Home for Christmas (Sanctuary Island Series #4)

Home for Christmas (Sanctuary Island Series #4)

by Lily Everett

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Celebrate Christmas on Sanctuary Island, where the love light gleams. There will be snow and mistletoe...and two lonely hearts yearning for love, family, and above all, home.

Magazine columnist Libby Leeds has made a name for herself sharing heartwarming stories from her perfect life on Sanctuary Island. There's just one minor detail she's left out: she hasn't set foot on the island since her childhood. Orphaned and heartbroken, she departed years ago and never looked back-except in her fictional columns. Now a wounded war hero is returning to Sanctuary Island, and Libby's editor insists she cover the story by taking the long road back...


Army Ranger Owen Shepard is a tall, handsome single father, and now a media sensation. He wants to reconnect with his daughter, Caitlin, and make up for lost time by giving her a Christmas to remember. When "America's Favorite Homemaker" Libby Leeds offers her help, he jumps at the chance. But the sweet, reclusive writer is more intriguing, and more tempting, than Owen could have imagined. Soon, Owen and Caitlin are spending their holiday with Libby, decorating trees, making gingerbread houses, and warming up by the fire. It's the closest Libby has come to love and family since she was a child-but until she and Owen admit what is in their hearts, the home they are creating together will be only in their dreams.

"Sanctuary Island will live in your heart long after the book is closed."

-Susan Wiggs, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250074041
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 10/06/2015
Series: Sanctuary Island Series , #4
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Lily Everett grew up in a small town in Virginia reading Misty of Chincoteague and Black Beauty, taking riding lessons, and longing for a horse of her own. Sadly, her parents gave her a college education instead-but she never forgot what the world looked like from the back of a horse. She currently lives in Austin, Texas, where she writes full-time.

