The Heart Of Christmas by Brenda Novak (Whiskey Creek #7)

The Heart Of Christmas by Brenda NovakAvailable: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Harlequin MIRA

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Pam

Eve Harmon has always enjoyed Christmas, but this year it reminds her of everything she doesn’t have. Almost all her friends are married now, and that’s what Eve wants, too. Love. A husband and kids of her own. But the B and B she manages, and even Whiskey Creek, the small Gold Country town where she was born and raised, suddenly seem…confining.

Eve’s worried that her future will simply be a reflection of her past. There’s no one in the area she could even imagine as a husband until a handsome stranger comes to town. Eve’s definitely attracted to him, and he seems to have the same reaction to her. But his darkly mysterious past could ruin Eve’s happily ever after just when it finally seems within reach. And just when she’s counting on the best Christmas of her life!

A pleasant story set during the Christmas season brings us back to the town of Whiskey Creek and we get to catch up on various inhabitants that many faithful readers love. Now it is Eve’s turn to find true love, albeit she takes a very different route with an unknown man that has many of her friends worried.

Eve Harmon has lived in Whiskey Creek all her life; her family has owned and managed Little Mary’s Bed and Breakfast for years. Eve is currently running the place and for the most part is happy with her life, but wonders if she is missing something. She has watched most of her friends get married and start families in the last few years and is distressed, she is not only facing her 35th birthday but it also looks like she will be spending another Christmas season single. On her birthday she decides to have a few drinks alone at the local bar and is surprised to wake up to a gorgeous stranger the next morning.

Rex McCready is hiding and although he spent an enjoyable night with Eve, he tells her nothing about himself, even his name. He is running from a past he can’t shake and is unsure of when he will be able to resume his own life again. He decides to stay in the area believing no one will find him and seems to gravitate toward Eve at every chance he gets, worrying both Eve and her close friends as they wonder what type of trouble he will bring to their lives.

I always look forward to the books that come out toward the holidays, I love the heartwarming stories that have all the fun and excitement of the season included. I am not sure what I missed in this book, but I did not get these warm feelings.

This is the seventh book in the Whiskey Creek series and there are many characters with back stories that appear. This is the first book I have read in this series so I had to read carefully to piece the relationships together, the author does a fairly good job of catching the reader up but there were a few times I wish I had read someone’s story. I did enjoy reading about the close relationships between the friends and enjoyed the small town feelings that are portrayed.

Eve is a likeable person; she has good friends and a wonderful family she adores, she just gets a little down on herself because she is still single while most of her friends have found someone to share their lives with, and although she does not admit it, I felt she was still upset with her ex-boyfriend Ted for marrying someone else last year, they have an interesting relationship. I also questioned her feelings for Rex, she is understandably angry in the morning especially when he refuses to give her his name but things get complicated soon after and she does not help things when stories change, and truths come out.

Rex is a conundrum, he is in hiding because his past has come back to haunt him but for some reason I could not bond with him and never felt the connection between Eve and him. Sometimes I think her biological clock was ticking so loud and was her decision maker.

The side stories were also unusual; Eve’s ex-boyfriend is writing a book about the B&B she owns, many believe it is haunted by a young girl that was murdered in the basement in 1814. They never found the murderer and Ted is doing research for the book, but the relationship between Eve and Ted is so complicated that I had a hard time with it. There is also the updated story about Cheyenne and Dylan and the baby they are having, I was amazed at what I was reading and had to look at past reviews to see if I was correct, wow that will be an emotional story one day.

I enjoyed the small amount of Christmas celebrations that surround the many relationship complications going on; I also like how Rex reconnects with his family and how the Whiskey Creek community rallies around him, true small town family and friends. This is a good read for those following this series as you get caught up with some favorite characters and there are some special holiday moments.

I give The Heart of Christmas by Brenda Novak 3 stars!

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