Title: A Family for Christmas
Author: Jay Northcote
Length: 136 Pages (Kindle)
Category: Holiday Romance
At a Glance: A Family for Christmas has it all.
Reviewed By: Jules
Blurb: Zac never had a family of his own, but Rudy has enough to share.
Shy, inexperienced Rudy has a crush on Zac from the moment his new colleague walks through the door. On an office night out before Christmas, Rudy finds the courage to make a move, and they form a tentative bond. When he discovers Zac will be alone at Christmas, he invites Zac to come home with him.
Zac prefers to keep people at arm’s length. Yet when Rudy offers him a family Christmas it’s impossible to resist. With no parents of his own, Zac is pleasantly surprised to be welcomed by Rudy’s. The only drawback is that everyone assumes they’re a couple. Unwilling to disappoint Rudy’s mum and make Christmas awkward, they decide not to deny it.
It’s not a chore for Zac to pose as Rudy’s boyfriend, but the pretence makes him want things that scare him—things like a real relationship with Rudy. Zac’s suffered enough rejection in his life already and is afraid to risk his heart. If he can get over his past rejection and let Rudy inside his armour, he might get more for Christmas than he ever imagined.
Review: Rudy has been secretly crushing on Zac since he joined the team at Rainbow Futures, but hasn’t been able to drum up the courage to talk to him. Though, in Rudy’s defense, Zac has certainly done nothing to help break the ice—keeping to himself at the office, eating lunch alone at his desk, and ducking out at the end of the day. But, when their boss strongly suggests that Zac make it out with the crew for a pre-holiday get-together, he decides to make an appearance. Once the tequila comes out, though, all bets are off. Zac can no longer ignore Rudy’s cuteness or shy advances, nor, as it turns out, the invitation to spend Christmas with Rudy’s family.
Liquid courage may have nudged open the door at the start of the book, but what happens in the pages that follow is pure Christmas romance magic. As the story progresses, Zac’s walls slowly start to come down; though, we do learn that those walls were there for a reason. Zac has had a rough go of it, and as a result, is terrified to allow himself to get close to anyone. At first he tries to be all standoffish, too scared to tell Rudy about his past, but soon he can’t deny that he badly wants everything Rudy has to offer.
“He felt ashamed, poor in the face of the richness that was Rudy’s life, which had nothing to do with money or material things. It was about being wanted and loved unconditionally. The world had taught Zac he didn’t deserve that.”
Rudy is such a massive sweetheart. I loved him to bits, and adored his family as well. Everything about his family and family home screamed picture-perfect-Christmas. The author did an incredible job of bringing the English country Christmas charm to life. The descriptions of the house, places, and activities were so marvelous. Rudy’s family definitely made it easy to see how Rudy turned out to be such a good egg. The whole lot of them were witty, generous and kind.
But, let’s get away from the wholesome for a moment, and talk about the chemistry between these guys…Wow. They were so great together. Adorable, shy and dorky, sure…But, give them a dark closet to hide in during an innocent game of Sardines? I swear they almost burned the place down. If you don’t pick this one up for the lovely Christmas charm, then pick it up for that scene. Suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuper sexy and fun.
I need to read more Jay Northcote. I don’t even care that he accidentally did fake boyfriends again for this year’s Christmas story! This one was even better, so roll with it I say! But, seriously, A Family for Christmas has it all. Get your fire going, maybe a kitty in your lap (there are so many sweet cats in the book, it will make you want one with you), and some tea or cocoa, and dig into this one. So, so cute and enjoyable.
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