The holidays have never been her thing. But Christmas in Rose Bend has more than one surprise in store…
Grieving ER nurse Nessa Hunt is on a road trip with her sullen teen half sister, Ivy, and still reeling from her mother’s deathbed confession: Nessa’s dad wasn’t really her dad. Seeking answers, they arrive in Rose Bend to find a small town teeming with the kind of Christmas cheer Nessa usually avoids. But then she meets the innkeeper’s ruggedly sexy son, Wolfgang Dennison.
Wolf’s big, boisterous family is like a picture-perfect holiday card. Nessa has too much weighing on her to feel like she fits—even though the heat between her and Wolf is undeniable. And the merriment bringing an overdue smile to Ivy’s face is almost enough to make Nessa believe in the Christmas spirit. But with all her parental baggage, including lingering questions about her birth father, is there room in Nessa’s life for happy holidays and happily-ever-after?
Nessa and Wolf are such wonderfully complex characters. I loved them together. Their chemistry is off the charts (love those steamy scenes) but they also have moments of such tenderness. One of the things I most enjoyed about their journey was how well they communicated, even - maybe especially - when it came to the hard stuff. And there is plenty of hard stuff to overcome. Simone has surrounded them with a secondary cast of characters who all bring something to the table. Ivy, Nessa's moody, 12-year-old half-sister, is a pivotal character who is especially important to the overall story. I very much enjoyed her evolving relationship with both Wolf and Nessa.
I highly recommend adding Christmas in Rose Bend to your reading schedule. The steamy romance, snappy banter, heart-tugging emotion, grieving heroine who’s just about reached the end of her rope, and hero many of us would like to find under our Christmas tree this year, all wrapped up in a big red emotional bow courtesy of Naima Simone's exquisite writing, make this one a keeper.
CW: Death of parents - Death of best friend - Military death - Panic attacks