A mistletoe wish …
All her life, Serena Talbot has been in love with the handsome boy next door, Sir Paul Garside. She always eagerly looks forward to Paul’s visit to her family over the Festive Season, even if he usually brings along his dark, sardonic friend Lord Hallam. This year, Serena is determined that Paul’s kiss under the mistletoe will lead to a proposal. Even if she has to enlist every ounce of Christmas magic she can get her hands on to make that happen.
But the mistletoe gets it wrong!
When Serena slips a sprig of mistletoe from the village kissing bough under her pillow, it’s not Paul who turns up in her dreams as the man she’s going to marry, but brooding, intense, annoying Giles Farraday, Marquess of Hallam. Still more annoying, once everyone arrives for the annual Christmas house party, she can’t stop watching Giles, and thinking about Giles. And kissing Giles, whether there’s mistletoe about or not. Now Paul wants to marry her, and Giles wants to seduce her–and Serena has a bone to pick with the old wives who came up with all this superstitious nonsense in the first place.
A Christmas of confusion lies ahead! Will mistletoe magic lead the way to a happy ending?
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A Match Made in Mistletoe: A Regency Novella
For years, Serena Talbot has been in love with her neighbor, Paul, and has been patiently waiting for him to notice that she’s all grown up. Serena has a feeling that at this year’s Christmas houseparty, Paul will finally really see her and ask her to spend her future with him. While anticipating Paul’s arrival, Serena decides to indulge in an old superstition. She slips a bit of mistletoe under her pillow, and goes to bed, expecting to dream of her future spouse. The only problem is – it’s not Paul she dreams about. Instead, Giles Farraday, her brother’s friend and frequent visitor shows up as her love. Giles was orphaned as a child, and has been spending holidays with Serena’s family since he was only eight years old. Over the years, Serena mostly ignored him because she only had eyes for Paul.
Now, as the guests begin to arrive, Serena is feeling unsettled by her dream, and is now aware of Giles in a way she never has been before. Unknown to anyone else, Giles has loved Serena for years, and was fully aware that she only wanted Paul. He and Paul are best friends, and he made no attempt to win Serena’s affection, feeling it would be hopeless anyway. Yet, now Serena’s eyes follow him, and he sees sensual curiosity there. Serena convinces herself that she only wants Giles to teach her how to kiss, so that when Paul finally kisses her, she will know what she is doing. Giles’ kisses have a strong effect on Serena, and she can’t stay away from him. But, it’s Paul she wants, isn’t it?
What a tangle this turns into! Paul decides he’s ready to settle down with Serena, yet she’s strangely elusive these days. Giles knows he’s only being used, but he can’t stay away from Serena either. As for Serena, she’s not sure which way is up. While Paul was not really a villain at all, he was actually quite likable, I still was rooting for Giles. The dark, brooding, sexy, sad man stole my heart. I’m a sucker for a character with a sad childhood, and when he suffers from unrequited love, too, I am lost. I love how Anna Campbell painted the two men so differently – Paul was golden in looks, and had a sunny personality, while Giles was dark and had a bleak past and hidden depths. Can a new attraction overrule a lifetime of dreams? Serena has to sort out her true feelings and bring an end to this love triangle.
A MATCH MADE IN MISTLETOE is a short but compelling read. I couldn’t put the book down without knowing that Serena was going to make the right choice. The author skillfully showed Serena’s youth in some of her actions, and caused me to wonder if this story would end the way I wanted it to. I’m a huge fan of epilogues, and there is a lovely one here. I’m happy to recommend this well written and engaging book which contains much more depth than a typical novella. The backdrop of the Christmas holiday just adds to the pleasure of the reading experience.