Three former Navy SEALs
Injured in the line of duty
Desperate for a new beginning…
Searching for a place to call their own.
Single mom and Revival Ranch’s on-site therapist Monica Finley has dedicated her life to helping brave servicemen and women, but former Navy SEAL Gabe Cortez is the one man whose shell she just can’t crack. Yet with the holidays fast approaching, she may finally have a plan. In a bid to get Gabe to open up, she’ll ask for as much help as possible―cutting down the Christmas tree, stringing lights, the whole nine yards.
Who could possibly be a Grinch with so much holiday cheer in the air?
Gabe has always hated Christmas―the holiday never fails to remind him just how alone he truly is. But the more time he spends with Monica and her young son, the more he finds himself drawn to their cozy little family…and the more he begins to realize his long-suppressed Christmas dreams may finally be coming true.
Ms. Helm clearly saved the best for last–I loved Monica and Gabe’s story! The previous two books (this could be read as a standalone, but do yourself a favor and read all three) teased a Monica-and-Gabe pairing, but even so I didn’t suspect the awesomeness that was in store for us 🙂
Gabe’s been hiding all kinds of issues behind his smiles and easygoing charm, and though those closest to him suspect that there’s something there, it’s Monica, the ranch therapist who he’s the most determined to keep away from. He. Doesn’t. Need. A. Shrink.
Though he does rather like her kid…and darn it, he’s more than a little attracted to her as well. Kicking and screaming doesn’t even begin to cover how it is that Gabe gets drawn into this slow burn romance–there’s also relentlessly cheerful Christmas bedding, a Montana blizzard, and a llama–and that’s just scratching the surface of it.
Monica is a widow and a recovering (okay, she’s not doing a very good job of recovering. But she tries. Kind of) helicopter parent where her ten-year-old son is concerned. She’s attracted to Gabe and more than ready to move on after her loss, but has convinced herself that getting involved with one of the ex-military men at the ranch would destroy her credibility as the staff therapist. (Now that I think about it, I’m not 100% sure this issue was resolved…? It didn’t seem like that big a problem anyway, so that’s probably okay…) I loved watching her try to forge a relationship with Gabe, even though at times it was as painful to read as it was wonderful at others.
Let’s just say the man does a darn good grovel, and it’s fortunate for everyone that he does–even if he did have help. (He needed it. Good grief, the man practically tried to incinerate all the bridges in Montana when he pushed her away…)
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.