Christmas With You (Due South Book 4) by Tracey Alvarez
Release Day Event
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: December 5th, 2014
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions
She’s a Holiday Grinch…
Carly Gatlin doesn’t want to spend another Christmas alone. With her beloved father gone, she’s desperate to be part of a family—so she’s spending the holidays with her step-brothers on Stewart Island. But even with sand, sun, and not a snowflake in sight, everything reminds her of what she’s lost. So no tree trimming, cookie baking, or kisses under the mistletoe for her, thanks. Especially not from Due South’s sexy bartender, Kip.
He’s a too-hot-for-his-Santa-suit killjoy...
Kip Sullivan’s moved hundreds of miles away from his family who’d like to see him married off before his next birthday—on Christmas Eve. Then ten days before the big event, his meddling relatives arrive en masse, and dear God, they’re planning to stay. With match-makers breathing down his neck, it’s becoming harder to ignore the temptation to unwrap Carly like a present under the tree.
The Kiwi barbecue isn't the only thing sizzling this summer...
Kip agrees to help make Carly’s first New Zealand Christmas special. He’s got five holiday missions to complete—one involving a frisky fake reindeer—before he hopes to claim a mistletoe kiss…and maybe even Carly’s heart.
Christmas just isn’t Christmas without this spicy yet sweet Due South novella.
Tracey Alvarez lives in the Coolest Little Capital in the World (a.k.a Wellington, New Zealand) where she’s yet to be buried under her to-be-read book pile by Wellington’s infamous wind—her Kindle’s a lifesaver! Married to a wonderfully supportive IT guy, she has two teens who would love to be surgically linked to their electronic devices.
Fuelled by copious amounts of coffee, she’s the author of contemporary romantic fiction set predominantly in New Zealand. Small-towns, close communities, and families are a big part of the heart-warming stories she writes. Oh, and hot, down-to-earth heroes—Kiwi men, in other words.
When she’s not writing, thinking about writing, or procrastinating about writing, Tracey can be found reading sexy books of all romance genres, nibbling on smuggled chocolate bars, or bribing her kids to take over the housework.
She stepped under the shade of the first huge pohutukawa, blinking as her eyes struggled to adapt.
“Concentrate, zoomie,” she whispered. Her fingers fumbled up the grooved handle to find the trigger. “You got this.”
“Not this time, sweetheart.”
A strong arm wrapped around her body, pinning her arms helplessly to her side. Plastic pressed to the throbbing vein in her throat. Water seeped out of the gun and dripped down her neck. The shivers returned with a vengeance, but this time, they had nothing to do with chilly water and everything to do with the man pressed full length against her.
Warm breath puffed against her ear, and the cradle of his hips butted into her bottom. “Drop your weapon.”
Kip may as well have said, “Drop your panties.” His deep, rough voice affected her the same way.
Never surrender your weapon, zoomie.
Her throat seized, her mouth parched to sticky dryness. “No.”
Plastic squeaked, and more water oozed out of the gun, trickling down her overheated skin. The strong fingers wrapped around her upper arm flexed, not tight enough to hurt, just enough for her to know she couldn’t break free without a struggle—and another soaking.
“Resistance is futile.” Something soft and warm brushed over her earlobe, continued with butterfly lightness down the column of her throat to the very spot where her vein leaped under the skin. “I have you right where I want you. So drop it. I win.”
Her knees filled with wibbly-wobbly Jell-O, and her fingers on the gun handle had all the strength of mini sponge cakes. She was a sweet, hot mess from him grabbing her and breathing on her neck? Double-dammit. She’d underestimated the enemy’s skills at tactical engagement.
If you, like me, didn’t think sexy was an adjective you’d ever use when referring to Santa Claus, get ready to be proven wrong. In the latest chapter in the Due South Series, Christmas with you, Santa is a twenty-seven-year-old Kiwi hunk with brown hair and blue eyes—not exactly the image I’ve had in mind all my life.
I’ve loved all the books in the Due South Series so far, and this one’s no exception—especially since I love Christmas stories. Well, this is not your usual white Christmas story, mainly because it’s summer in New Zealand, but it does get you in the mood for Christmas, with all the decorations, the tree trimming and Michael Bublé’s Christmas songs playing (and driving Carly nuts—that was not nice of you, Tracey! Michael Bublé is my favorite singer and I love his Christmas CD which, by the way, has been playing on a loop for days now).
Anyway, back to the story. If you’ve read any of the books in the series, you already know that each book is about a different couple although, being this a small village with a tight-knit community, all the characters and couples from the previous books usually appear one way or another in every book, which is something I totally love about this series.
My first love, West, will always remain the best hero Tracey created and the dearest to my heart, but with every book he gets some fine competition and Kip Sullivan was no exception.
He’s handsome (no surprise there, since all male characters in Tracey’s books are hunks—which makes me want to pack up and move to New Zealand. Before I started reading Tracey’s books I used to think that all Kiwi men were hobbit-like but Tracey suddenly made the other end of the world a very interesting place to visit. LOL!) Anyway, Kip is not only handsome. He’s also a well-rounded character, who has his rough edges (when it comes to his family and to trusting a woman to be his forever) that make him so much more likeable as a hero. Although he’s a little reluctant to fall for Carly at first, when he understands there’s more than just physical attraction, he’s ready to change his ways to be the one Carly needs. There is a lot of character development as far as he’s concerned, and I really liked that. While at first, when his family shows up uninvited for Christmas, he came across a little like a stubborn ex-farmer who wanted his family to leave him alone, but as the story progresses, he realizes he should probably pull down the walls and start seeing things from a different perspective.
Carly is super cute and funny. I loved how she was all Grinch-ish at first, especially in the first scene when she walks into Due South and Michael Bublè’s song is playing. Having lost my dad too, I could totally share her feelings when she thought about him not being able to spend Christmas with her, and it tugged at my heartstrings. I wanted to jump into the book and gave her a big hug. I loved seeing how she blended into the Sullivan’s family and how much she wanted West to consider her his sister, and not only someone to keep at arm’s length. Needless to say, I L.O.V.E.D. West going all big brother on her when he discovered Kip was more than friends with her.
Kip’s family is hilarious. His big sisters were such fun to read about and were great side characters. I’m wondering if we’ll ever get a series about them, I think they’d have some nice stories to tell (maybe an idea there, Tracey? *winks*).
If you’ve read the other books in the series, you know that Tracey’s books are a little sexy and this Christmas novella is no exception. There are some rather hot scenes (definitely not a Christmas book you’d read to your children at bedtime!) which involve a rather sexy Kiwi Santa… I promise you, you’ll never look at a Santa Claus outside a mall the same after you’ve read this! :)
All books in the Due South Series can work as a standalone, this one even more than the others because it’s about two characters who’ve always been rather on the side in the other books, so you don’t actually have to have read the other books in order to enjoy this one. Even though I’m betting that if you read this, you’ll go check out all the other books too because you’ll fall in love with Stewart Island and its adorable (and super hot!) inhabitants.
Whether you’re a Grinch or a Christmas freak who starts trimming the tree more or less when the first leaves turns yellow, you’ll love this romantic, funny and sexy novella. All year round.