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Home for Christmas (Sanctuary Island Series #4) 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
Well, this was a disappointment. I have read Lily Everett before and really enjoyed her work so I decided that this would be the book that I would read leading up to Christmas this year. I just knew that this would be a great read. Unfortunately, this book really didn't work for me. I am not sure if my reading tastes have changed since I last read this author or if it is just this book but this wasn't the enjoyable reading experience I had hoped it would be. Libby Leeds has been living a lie. She is a well known author with a column that is supposed to be non-fiction but her life looks nothing like that column. She gets caught with her deception when her boss invites a well known hero to her home in Sanctuary Island for Christmas dinner. She is then forced to reconnect with family and do her best to be the woman the world knows from her column. Owen was wounded in action and has been working hard to get back into shape so he can return to duty. He has recently discovered that he has a young child who is now living with his sister in Sanctuary Island. He is headed to there to get to know his child and get therapy. He accepts the invitation to have dinner with Libby since he wants to share the perfect Christmas with his daughter. I didn't like Libby or Owen. Libby is living an absolute lie. Owen seems to only be able to focus on going back to active duty. Libby is even pretending to be married for a good portion of the book so this romance just never worked for me. I honestly didn't see a lot of chemistry between them. This is a very tame romance and I just didn't feel the spark that I would have hoped to see. I think that my biggest issue with the book was that so much of the story seemed pointless. Once Libby opens up to Owen, I didn't see the point of continuing with the charade. There is a secondary romance that added nothing to the story and only contained a few short scenes. I found that I was often bored while reading this book and had to read passages more than once because my mind would wander. I would say that the best parts of the book included the scenes with Libby's grandfather and Owen's daughter. Those two characters were the highlight of the story and I would have really liked to see a bit more of them. The book does have a very strong Christmas theme with just about everything Christmas making an appearance at least once. I will not be recommending this book to others. I think that this was a rather forgettable story that was a bit too sweet for my tastes. I won't hesitate to read more from Lily Everett in the future. I received an advance reader edition of this book from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley.
BarbaraLyn More than 1 year ago
This is a sweet story of a family brought together during the Christmas holiday. Life on Sanctuary Island is the idyllic stereotypical small town where everyone knows everyone. Libby Leeds is a writer for a newspaper on food. Unfortunately, all her knowledge is make-believe. She can’t cook and she doesn’t live on Sanctuary Island. BUT her estranged family does. While writing her next column, she watches a video of an Army Ranger, Owen Shepard, who has been injured. He has found out that he has a daughter he didn’t know about who is living with his sister, the town sheriff, on Sanctuary Island. All of these things are about to collide when Libby’s editor wants her to host Owen and his family for a Christmas dinner at her home. Now all Libby has to do is learn to cook and make peace with her family so she can hold the dinner in the family home on the island. Sound easy, right? But her grandfather is a force to be reckoned with, her cousin poses as her husband and she falls for Owen and his daughter. This is a wonderful, happy read and one I didn’t want to put down until I found out how Libby solved all the problems and made Christmas the wonderful time is should be.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
HumorMyWay More than 1 year ago
This was a sweet and sweet and charming Christmas story. It is a read about forgiveness, reconciliation, acceptance and love. One lie has a rolling effect that gets out of control fast. When you are trying to survive and take care of those you love you do things you might not have done. One harmless lie will affect so many lives. One wounded hero and his daughter needs a wonderful Christmas to bring them together. A grandfather lost his whole family, a woman only wants to help her uncle. Each life will entwine by one woman telling one little lie. Owen and Libby are very attracted from the start but one lie gets in the way of them showing how they truly feel. Libby will have to come clean before everyone's who is on the roller-coaster can find a HAE or everyone might lose not only their loves but their families. All Owen has ever known is being a soldier when he get wounded he must learn to deal with that but with a young daughter he has never seen. With Libby's invite for Christmas he see this as a way not only to get to know his daughter but build a love between a father and his child. First he will have to learn what is important and what being a father truly means. Libby only wants to take care of her uncle to do that she must make lot of money. She hasn't seen her grandfather in years. She must turn to him for help in doing so just maybe she can fix the hurt feelings of a family. The author write a lovely heartwarming story filled with so much sadness. She has filled it will wonderful characters as she gives you a touching read. Each character has lost someone they love and are in need of a Christmas miracle. Can one lie bring two families together to find and fix what is missing in their lives? This is a story filled with sorrow, hurt, pain and humor. I thought it was well told but was missing something for me. I had a hard time getting into this and found my mind wondering. It was a good read and I did enjoy it. The author gives you lots of twists and turns to add to the story. Just a little to much drama for me. She does give a well told story that will warm your heart. It was a lovely Christmas story that many will love and some will like. A 3.5 stars rounding up to 4
