Ok, so it is all well and good to be dreaming of a white Christmas, and charmed by cosy stories of love and snowfall and Christmas, but really that is just so far from the reality of our sunny summer Christmases here that sometimes I just want to read something still cosy and sweet (or a bit spicy!) that reflects our seasons. I thought I’d share a couple in case you would like a summer Christmas read too.
One of my favourite Christmas books is Sandy Barker’s The Christmas Swap, which is set at Christmas across the snowy US and UK, as well as sunny Sydney. I really loved the way the three stories and settings are linked, and the balance of cosy cold and beachy sun was perfect for me. My full review of this one is here, and Sandy was also kind enough to come on the blog last year to chat Christmas with me – you can find the Q&A here.
One of the best ways I’ve found to get a taste of Aussie Christmas romance into your December reading is through the novella collections that Harper Collins often release in October. I haven’t seen one this year, but I have a stack of them on my shelves that I pull out each year – Our Country Christmas, A Very Country Christmas, Christmas in the Countryside, and Christmas Among the Gum Trees. I find the novella format perfect for reading at this time of year -it’s less of a commitment at a busy time of year. It is also a great way to get a little taste for the work of some really great Aussie writers – there are stories in these from Darry Fraser, Penelope Janu, Fiona Lowe, Eva Scott, Rachael Johns and Victoria Purman, just to name a few.
While I’m not sure that all of the paperbacks are still available I do know that you can often find the novellas as ebooks – I’ve include some blurbs below for ones I know you can get ebooks for, in case you’re interested in checking them out..
Australian Christmas Romance novellas available as ebooks
Christmas in Ghost Gum Springs by Nicole Flockton
A lover of all things Christmas, publican Connor is determined to bring Christmas spirit to the small town of Ghost Gum Springs. He’s ready to take on the grinchiest of Scrooges-even the unhappy American girl staying at the pub who would obviously rather be anywhere else. He just didn’t expect Scrooge to be quite so attractive.
12 Days at Silver Bells House by Jennie Jones
Escaping to the country, Kate has twelve days to find herself. The last thing she expects is to find an attractive yet uncommunicative man living in her holiday home. Can the enchanting Silver Bells House and a community dripping in holiday spirit bind Kate and Jamie together? Or will love get lost on the highway back to the city?
Her Christmas Kisses by Susanne Bellamy
Stranded in Rainbow Cove with no car, no work and no prospect of saving her family’s restaurant, Flick needs a Christmas miracle. It may have been his car that put her in this mess but Xander, luxury resort owner, might just be the solution Flick is looking for-if only Flick and Xander can ignore the undeniable spark between them.
Naughty or Nice by Lauren K. McKellar
Claire wants one thing this Christmas: to land the big promotion at work and finally dispel the office gossip. ‘Nice guy’ Hamish has his own reasons for wanting that same promotion. The last thing either of them needs is an office fling. Their naughty games could ruin everything, but are Hamish and Claire about to discover what it truly means to win?
Tinsel in a Tangle by Ainslie Paton
It’s Shelby’s job to make sure the office Christmas party is a success. She didn’t think she needed to worry about the shy new guy, her inappropriate crush, ending up in the emergency room after decking one of their colleagues. But since Shelby’s New Year’s resolution is to go after what she wants, maybe there’s still a chance this season will be jolly.
The Drover Comes Home for Christmas by Darry Fraser
To save his drought-stricken farm, Shep Miller is droving his remaining cattle in a desperate bid to reach the last sale before Christmas. Widow Jenny Wickley is glad to take in his two children, hoping to help the neighbour she has long admired. But when peculiar swaggies turn up with a touch of magic, a mystery is uncovered that will put all their lives in danger. Will the drover make it home in time?
The Six Rules of Christmas by Penelope Janu
Picking up the reins of her father’s law practice, Ariella Blake has made a place for herself in small-town Warrandale. But when stand-in farrier Jack Adamson blows in for the holidays, with his good looks and infuriating evasiveness, he challenges her to embrace the rules of Christmas. Step by step, will Christmas – and Jack – get under her skin?
Christmas at Remarkable Bay by Victoria Purman
Prickly Mara has hit a crossroads and is hoping a Christmas alone in idyllic Remarkable Bay will help. Police officer George is also alone for Christmas. Drawn together unwillingly, they try to stay out of each other’s way. But Remarkable Bay is a small place…
Under Christmas Stars by Alissa Callen
Small-town teacher Freya George is determined to make up for last year’s disastrous Christmas. This year she will stop at nothing to ensure that she and the Woodlea community have the best holiday season ever. But from the moment Freya meets cattleman Drew Macgregor, her plans unravel faster than red Christmas ribbon…
Newborn Baby for Christmas by Fiona Lowe
Georgie and Hamish have been best friends forever. So Hamish can’t refuse when Georgie asks him for the Christmas present she’s spent her whole life waiting for – a baby! But seeing a very pregnant Georgie changes everything. Not only is Hamish going to be a father, suddenly he’s falling for the mother of his child…
A Tale of Three Christmases by Eva Scott
Turning her small farm into a B&B seems the perfect way for Lexie to make ends meet after the death of her husband. Not having to face Christmas alone is a bonus. But when attractive businessman Geoff arrives, everything she thought she needed changes. Can strangers from different worlds find lasting love? Or does fate have surprising plans?
