It’s been chilly in Austin the past few days, which means I’ve been all bundled up inside and I took a soak in the tub last night. I was feeling so tired, and then I realized today’s December 1st! That means advent calendars and Christmas movies and holiday books — not that we haven’t started them already.
There’s just something special about the entire month of December, you know? I always look forward to putting together a list of festive reads and there are some goodies this year. I’m also sharing picks from previous years in case you need a big pile of books to choose from 🙂
This is the book I’m currently reading. The story follows Laurie and she sees a man she thinks she knows out of a snowy window on the train… of course, he disappears into nowhere and she can’t stop thinking about him.
She becomes a little obsessed with the thought of finding him and it stays that way for an entire year. There are even times she thinks she sees him… but realizes she may not even remember what he looks like.
They eventually reunite, but the saga continues. Will they finally end up together forever? This one is a popular pick and has 4/5 stars on GoodReads!
‘The Twelve Dates of Christmas’ by Jenny Bayliss
I heard about this one on the “From the Front Porch” podcast and thought it sounded so cute. Here’s the scoop: When it comes to relationships, thirty-four-year-old Kate Turner is ready to say “Bah, humbug.” The sleepy town of Blexford, England, isn’t exactly brimming with prospects, and anyway, But then her best friend signs her up for a dating agency that promises to help singles find love before the holidays. Twenty-three days until Christmas. Twelve dates with twelve different men. The odds must finally be in her favor . . . right?
Yet with each new date more disastrous than the one before–and the whole town keeping tabs on her misadventures–Kate must remind herself that sometimes love, like mistletoe, shows up where it’s least expected.
‘Royal Holiday’ by Jasmine Guillory
Vivian Forest has been out of the country a grand total of one time, so when she gets the chance to tag along on her daughter Maddie’s work trip to England to style a royal family member, she can’t refuse. She’s excited to spend the holidays taking in the magnificent British sights, but what she doesn’t expect is to become instantly attracted to a certain private secretary, his charming accent, and unyielding formality.
Malcolm Hudson has worked for the Queen for years and has never given a personal, private tour—until now. He is intrigued by Vivian the moment he meets her and finds himself making excuses just to spend time with her. When flirtatious banter turns into a kiss under the mistletoe, things snowball into a full-on fling.
Despite a ticking timer on their holiday romance, they are completely fine with ending their short, steamy affair come New Year’s Day. . .or are they?
‘We Met in December’ by Rosie Curtis
Twenty-nine-year-old Jess is following her dream and moving to London. It’s December, and she’s taking a room in a crumbling, but grand, Notting Hill house-share with four virtual strangers. On her first night, Jess meets Alex, the guy sharing her floor, at a Christmas dinner hosted by her landlord. They don’t kiss, but as far as Jess is concerned the connection is clear. She starts planning how they will knock down the wall between them to spend more time together.
But when Jess returns from a two-week Christmas holiday, she finds Alex has started dating someone else—beautiful Emma, who lives on the floor above them. Now Jess faces a year of bumping into (hell, sharing a bathroom with) the man of her dreams…and the woman of his.
I feel like so many of the books are set in London… I miss traveling! 😦
‘In a Holidaze’ by Christina Lauren
But perhaps worst of all, this is the last Christmas Mae will be at her favorite place in the world—the snowy Utah cabin where she and her family have spent every holiday since she was born, along with two other beloved families. Mentally melting down as she drives away from the cabin for the final time, Mae throws out what she thinks is a simple plea to the universe: Please. Show me what will make me happy.
The next thing she knows, tires screech and metal collides, everything goes black. But when Mae gasps awake…she’s on an airplane bound for Utah, where she begins the same holiday all over again. With one hilarious disaster after another sending her back to the plane, Mae must figure out how to break free of the strange time loop—and finally get her true love under the mistletoe.
‘Mistletoe & Mr. Right’ by Sarah Morgenthaler
Lana Montgomery is everything the quirky small town of Moose Springs, Alaska can’t stand: a rich socialite with dreams of changing things for the better. But Lana’s determined to prove that she belongs…even if it means trading her stilettos for snow boots and tracking one of the town’s hairiest Christmas mysteries: the Santa Moose, an antlered Grinch hell-bent on destroying every bit of holiday cheer (and tinsel) it can sink its teeth into.
And really…how hard could it be?
The last few years have been tough on Rick Harding, and it’s not getting any easier now that his dream girl’s back in town. When Lana accidentally tranquilizes him instead of the Santa Moose, it’s clear she needs help, fast…and this could be his chance to finally catch her eye. It’s an all-out Christmas war, but if they can nab that darn moose before it destroys the town, Rick and Lana might finally find a place where they both belong…together.
Holiday Picks from Previous Years
- “Christmas Shopaholic” by Sophie Kinsella | Festive, whimsical
- “The Perfect Christmas” by Debbie Macomber | Holiday romance
- “Christmas Camp” by Karen Schaler | Holiday romance
- “Snowed In” by Rachel Hawthorne | Young Adult
- “The Holiday Swap” by Zara Stoneley | Holiday getaway
- “Winter Street” Series by Elin Hilderbrand | Family dysfunction
- “Christmas Letters” by Debbie Macomber | Holiday romance
- “Let it Snow” by John Green, Lauren Myracle, & Maureen Johnson | Young Adult
- “Christmas Jars” by Jason F. Wright | Holiday inspiration
- “The Christmas Train” by David Baldacci | Holiday inspiration
- “Dashing Through the Snow” by Mary & Carol Higgins Clark | Holiday mystery
- “The Christmas Town” by Donna VanLiere | Holiday inspiration
- “The Mistletoe Inn” by Richard Paul Evans | Holiday romance
- “The 13th Gift” by Joanne Hulst Smith | Holiday inspiration
- “Christmas at Little Beach Bakery Street” by Jenny Colgen | Festive, whimsical
- “Mr. Dickens and His Carol” by Samantha Silva | Holiday classic with a twist
And, if you’re still reading — thank you! — I wanted to share a new item in my Etsy Shop: Holiday bookmarks! They are digital, so you can print them at your leisure. I made them specifically to put inside books I’m giving as gifts this year.
Use this link and get 50% off the bookmark set of six designs, making it just $2, all month long. Seasons readings!