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To college student, Katie Brandt, ‘Home for the Holidays’ sounds like hell. When her parents separated, their holiday traditions shattered like a dropped ornament. What could be worse than celebrating Christmas with her suddenly single mom and mom’s new boyfriend?
Alex Walker, an engaged 20-year-old, dreads going home for his own reasons. He has a daunting task ahead of him and wishes he could skip the holidays altogether. So when a friend of a friend needs a ride north, Alex finds that having beautiful Katie seated by his side proves to be just the distraction he needs.
A simple ride home for Christmas turns into a nightmare when light snow rages into a full-scale blizzard. Katie and Alex find themselves stranded, and a vacant cabin becomes a haven from the storm. Under different circumstances, time alone with Alex would be the ultimate Christmas gift, but Katie knows Alex is engaged and she must hide her growing attraction.
However, Alex harbors a secret that just might change this holiday from the worst Christmas ever, to the best.
Not a Romance Fan
Maybe romance books just aren’t for me. Romance novellas even less so. Or I just haven’t found the kind that makes me go all soft inside. While I didn’t launch into eye rolls as I had feared, sadly, I didn’t really feel Snowed Over either.
If I’m going to read some love story, I want to walk away from the book believing that whoever ends up together will stay together. I want to walk away with renewed hope of true love. Idealistic? Definitely. All these romance books describe some fantastical love which for many doesn’t ever happen in real life anyway. Not like that. So I don’t think it’s too much to ask that for all the unlikely love people find, that that love might also very believable last beyond the pages of all these books.
Liking Romance even Less
Novellas, being much shorter, obviously need to develop much faster, so some details have got to give. Yet even without these details, time frames can be adjusted to combat instalove. I’m not usually one to rant about it, and neither do I refer much to this term instalove but for all intents and purposes, it applies extremely well to Snowed Over and that didn’t sit well with me. View Spoiler »What makes it even worse here is that this instalove involves an engaged guy and someone other than his fiancée. To her credit, she doesn’t expect anything to happen between her and him but she still adopts an a-girl-can-dream attitude. Not cool. « Hide Spoiler
Putting aside my gripes, the discovery that I’m not partial towards romance novellas and annoyance towards instalove, there were things I did like.
Snowed Over is narrated from the third-person perspective, so both Katie and Alex were equally developed as characters. I felt that I got to know them both, especially during their time stuck in the blizzard. This also prevented excessive whining to take over, seeing how neither was looking forward to the holidays with their families.
Also, I imagine that being constrained with a word limit is really tough, so I do have a lot of respect for Angie Stanton. Snowed Over might be suitable for those looking for New Adult holiday reads without excessive sexual references (or rather, none that I can remember), and for those who are simply looking for a feel-good holiday romance because in the end, things do sort of work out in Katie’s and Alex’s favours.
I Was the Wrong Audience
In the end, I guess Snowed Over was not for me largely because it is a romance novella. I couldn’t find a whole lot of appreciation for it, although I didn’t think it was bad either. It is however one I can see readers snuggle up with in bed on a cold morning. Plus, the cover is one I wouldn’t mind looking at if it were parked on my nightstand.
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