Title: Merry Ex-Mas (Icicle Falls #2)
Author: Sheila Roberts
Genre: Contemporary Fiction (Light Romance); Christmas
Published: October 2012 – Harlequin MIRA
Synopsis: (publisher) Christmas in Icicle Falls…
Cass Wilkes, owner of the Gingerbread Haus bakery, was looking forward to her daughter Danielle’s wedding…until Dani announced that she wants her father, Cass’s ex, to walk her down the aisle. Seriously? And, since every B and B is full, it looks as if he, his trophy wife and their yappy little dog will be staying with Cass.
Her friend Charlene Albach arrives at their weekly chick-flick night in shock. She’s just seen the ghost of Christmas past: her ex-husband, Richard, who left her a year ago. He ran off with the hostess from her restaurant, Zelda’s, to start a new life (and restaurant) in Seattle. Now the hostess is history and he wants to kiss and make up. Hide the mistletoe!
And bring out the hot buttered rum, because the holidays aren’t so easy for Ella O’Brien, either. Ella, who’s newly divorced, is still sharing the house with her ex while they wait for the place to sell, and they’re still fighting over all the things they fought over when they were married. The love is gone. Isn’t it?
But Christmas has a way of working its magic. One of these women is about to rediscover love, another is going to remember what’s important in life and the third will find new dreams in the new year. Merry Ex-mas, ladies!
My take: Sheila Roberts takes us back to Icicle Falls, the picturesque Washington mountain town (and the setting of Better Than Chocolate), home to what I found to be completely relatable characters in relatable circumstances.
In this book, we find secondary characters from Better Than Chocolate in the lead roles:
Cass, owner of the local bakery, is surprised by her daughter’s post-Thanksgiving engagement announcement and even more surprised that the wedding will take place before Christmas! She’s flabbergasted that her home is the only place with a vacancy for her ex-husband and his much younger second wife. Oh my goodness.
Charley is now the sole owner of a popular local restaurant after her ex ran off with their hostess. She’s surprised to see him back in town. Without the hostess. What is that all about?
Ella runs an upscale boutique (which is owned by her mother) and is newly divorced. How she ever fell for that no-good country singer wannabe is beyond her mother. Ella and Jake are still living under the same roof because, until they sell their house, they can’t afford to live elsewhere. Jake’s mother-in-law did everything in her power to break them up and she won. Or did she? Be careful, mama, or your ex son-in-law may dedicate a song to you! (see video below ;))
This is a Contemporary Christmas novel so if you imagine the ending will be predictable, you’re right! What isn’t predictable is how the ending is reached. Merry Ex-Mas is filled with typical Sheila Roberts humor and entertaining characters. I found it to be a perfectly fun seasonal read.
Recommended to fans of Sheila Roberts, Contemporary Light Romance, and Christmas novels.
Disclosure: Review copy from the publisher. I was not compensated for my review.
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About the author:
Sheila Roberts is married and has three children. She lives on a lake in the Pacific Northwest. Her novels have
appeared in Reader’s Digest Condensed Books and have been published in several languages. Her book Angel Lane was an Amazon Top Ten Romance pick for 2009 and her holiday perennial On Strike for Christmas was made into a movie for the Lifetime Movie Network. When she’s not hanging out with her girlfriends or hitting the dance floor with her husband, she can be found writing about those things dear to women’s hearts: family, friends and chocolate.