Reviewed by Heather C
Title: Letters at Christmas
Author: Amber Lin
Series: Men of Fortune #1
Hero/Heroine: Hale Martin/Sidony Harbeck
Genre: MF Historical Romance
Length: 64 pages
Release Date: July 7, 2014
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: London, 1815
Three London Seasons. Three Christmases come and gone. Jilted Sidony Harbeck is done waiting for the inconstant Captain Hale Martin to return. Despite their whispered adolescent promises, he never wrote her a single letter. Now the scoundrel has returned, professing his love and a thoughtless bet to woo her, but she only wants him to suffer.
After three years at sea, Hale finally has the means to marry his best friend’s sister and the love of his life. But he only has three days to convince her of his devotion because he stupidly proposes a wager – he’ll convince Sidony to marry him by Christmas or he’ll leave her alone forever.
When Hale sets out to seduce her, the stakes are raised by a passion so intense that Sidony must risk her heart no matter the odds.
Previously published in A Very Scandalous Holiday Anthology
Months ago I read Falling for the Pirate, the second book in the Men of Fortune series. At the time, I was able to grab Letters at Christmas for free at Amazon, so I’ve been hanging on…waiting for Christmastime to get myself in the right mood to read Hale’s story!
Three years ago, Hale Martin left Sidony Harbeck, the love of his life, to go make a name for himself, promising to return after one year and marry her. Not only is his return two years late, but Sidony never once received a letter from Hale. Now, Hale my must win back Sidony’s affections and convince her to become his wife. But Sidony is still hurting with mistrust and fear that Hale will leave her again.
This was a sweet little Christmas story. I was cracking up with the opening scene where Sidony was stuck in a tree after falling from her window chasing after her cat. Then a friend told me this is a common tool used in Regency romances where the heroine somehow gets herself trapped in a tree and can only be rescued by the dashing hero. My excitement dimmed after that.
I usually don’t like reunited lovers plots much, but I was intrigued to discover why Sidony and Hale were separated and why it took him three years to return…but I was most curious as to why he didn’t write to Sidony not once while he was gone! Okay, I had my suspicions what he had really been doing all along…but WHY???!!! Then there was that “ah-ha” moment when I understood his reasons and I easily forgave since it truly was for honorable and selfless reasons.
What bothered me was how quickly Sidony and Hale reconciled! She kept telling him “no” to his marriage proposal, but kept giving him her body. And then suddenly she forgave him! Eh! I don’t think I can believe the suddenness in her change of heart.
In the end, it’s an enjoyable little Christmas short story with the perfect amount of sexiness. I’m looking forward to more from this series.
Overall Impression: I Liked It
*I provided my own, personal copy of this book for review.*