The Christmas Baby Surprise at Thanksgiving

Title: The Christmas Baby Surprise
Author: Shirley Jump
Harlequin Romance
Published: October 2013
Reasons I might actually remember this one: It’s been a couple of months, and what lingers are the cosy feeling of the run-down inn setting, and the Sisterhood of We All Have Rocks (the heroine’s backstory involves a set of childhood friends).
In spite of the title, Christmas does not actually happen in this book. The last chapter, in fact, takes place at Thanksgiving, and by then the hero and heroine are back together and he’s on board with the whole pregnancy thing, so I’m not sure who would have been left to be surprised by Christmas. Santa, maybe. “Ho, ho…wait, you’re PREGNANT?”
This is one of those cosy, “saving a business/hotel/renovating a house” Harlequins. (And yes: that’s a thing. I have at least three books on my shelves that fit that description.) It’s one of my favourite set-ups, for some reason. I automatically like any hero or heroine who sees the importance of restoring old buildings or saving small businesses. And there is something so (I know I keep using this word) COSY about it all.
I don’t usually have much sympathy with heroes who come over all panicky when the heroine gets pregnant, because honestly, if you’re old enough to wield the stick you should be aware that THAT CAN HAPPEN, and prepared to either stay chaste or deal with your responsibilities. But this guy had enough credible backstory that I bought his reaction, and didn’t dislike him at all for it.
Active Ingredients:
Childhood Friends
Death of a Friend Encourages Re-Evaluation
Married But Drifting Apart
He Doesn’t Want Children
Renovations Will Bring Us Together
Fond Memories of a House (in this case, an Inn)
Thanksgiving Dinner

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