The Christmas Wish by Jacquie Underdown
Returning home, schoolteacher Brielle hopes a quiet Christmas will quash the ever-present feeling that she no longer belongs anywhere. For single dad Luke, romance is off the agenda – no matter how appealing his one-time antagonist Brielle has become. It’s not only his heart that’s at risk – it’s that of his young daughter too. But after a Christmas wish is cast, the spirit of Christmas conspires to create some holiday magic.
Home for Christmas by Fiona Greene
Sergeant Tate McAuliffe, stationed in Afghanistan, opens his Christmas care package from Australia and is stunned by both its contents and the sender.
Fun-loving Christmas tree designer Layla Preston is a breath of fresh air for loner Tate. Although they’ve never met, their email friendship quickly develops and their feelings for each other deepen.
But Layla knows the heartache that loving a soldier can bring and when Tate is injured, her deep-seated fear drives them apart. With their relationship in tatters, can Layla and Tate work through their differences, so Layla can welcome Tate home for Christmas?
The Kissing Season by Rachael Johns
Every family has a black sheep…and Hannah Elliot is it.
It’s no surprise to anyone when Hannah Elliot makes the spontaneous decision to marry a stranger in Las Vegas. But when she finds herself pregnant and her new husband files for an annulment, she dreads having to tell her family.
Returning to her Australian hometown of Wildwood Point, Hannah is determined to become a devoted mum and put her baby’s needs ahead of her own. She’s also set to prove to her family she can actually be responsible. This means putting her wild past behind her and accepting a job back in the family business…while keeping her pregnancy a secret!
Except, when gorgeous Italian Matteo Della–Bosca walks through the shop door, Hannah finds her resolve slipping fast…
12 Daves of Christmas by Juliet Madison
Abby Solomon may write happy–ever–afters for a living, but doesn’t believe she’ll have her own. But then a surprise visit from her grandmother’s ghost sets her off on a journey she’ll never forget.
Grandma Charlotte wants to find her first love, Dave, who she mistakenly thought had died in World War II. A quick trawl through the Yellow Pages yields a list of twelve possibilities, and Abby and Charlotte set off on a Christmas road trip – twelve Daves over twelve days along the sun–drenched east coast of Australia.
With just over a week to make the meeting happen, Abby has to meet a dozen Daves – some sweet, some quirky, some downright dangerous – while trying to honour her book deadline and enduring the awkward challenges of having a ghost as a travelling companion.
But when she comes across a young doctor who looks like the hero in one of her novels, Abby has the chance to discover that true love transcends time and space, and that happy endings aren’t only to be found between the pages of a book.
From Christmas To Forever by Marion Lennox
Heiress Dr Pollyanna Hargreaves has been wrapped in cotton wool all her life, now she’s determined to strike out on her own! But she never expected to get stuck with handsome GP Dr Hugo Denver for Christmas. He’s meant to have left on holiday with his adorable niece already – not be tempting her at every turn!
Forced to work together Hugo’s icy exterior soon begins to thaw. And it’s not long before Polly realises that she’s falling for him…and little Ruby too!
Swept Away By The Seductive Stranger by Amy Andrews
Nurse Felicity Mitchell’s train journey of a lifetime was even more unforgettable when she met Callum Hollingsworth. Neither were looking for temptation, but that didn’t stop them from sharing one hot, wild night!
Except when they disembark they learn that what happened on the train won’t stay on the train. Because the gorgeous stranger is Flick’s new boss…and it’s increasingly difficult to keep their chemistry under control, and leave it at just one night!
The Temptation Test by Meredith Webber
When Jena arrived in Kareela, three weeks before Christmas, she had one goal: to convince her boss to put her on his new TV survival series. But first she had to survive primitive accommodation, filming a documentary about Kareela’s bush hospital, and the ever-so-tempting Dr Noah Blacklock.
A relationship was no part of her agenda and, as a man still technically engaged, it wasn’t part of Noah’s, either. But oh, Jena was so beautiful. They failed the Temptation Test repeatedly, but neither was going to turn a wonderful affair into something altogether more memorable!
Ok, so that turned into a WAY bigger post than I expected, but I feel like there must almost be something in there to appeal to any romance reader – I”d love to hear whether you check any of these out!