If You Like….
Apologies! I’d meant to have this particular list up last week, but life intervened. So, better late than never, if you like historical holiday-themed novels, you’ll probably like….
— Mary Balogh’s A Christmas Promise, a classic Regency marriage of convenience story with a holiday twist;
— Jo Beverley’s Christmas Angel, another Regency marriage of convenience from a master of the genre;
— More Jo Beverley, in this case Winter Fire, a Georgian-set romance. It’s part of her Malloren series, but I read this one– and loved it– before I’d read any of the others in the series;
— Eloisa James’s An Affair Before Christmas, part of her Desperate Duchesses series, also Georgian (I do love the Georgians);
— Carla Kelly’s Marian’s Christmas Wish, a very sweet, traditional Regency;
— One of my regular Christmas re-reads used to be Judith McNaught’s Regency-set short story, “Miracles”, in A Holiday of Love;
— Inching forward to the Victorians, Lisa Kleypas’s A Wallflower Christmas, the follow-up to her wildly successful Victorian-set Wallflowers quartet (although non-Christmas related, my two favorite Wallflower books are Secrets of a Summer Night and The Devil in Winter);
— Moving from romance to mystery, there’s Deanna Raybourn’s latest installment in her Lady Julia series, Silent Night, a Christmas-themed novella;
— Tracy Grant’s His Spanish Bride, which takes place in December, ending just at Christmas, a prequel novella to her Malcolm and Suzanne series;
— Stephanie Barron’s Jane and the Wandering Eye, one of her wonderful Jane Austen mysteries, set around Christmas 1804;
— Rhys Bowen’s The Twelve Clues of Christmas, the latest in her Jazz Age-set Royal Spyness series;
— Mystery novelist Anne Perry has written a mind-boggling number of Victorian-set Christmas stories (rather like Debbie Macomber’s Angel books, I tend to get rather confused when trying to remember which is which): there’s Silent Nights: Two Victorian Christmas Mysteries, A Christmas Homecoming, A Christmas Odyssey, and A Christmas Promise, to name just a few.
I know I’ve left out a mind-boggling number of books– and half of them will hit me once I’ve published this post. Help! What are your favorite historical holiday reads?
Three regency Christmas romances come to mind:
1) Jo Beverly’s short story Jane Austen and the Mistletoe Kiss, residing in the anthology Jane Austen Made Me Do It, edited by Laurel Ann Nattress, comes to mind. I thought this one was by far and away the class of the collection.
2) The Toymaker by Kay Springsteen. Is this the 3rd time I’ve mentioned this one? It is that wonderful! I can’t remember the last time I got so emotionally caught up in the characters as I did with this one. One of the finest Christmas Christmas stories I have ever read.
3) The Partridge and the Peartree by Patricia Kiyono, a bright and beautiful romantic Christmas novella.
How could I overlook The Mischief of the Mistletoe? Apparently a LOT of other critics and readers feel the same way! That was my grand entrance into the Pink Carnation series.
Of course “The Mischief of the Mistletoe” and also Bernard Cornwell’s “Sharpe’s Christmas”.
Jeffrey, I can’t wait to find so highly reccomended “The Toymaker”.
My favorite Jo Beverley set during the holidays is Forbidden Magic.
As a big time fan of the Malory series by Johanna Lindsay, I like The Present. The whole Malory clan meets at the family seat for Christmas. It is a pretty entertaining (and fast) read if you like that series! But I think you would have to know those characters rather well for the story to make sense!
Also a big fan of Mischief of the Misltoe! A great Christmas read!
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