Not too long ago I read Kayla Tirrell’s trilogy. I loved those and happened to notice she was offering the opportunity to read the book she wrote with Daphne James Huff and M.F. Lorson. This book has three short stories and is the perfect way to start off the holiday season.
This cover is so sweet!! A perfect winter scene that fits all of these stories.
Plot & Characters
Seeing how these stories are pretty short, I will do both of these things together.
Dirty Santa – Kayla Tirrell
Jordin is a popular teenager and is the only one out of her group of friends who is leaving Florida to go to college. Her friends don’t get why she was hanging around with Ben after getting Prom Queen and her popular boyfriend Isaac Prom King. The King was puking in the bathroom. Seven months later she is backin Florida for Christmas and plans on staying a little longer than planned. She runs into Ben who has grown up in the few months she was away. Their parents are both partners in a company, so they meet at the Christmas party and play Dirty Santa. They have always been able to guess what gift the other brought. This is all a bit more special and it may just turn out to be a little more than just a simple gift. It may be something they need even more.
This definitely wasn’t a dirty party, haha. The idea that everyone buys a gift and the number you get depends on the present you choose to unwrap or keep, is actually pretty fun. Jordin isn’t having an easy time and I like that she doesn’t not talk to someone that isn’t ‘popular’ according to her friends. How even after all those years, Jordin and Ben still know the other pretty well. There are way too many stereotypes out there. This was a good story to start off with. Friends come in all shapes and sizes.
The Christ Redeemer Christmas Spectacular – Daphne James Huff
In this story, we meet Jamie who isn’t having the easiest time at the moment. She is working three jobs to help support her mom, because she isn’t doing well since her father passed. At the smoothie bar she works at a guy she thinks is hot comes in everyday and she never dares to talk to him. One day, he asks about a flyer. He is helping his grandmother with a charity show at the church before Christmas. She is moving, so wants it to be the best she has done. Jamie doing drama in high school and in college while she was there briefly volunteers to help. The downside, Austin has a girlfriend. Between helping Austin and working her jobs, she still has a hard time. Austin and his girlfriend have issues, but does that mean they can be something? Can Jamie open up her heart to someone who may be there for only a short time?
“Hi, you’re the hottest guy I’ve ever seen, please have babies with me?”
I can’t imagine what Jamie is going through. Losing a parent and trying to do everything to keep paying the bills while her mother is adjusting to the life without a husband. The fact that her sister left and isn’t helping out made me feel really bad for her. The light of her day was Austin, who came to the smoothie place she works everyday. She is way too shy to talk, but helping with the charity show is her way in. I loved her friend Miranda who doesn’t care when Jamie needs her, but is always there. We all need friends like that. I love how in the end she was able to face some emotions and let herself start healing. Even though this story is pretty serious there are some fun moments with a lot of humor.
“I looked life an elf on a naughty list. The very naughty list.”
The Night Sale – M.F. Lorson
Elizabeth comes home from college for the holidays. She lives in the small town of Smockville and isn’t pleased with some of the changes. A large line of supermarkets has come to the town causing the small businesses to close. Her parents run a Christmas Tree lot that is feeling the arrival of this store and its fake Christmas Trees. This is more hurtful when the boy she almost kissed is apart of the family who brought the store to town. Everyone thinks he hurt her, but in truth it was she that hurt him. She’s become braver, but can she save the Christmas Tree lot with her plans and find love as well?
I love the idea of small towns during Christmas time. The same traditions and the cozy traditions. I can only imagine how horrible it is to come home after a couple months of college and see everything change. Especially when it is changing your own family’s situation. A few months of college has made her more confident and I like how it shows how much she’s grown with her new roommate. This story also shows us what Christmas is all about: being together and enjoying the day with loved ones. I loved how this small town came together to help the Christmas Tree farm try and make it to the next year. That really warmed my heart.
These stories gave me the warm and fuzzy feelings I love about this time of year. My only complaint about this book is that the stories are too short. I would love to read more about these characters and their Christmas adventures!