BLOG REVIEW: Christmas is Cancelled by Aurelia B Rowl

Her train ride being cancelled is just one of the things going wrong with the Christmas Eve of recently homeless and unemployed heroine. 
Her day is capped off her with her falling on the ground at the train station and having her old crush 31y.o. Hero, whom she last saw about 10 years, witness it. 
His invitation to his home turned into a chance to enact their long-held attraction to each other. 
But his unexplained reservations keep them from the very thing they both want. Her displeased brother’s unexpected arrival puts extra pressure on Hero. 
How much of his secrets are linked to her brother?  Will her brother succeed in keeping them away from each other again?

This novella was put together well and was smoothly-paced.  It was funny, sexy, dramatic, and sweet.  The characterization mixed with their heartfelt emotions and forbidden romance made it an engaging read. Heroine believed her love for her brother’s best friend Hero was unrequited. Something happened between her and Hero that that made her feel embarrassed and rejected and caused her to leave home. I wished we knew the details of what exactly happened between her and Hero 10 years ago to have a better understanding of and have some angst for what went wrong. It seemed to influence her transformation, where she dulled her appearance and dated emotionally-safe men.  

Hero couldn’t do anything about his love for heroine 10 years ago and now.

        --------------SPOILERS: Don’t read below if you don’t want to know the book’s details---------

Heroine’s brother made Hero promise that he wouldn’t romance his younger sister. Although Hero was his best friend, her brother partly believed the rumors that Hero was a murderer and, all in all, a bad boy.  I guess, her brother never asked Hero about the truth of the rumors but it influenced their later relationship. At the present time, Hero and her brother didn’t seem to be in contact with each other.  This should have made a difference in Hero’s romantic pursuit of heroine now but a major characteristic of Hero was his sense of honor.

The high-school rumors about Hero being a murderer was indirectly true. At age 15, the punch he delivered to his mother’s abusive boyfriend exposed the problematic vein problem he didn’t know he had and caused his immediate death. Being incarcerated in a juvenile facility for months, losing his mother to suicide, and being later acquitted of criminal murder charges incited him to improve his life. Being an honorable person was important to distinguish himself from his negative past. He had to honor his difficult promise to heroine’s brother to not touch her. So, even at the present time, he could not get himself to fully yield to their consensual attraction. Added to that was his secret and shameful past that he hasn’t told her about yet and was afraid will turn her away from him. He didn’t want to dishonor her choice to not be with him when she knew the full truth about him by having sex with her beforehand.

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Hero went on with his life after heroine left, making a success of his construction skills. He dated other women because he never thought heroine would ever be in his life again. None of them matched what he felt for and what he loved about heroine.  His annual Christmas journal gave us a peek of what his life was like without her. Seeing her again and spending time alone with her was bittersweet. It was particularly hard because heroine was so forthright about her desire for him yet he was anguished by how his secret past would affect her.

It only took them less than a week to meet again and begin their HEA(happy ever after). It was quick but not unbelievable. They had 10 years worth of separation, where they figured out what they really wanted and matured. So 6 more days is not much.  Their openness and deep love for each other  made for a sweet and romantic ending.

I recommend this book.
4-star

3 comments:

  1. Thank you! And I love the pictures you've used...but now for the big question: how many chocolate-covered macadamia nuts did you get through? o_O

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    1. Aurelia, just 2. Your book captivated me so I didn't need much chocolate help. Thanks for keeping me healthy! :D

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