HEARomances More than 1 year ago
Home for Christmas by Lily Everett is a sweet Christmas treat with a huge heart. I adore all the Sanctuary Island books, Home for Christmas fits in nicely. Who doesn’t need a Christmas miracle? Owen a true war hero who was completely out of his element in this story, for which I found absolutely endearing. Ms. Everett gave Owen many different levels for the reader to hit on, Gruff/Lonely/Unsureness /Loving he has it all. Can Owen find a place for himself as comfortable to him as the Army was? Can two ladies that hold his heart convince him he is worth everything? Libby was truly hard not to connect with, totally adorable, sweet, kind but so not a push over. Libby is trying to recreate what her news column says she is, but what happens next even I did not see coming. Coming back to Sanctuary Island, to the home she once loved was one of the hardest thing Libby has done. Can she make this crazy scheme work? Can she and her estranged family give a war hero and his daughter a Christmas to remember? I really enjoy the slow build of the chemistry between Libby and Owen, sweet yet hot. They both bring so much to this story, but they have issues of their own they need to straighten out. When all the truths are out can Owen move past and give Libby a "true" chance at love? Supporting characters were amazing! They help give life to Libby and Owen plus added a few interesting events as well. Sweet Caitlin captured my heart, as a reader I wanted everything for this torn little girl. I enjoyed seeing characters from previous books, but I need Nash & Ivy to have a happy ending. (hint) As plots go this one was full of interesting events, characters that tugged at your heart strings and a few you just wanted to punch in the face. (Rhonda) *g* A small town that holds many secrets not all that are bad. Lily Everett is as magical as her characters are, she brings to life the hopefulness, romance in her books like a true veteran of Romance.
bouncyberthaCR More than 1 year ago
5 - "At least we still have Christmas." Stars! I have been waiting for Home for Christmas pretty much since I finished reading it’s predecessor Heartbreak Cove back in February, and Lily Everett didn’t disappoint, the wait was worth it. Sergeant First Class Owen Shepard’s reasons for being on Sanctuary Island bring this emotional and warming Christmas story right into your heart as you are reading it. Having joined the Army and spent the intervening years fighting overseas, recovery from almost fatal injuries on his last tour, as well as learning he has a young daughter he never knew about mean there are more than a few decisions he needs to make about his, and now his daughters future. We met the spunky Caitlin back in the previous book as she moved to Sanctuary to live with his sister, until Owen was free to return home. ”You can’t change what you did in the past but it doesn’t have to overshadow your entire future.” Caitlin’s early years were not spent in the most loving or nurturing of environments and because of that she is a very insecure and nervous little girl, the upheaval of losing her mother, moving to a new home and now meeting the father she never knew existed, brings about more than a few emotional moments, especially as it isn’t initially all rainbows and sunbeams between them. Libby Leeds was the perfect connector between the two of them, although in an untenable situation pretty much of her own making, she goes out of her way to make the first Christmas together for Owen and his daughter as special and memorable as it can be. Their own blossoming chemistry, as well as the side stories with her cousin Nash and Sanctuary's Police Dispatcher Ivy, kept this story moving along really well, it was a busy book but not overly so. ”It’s hard not to sense magic in the air. It’s hard not to believe in miracles.” It was also impossible not to fall in love with this book. I love this author, she manages to bring a community together in each of her books, without detracting the focus from the main characters, it makes you feel welcomed and at home, and what could be more perfect at Christmas-time! ”This is magical.” ARC generously provided via Netgalley, and it was a pleasure to provide the above honest review.
debwill74 More than 1 year ago
I received this copy of Home for Christmas from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Home for Christmas is a wonderfully create book full of hi-jinks, heart and Christmas joy. Once again Lily Everett leaves you wishing you could be part of the Sanctuary Island community.
ravenwolf_EPTX More than 1 year ago
Disabled War Hero meets with Queen of Storytelling for Holidays ** Provided by Publisher in Exchange for an Honest Review ** Judging a Book by it's Cover: Cover depicts a classic winter-y Christmas scene with horse-drawn sleigh, snow-covered cabin in the woods, and surrounding pines wrapped in lights. Synopsis sounds warm and filled with love, healing, and second-chances - a theme that Ms. Everett is well-versed in. Looking Deeper: Third person POV. For the past several years, Libby's been living a lie - or perhaps more like wistful thinking. But the daydreams and make-believe life is shattered when her boss commits her to a task that can expose her to all as a fraud. Given an ultimatum, present the perfect life she always writes about or lose your job and risk prison, how is she going to pull this off? Owen's broken, in more ways than one, and all he wants is to find his way home to his daughter and try to make her holidays something truly memorable and special, but will be able to connect to a child that knows he only plans on leaving her again? Ms. Everett never fails to infuse family values with hope and heart-warming second chances. The Hero and heroine in this story are both very well-written. There are a handful of secondary characters present or mentioned from previous installments of this series, and other tied-in series', however, this story can and does stand strongly on it's own. There are also a few new characters introduced into the mix, each providing another layer or filler to the plot. The chemistry between Libby and Owen is fantastic, even (or, maybe, especially) when Owen thought Libby was married