The Not So Nice List
A Christmas Novella
by Sally Kilpatrick
Release Date: November 1, 2022
Reviewed by PJ
Marketing exec Cole Frost needs a win. And he can finally get a big one if he can finally close the endorsement deal he’s been working on for months. Too bad his roommate is Aubrey, lover of loud music and messy art projects. She may be adorable, but she’s annoying. And off limits. If he can get the deal ironed out, he’ll be able to buy out both Aubrey and her brother and have the charming bungalow full of warm holiday memories all to himself.
Aubrey Longfellow hates her boss, but she can’t quit her job—even if this one requires her to dress in a skimpy dress and sit on Santa’s lap. Further complicating her bid to prove she’s adulting like a champ is her infuriating stick-in-the-mud roommate, otherwise known as her older brother’s best friend. He disapproves of her choices almost as much as her brother does. Things can’t get worse—until one petty misstep lands Aubrey on the Not So Naughty List.
Now she has to do three selfless things by Christmas Day or be doomed to the Naughty List. Could helping Cole be her ticket to making the Nice List? Or will the attraction suddenly brewing between them lead to something naughty?
Sally Kilpatrick's The Not So Nice List is a delicious treat and just the right length for my busy holiday season. This novella bubbles with humor, heart, endearing characters, plenty of Christmas spirit, Kilpatrick's signature sass, and the real Santa. Twinkling eyes and all!
I loved the chemistry between Aubrey and Cole as they navigated the path from friends (frenemies?) to lovers. The tension between them had been there for ages but neither of them had acted on it. He's a planner; she's impulsive. He's neat and organized; she's a slob. He has a solid career; she can't figure out what she wants to do. He's her brother's best friend. She's always felt judged. Truth be told, he has judged her in the past. But that all begins to change once he sees her candy cane underwear during a "questionable" photo shoot, her subsequent actions land her on Santa's Not So Nice list, her boss takes his repulsive behavior one step too far, and a game of one-on-one basketball lands Aubrey in Cole's arms...maybe for good?
Using heart-tugging realizations and impeccable comedic timing, Kilpatrick leads her characters on a journey of growth that reveals there's more to each of them than the other guessed, that sometimes the best things in life are right down the hall, that Santa knows what he's doing, and that candy cane boxers are always appropriate when love is in the air.
Add this one to your holiday shopping list. It's a quick read and a bundle of fun.