready to return to the scene of the emotional crime, until she learns that her ex is engaged. Now, the only thing worse than going home is going home single.

Tate Ryan, her tall, dark, and arrogant co-anchor, offers to pose as her boyfriend. There’s one problem, though: they barely like each other, and he recently scooped her story on live TV. But she needs a ride home and a boyfriend fast, so Tate will have to do.

As she watches Tate interact with her family and town residents, fully embracing the spirit of the holiday season, she starts to see his kindhearted side. She can’t help but wonder if she was wrong about him. Perhaps he isn’t the conniving co-worker that she once thought. And her new feelings for him would definitely put her on the naughty list.

Tate has his own agenda for the weekend that includes telling Amanda he’s been in love with her since the first time they met. He’s ready to reveal all during Christmas dinner but fate has other plans.

Sensuality Level: Behind Closed Doors

Christmas Tree inside Ali'iolani Hale
Justice Building - Honolulu

Christmas, children, is not a date. It is a state of mind. - Mary Ellen Chase

I received CHRISTMAS DINNER inside a beautiful red purse from Robyn Neeley in support of the Maryland Romance Writers (MRW) auction.   I was bidding on the purse ... and CHRISTMAS DINNER was the icing on the cake.

Amanda Turner has been bitter about the holidays for the past two years after her childhood friend-turned-boyfriend dumped her on Christmas Eve.   She fled her update NY hometown, where her family grew Christmas trees, for her perfect job in North Carolina.  Amanda dislikes her co-anchor, Tate Ryan, thinking he is a scene stealing and skirt chasing rogue.  After a series of unfortunate events, she accepts his offer to accompany her home just as her sister is about to give birth over the holidays.   Amanda fights her attraction to Tate while still trying to make her ex-boyfriend jealous.

Amanda may loathe the holidays, but Tate loves the season because of the generous family - Amanda's - who touched his life when he was a teen.  He has been in love with Amanda since then, trying to find a way to connect with her.   Once Amanda is home, wearing her family's tacky sweater, she realizes that holidays ... and even Tate ... aren't so bad after all.

Neeley delivers a Scrooge inspired holiday romance that pulls at the heart.   Just as I was ready for the romance to wrap up ... Neeley throws in a twist.  You'll have to read the book to find out how it all comes together.

Recommended read for fans of fated lovers and holiday themes.

I am giving away my copy of CHRISTMAS DINNER plus a book choice from my convention stash to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Do you have a tacky holiday sweater?  

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, December 27, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, December 28.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City


  1. It's summer here for Christmas so no tacky sweater. I don't even have a tacky T-shirt for the season.

  2. I did have one but I got rid of it when we moved to a smaller place recently.

  3. No tacky holiday sweater for me either. However, many years ago, I did buy my Hubby, son, my Dad and my brother all the same holiday sweater for Christmas. I've got a pic of them somewhere in one of my many albums.

    I don't really read contemporary romance, but this excerpt has really caught my eye.

    Merry Christmas to everybody.

  4. I don't have a sweater anymore, but I have a couple tacky Christmas vests. It's too hot here to wear the sweaters most years. :-)

  5. Yes, I got one when for when I helped out at the children parties at our local American Legion.

  6. well, I didn't think they were tackly when I bought them (many years ago), but my niece raises her eyebrow when I wear any of them

  7. I do not, but I definitely need to get one *Grin*

  8. I do! It has a Christmas tree and a dog on it. I bought it last year when I walked in the ugly Christmas sweater walk for charity.

  9. Sounds like an enjoyable read. I have 2 Christmas sweaters but really not tacky.

  10. I have one Christmas sweater. It's lime green with a darker green christmas tree in the middle of it. I don't think it's as bad as some of the others I've seen. lol