to Nash - which provided a few smiles and giggles along the way. The interaction between the characters is authentic and the dialogue felt spot-on. There were several conflicts along the way, especially given the premise of the plot, that were handled in the best way they were able. The lies and secrets were getting a little tedious and thick however, seems everyone had something to hide, or at least omit. The plot is extremely well-written with an easy flow with characters that you feel like you truly are getting to know on a personal level. There were only a few small spots that I'd say predictability made itself present (the Christmas Present in the epilogue, for one). The conclusion felt solid and sturdy with an epilogue that covered all the key elements. Overall, HOME FOR CHRISTMAS was an endearing Holiday read. ------------------------------------------------------------------------- Heat Level: 3 [PG-13] ~ Score: 4.2 ~ Stars: 4 -------------------------------------------------------------------------
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Home for Christmas by Lily Everett had me falling in love with Sanctuary Island. This was the first book I read in the Sanctuary Island Series and the first book I have read by Lily Everett. I promise you, it will not be the last! She combines family, love, romance, forgiveness and Christmas. Grab yourself a blanket, a cup of hot cocoa, then curl up on the sofa and enjoy this book as much as I did!
My_Peace More than 1 year ago
Home for Christmas by Lily Everett was another enjoyable trip to Sanctuary Island for me. Libby is a writer and a story teller...only everyone who reads her work thinks her stories are real. Including her boss. When he comes up with a holiday plan on Libby's 'home' on Sanctuary Island that includes Libby's 'family' and an injured soldier, Libby has no choice but to come clean. The charade must continue though when her boss gives her an ultimatum, and Libby heads back to the place she hasn't been in years. Owen is on Sanctuary Island recovering from injuries and getting to know his young daughter. He has issues of his own, and the strong attraction to Libby is as unexpected as she is unreachable. After all, she already has her 'family'. Will either of them find peace on Sanctuary Island and the real family they long for? The central plot to Home For Christmas is not really believable. Despite this, Lily Everett drew me into Libby and Owen's lives and made me care about what was happening. Libby truly is a story teller, with her own dreams unrealized. I liked her, I liked how open she was about almost everything and that she had her secrets, but didn't want to have secrets, and at the right times opened up. She is very enthusiastic in all she does! Gabe is an Army Ranger with lots of challenges ahead of him. He has big decisions to make, and while I didn't always agree with what he was doing or thinking, I understood him. The attraction and chemistry between Libby and Owen is palpable and was intriguing to follow along when they had to try to rein themselves in because of the situation. I truly hoped they could find a way to be together, because I could easily sense they were both hurting and could only be good for each other. Libby and Owen's characters develop well through Home for Christmas, and Gabe in particular really grows. This was heart warming and hopeful. I loved the secondary characters! They all fit well in with the plot without overwhelming it. I really enjoyed Libby's grandfather, because I felt like underneath that gruffness there is a lot of feeling. It was great to see some characters from previous Sanctuary Island books and catch up with them. Owen's daughter is a sweet little thing who will at times makes your heart want to break and at all times fill it with love. The setting of Sanctuary Island, the snow, and the season are all well described and I could feel Christmas in the air! It's a place I'd love to be! Home for Christmas is part of the Sanctuary Island series, but in my opinion can easily be read as a stand alone. I'd recommend Home for Christmas to any romance reader looking for a holiday read!
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
I love these Sanctuary Island books and I think this is one of the best! The connection between Libby, Owen, and Owen's young daughter Caitlin is magical and brings all the beauty of the holiday season to the forefront of your heart. Yes, Libby is keeping secrets but her reasons are pure and frankly they're a bit funny, but she powers through and in the end finds a life she has always dreamed of. Owen is back home, injured during his last deployment. He is fighting to get to know the daughter he never knew about while at the same time trying to get his body to heal enough to get back to his men. However, the love for his daughter and the feelings he is developing for one tiny reporter may derail his best laid plans. This is one that should be on everyone's holiday must read list. I highly recommend it.
Lashea677 More than 1 year ago
Libby is a woman who stopped believing in happily ever after a long time ago. So she creates her own. Full of half-truths and fantasies. Owen has experienced the horror and uncertainties of war. Changed by it all he has a better appreciation for life and the loved ones he left behind. His new lease on life is put to the test by the daughter he wants to get to know and the reporter that enters his life. Home for Christmas by Lily Everett is a precious story that uplifts the spirit and warms the heart. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
CathyGeha More than 1 year ago
Libby and Owen meet on the Ferry to Sanctuary Island. She is not who and what she has led the world to believe in the articles she has been paid for. Owen is an injured Ranger home to meet his daughter for the first time and to take part in equine physical therapy. Libby and Owen are drawn to one another but have obstacles to overcome before they can have their happily ever after. This able to stand alone 4th book in the Sanctuary Island series is a predictable but fun Christmas romance for anyone looking for a clean story with a happy ending. Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for the copy of this book to read and review.