First of all, I loved Cade and Molly, and Susie. They were likeable characters who I grew to care about in a short space of time. Molly was a fresh heroine, a single mom in a truly believable situation. Ditto with Cade. I kept imagining Scott Eastwood, Clint Eastwood's son, as Cade, which was very agreeable. I found the tragedy in his past to be heartbreaking and realistic, as well as his reaction to it. I could empathize with him, which made the story even better for me.
Usually, it is very hard for authors to make readers buy into the imaginary world of a novella. There isn't enough time for them to build a relationship with the characters. Not so in The Christmas Angel. How Molly became a single mom was dealt with quickly, and so contemporary that I could understand how it could have happened. The same with Cade's past. I was invested in their lives by page three.
I love Ms. Gibson's writing. I always find her settings masterfully described. I have been to Napa numerous times, and feel like I'm there when I read her series. I felt the nip in the air, and could see the town clearly in my mind. Great atmosphere for a Christmas novella. I love that her characters could be friends of mine. They have a warmth that transcends the written page.
The Christmas Angel is my favorite St Helena Vineyard story of hers. Maybe it's the time of year, or maybe its the world she created, but I wanted the story to continue. I didn't have enough of Cade, Molly, and Susie.
If you're looking for a feel-good Christmas romance, you should pick up The Christmas Angel. You'll feel happy and in the Christmas spirit after reading it.
The hood of her car was up and Cade was bent over the engine. Her gaze lingered on his taut butt in his faded jeans. She looked away before he caught her checking him out.
“How’s it going? Find anything else I don’t want to know about?” She kept her tone light and friendly. No use flirting. Cade had made it plain he wasn’t interested.
“Nope. The rest looks fine.” He reached down inside the crowded engine compartment.
“Can you hand me the three-eighths socket wrench on the workbench?”
“That’s why I’m here.”
They worked side by side until the engine was thoroughly checked and a new starter was installed. Few words were exchanged while Cade focused on the job.
“Get in and let’s see if it works.”
She slid into in the driver’s seat and turned the key. The engine fired right away. Relief washed over her. She couldn’t afford a new car. One less thing to worry about now.
“How much do I owe you for the starter?”
“Take it up with Matt. It’s used, so he probably won’t charge much.”
“And I got free labor. So how about I buy you dinner over at the Napa Grand?”
Damn, why did she ask?
He looked down and scowled. “I’m not exactly dressed for the restaurant at the Napa Grand. How about a raincheck?”
She was not going to have embarrassing moment number three. “You have to eat, Cade. It’s nearly seven o’clock. Susie is at a sleepover so I don’t have to rush home.”
He sighed and ran his fingers through his light brown hair, shoving a lock off his forehead. “If you make it the Spigot, you’ve got yourself a deal.”
She didn’t realize she was holding her breath until he agreed. “Great. I’ll move the car out to the street and we’ll walk over.”
She parked the car while Cade locked the garage. The temperature had dropped after the rain and a few stars appeared overhead. They strolled down Main Street where colored lights outlined window displays and large wreaths with red bows hung from light posts. While mainly a bar, the Spigot did have a limited menu and was very casual. Waving to Frankie and Nate DeLuca seated near the dart board, they found a quiet table in a corner.
She began reading romance novels while waiting for the birth of her son, David. By the time her daughter, Shelley, came along, she was thoroughly hooked and wanted to write them. But life sometimes gets in the way and she put off her dream while working, first as a newspaper reporter, and then in public agencies. She eventually moved to the wine country where she learned to grow grapes and make wine.
Today she mostly lives on a 32-foot boat, but gets back to the Northern California wine country whenever she can. She still loves to walk on a beach barefoot, but has added warm fragrant bubble baths and well-balanced wine to her favorite things. While writing, she loves to munch on chocolate and keeps her galley well-stocked.
Whether you're an early California history buff or someone who loves a good romance, she hopes you enjoy her books. Be sure and leave a review.