I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Big Sky Christmas by CJ Carmichael
Series: Coffee Creek #4
Published by Harlequin on 10/1/2013
Genres: Adult, Romance
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A Holiday For Healing
\r\nJackson Stone will always be grateful to the Lamberts, who took him in when he was just a kid. But since the accident that killed his foster brother, Brock, he stays away from the family at Coffee Creek Ranch. Especially now that Brock's former fiancee, Winnie Hays, is back in town with her little boy.\r\n\r\nThe simmering attraction between them may surprise Winnie, but Jackson fell for her at first sight years ago. Loyalty and guilt require he keep his distance, even as their feelings blossom into love. In the end, it's his own conscience Jackson must master. But with the help of the Lamberts, can this Christmas be a time of healing and a new beginning?
Big Sky Christmas was such a super cute book. I really fell in like with the characters and now I want to read more about the others.
Here we have the magic formula again: Cowboys and Christmas and really, what’s not to love about that? Winnie Hays has returned to Coffee Creek after the death of her fiance, Brock. She now has a son, Brock’s son, since she had just gotten pregnant when he died during an unfortunate auto accident the night before their wedding. The driver of the vehicle? Sexy cowboy Jackson Stone.
Jackson has always had eyes for Winnie, but kept his hands and thoughts to himself, since she belonged to Brock. It was really like a star-crossed lovers, except it went one way, because she never thought of him like that and he thought of Brock like a brother, living with Brock’s family full time from the time he was 13-years-old. He also feels incredible guilt for being behind the wheel of the collision that caused Brock’s death, although it wasn’t actually his fault. No one really blames him, except for one person, and it isn’t Winnie. He just has his demons about it.
Winnie kept her pregnancy a semi-secret, until her return to Coffee Creek, sometime later with her child in tow. She has largely moved on from Brock’s death, although it seems that certain people in Coffee Creek have not. She’s also not against dating again, and finds herself attracted to Jackson, and he to her, much to his own distress. He doesn’t want to keep wanting her and taint the memory of the man he called a brother.
Overall, I enjoyed the story a lot. It has everything a sweet Christmas romance should have in it: two people who are tantalizingly into each other, but won’t get close, CHRISTMAS, cowboys. I mean, THE COWBOYS. Swoon. Winnie and Jackson were hot hot hot together and I really wanted them to get together.
I also enjoyed the side stories and how it all came together so well. Everything and everyone is more interwoven than I initially realized and it wrapped up so neatly in the end.
I did have some issues with the timing in the story. I believe it was largely hinted that Winnie left town right after Brock’s death without knowing she was pregnant and returned 18 months later with her son, which puts him at 11 months old, as stated in the book. But he toddles too well for an 11-month-old and he certainly talks too well and understands conversation too well for a child who is only 11 months old. I felt like this detail was either overlooked in Big Sky Christmas or C.J. Carmichael forgot how old she made Winnie’s son.
Overall though, Big Sky Christmas is the perfect holiday romance to snuggle up with, just don’t forget your hot chocolate. 😉