Some dreams were never meant to be...
Renowned architect, Josh McDaniels, spent ten years avoiding his hometown and the unforgettable memories of his youth. But when a former classmate phones him before Christmas with a proposal he can't refuse, he finds himself back in small-town, Lexington, Missouri, surrounded by holiday festivities and engulfed in memories of a blue-eyed girl.
Amanda Masterson knows three things about Josh. She loves him, he loves her, and he'll walk out when those feelings terrify him, as he always does. Ten years ago, he abandoned their dreams. Eight years ago, he returned to break her heart again. Now, he's back once more, and this time, he's jeopardizing not only her heart but her daughter's as well.
Can the spirit of Christmas overcome a past riddled with mistakes? Or will fears and doubts destroy the greatest gift of all?
|Product dimensions:||5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
She is an active member of Romance Writers of America, and her local RWA chapters, Heartland Romance Authors, Midwest Romance Writers, and North Texas Romance Writers of America.
Claire lives in Missouri with her two toddler sons, and too-many horses, cats, and dogs. In her "free" time, she enjoys cooking, winning at Rummy, studying Ancient Civilizations, and spending quiet moments with her family, including the critters. She credits her success to her family's constant support and endless patience.
To learn more about Claire, visit her on the web at www.claireashgrove.com, or www.toristclaire.com
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
When I'm looking for a happy holiday buzz, there are certain things I look for in a story and ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS BIG BLUE EYES really hit the bull's eye. I loved the intimate small town setting, the rekindled romance between childhood sweethearts, and the joint motifs of home and family. Claire Ashgrove's has real talent. Her prose flows smoothly, her dialogue sounds natural, and she maintains good pacing right to the end. Amanda Masterson is the widowed mother of a lovely five-year-old daughter, Emma. The heroine operates a flower business and struggles financially to stay afloat since her husband's accidental death left her with many unpaid bills. She is a smart, sweet lady, instantly likeable and highly sympathetic, although something of a soft touch. She really allowed herself to be taken advantage of and hurt too easily. I wanted to see her toughen up a bit. However, when push comes to shove, Amanda really stepped up and championed her daughter's cause. A key point of external conflict in the story stems from a nefarious aunt attempting to steal Emma's land inheritance out from under her in order to develop a strip mall. Amanda owes back property taxes and had too much pride to accept money from someone else. Enter her childhood sweetheart, Josh McDaniels, who also happens to be the architect contracted to design the strip mall. Talk about conflict of interests! Josh is handsome and intelligent, but also surly and not really a people person. Initially, I found him to be too selfish and self-centered and I would have preferred best friend (third wheel) Lucas Benning as Amanda's romantic interest. However, you love who you love and Amanda's heart clearly belonged to Josh. Internal conflict comes from a complex set of hang-ups both Amanda and Josh seem to be carrying forward from the past. She is afraid of being hurt (yet again) and he is distrustful of love. To his credit, the hero does evolve as the story progresses. He gets over himself in a big way and steps up by the end in time for a wonderful HEA ending. Love scenes are sensual, not overly detailed, but wonderfully evocative. I really liked secondary characters Emma Materson and Lucas, and I'd love to see a follow-up romance for him. The author inspires warm, fuzzy feelings with a deft hand throughout the telling of this contemporary Christmas romance.
"All I Want for Christmas is Big Blue Eyes" captures the spirit of the holiday. Ever since Amanda Masterston was a teenager, her heart belonged to Josh McDaniels. Unfortunately, Josh was slammed with the ruin of his parents' marriage and his father's death. He ran away from his past and left Amanda to deal with her heartbreak. Can he mend their relationship when he returns to Lexington to work on an architectural project? Set against the backdrop of Christmas, Josh is reluctant to return, but once he sees Amanda after an absence of several years, he's ready, yet nervous, to forge a new path for himself. Will the same lingering hurts and obstacles keep them apart? Ashgrove's writing is easy to read and immediately pulls the reader into Josh and Amanda's world. The plot flows well and the descriptions are so vivid, I could smell the cookies baking in Amanda's stove. The most rewarding part of the story is the journey Josh and Amanda take. Both have been deeply hurt. Ashgrove is a master in bringing out her character's inner conflict and finding the right balance between that conflict and the healing power of love. It's poignant, charming, with a fantastic supporting cast. It doesn't have to be Christmas to enjoy the story. The story contains several love scenes that embody the passionate, intense emotions Josh and Amanda share. The allure of Christmas will draw you in, the angst will have you on the edge of your seat, and the ending promises a heartwarming twist. "All I Want for Christmas is Big Blue Eyes" will have you believing in Christmas miracles. A definite page turner