It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (Reads) GIVEAWAY: The Christmas Kiss (+ guest post)

Posted November 30, 2020 by meezcarrie in Author Interview, Christmas, contemporary, giveaway, It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (Reads) 2020, romance, Virginia McCullough / 17 Comments

today’s book: The Christmas Kiss

Welcome to another post in my annual blog series spotlighting new and recently-released Christmas reads! (Over 50 this year – And I’m SO EXCITED about it!)

Christmas is only 25 days away (YAY!!!) and I think we all could benefit from some extra Christmas cheer this year, right? Continuing through just before Christmas, I’m going to spotlight several new/recent Christmasy releases. So… snuggle in, grab your fave hot beverage and comfiest blanket, turn on some Christmas tunes and start your bookish Christmas list! Oh… and did I mention there are GIVEAWAYS with EACH POST in this series??!! (Because authors are awesome!)

Today’s featured book is a sweet contemporary romance in a beautiful Christmasy setting! You can check out my review of this book HERE.

Back to Bluestone River #3
GENRE: Contemporary Romance (Clean & Wholesome)
PUBLISHER: Harlequin Heartwarming
RELEASE DATE: December 1, 2019
PAGES: 384

Will working together

…lead to together forever?

Recently divorced, Parker Davis needs to focus on his new job so he can provide a stable home for his daughter in time for the Christmas holidays. The problem is, he’s frequently at odds with his boss. He and Emma O’Connell approach everything differently. Yet he finds her intriguing, and Bluestone River festivities keep pushing them together—often enough that two people at odds could find themselves evenly matched in love!


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the serenity of winter days

by Virginia McCullough, author of The Christmas Kiss

Regardless of what the calendar says, when Thanksgiving rolls around in my part of the world, winter is upon us. For many, this lovely holiday serves as the kickoff to the hoopla of the season. Even the shopping days have names! In the frenzy of the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day we sometimes forget that winter is a timeout for Mother Nature. Like fields and trees and plants of all kinds, we have a tendency to slow down during this darker time of the year. In the upper Midwest where I live, it’s often a time when the landscape is blanketed in white with gray-brown and forest green accents. A single night of quiet snowfall can bring a sense of peace if we slow down and enjoy it.

I’ve been fortunate to experience the serene side of winter holidays while living in many different places that exude it, including coastal Maine, the Chesapeake Bay, the mountains of Western North Carolina, and several Chicago neighborhoods, and for one Christmas week, Reykjavik, Iceland. Here in Green Bay, Wisconsin I’m surrounded by both urban and rural walking trails and wildlife sanctuaries.

From ancient times, we’ve been bringing in light during dark winter days. This often creates its own kind of serenity. It’s no wonder we think of sprites and fairies in the wonderland of winter. And romance, too, of course. In A CHRISTMAS KISS, Emma O’Connell and Parker Davis are enjoying their new romance when they join the crowd at Bluestone River’s covered bridge for an evening of caroling. The bridge, an important landmark in town, is all dressed up in lights—so romantic. Emma hasn’t danced since she’s had to use a cane to walk, but that doesn’t stop Parker from coaxing her to dance with in him in the snow:

Parker picked up her hand hidden in thick, fleece-lined gloves. “There must be real fingers in here.” He gently drew her as close as their puffy down jackets would allow. “I’ve got you, Emma. I won’t let you fall.”…

The crowd was singing the first bars of “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas.” Parker smiled. “Hear that? They’re playing your favorite song.”

Parker took small steps at first, making a slow circle on the even snow cover and swaying to the slow rhythm. He softly sang the words about hearing sleigh bells in the snow. With every step Emma relaxed a little more in his arms, trusting him, but mostly trusting herself.

(I still sigh over that dance scene.) A CHRISTMAS KISS ends on Christmas Eve with the grand reopening of the Hidden Lake Bird Sanctuary. The sanctuary now has a boardwalk running through many acres of woods. Parker and his crew have strung lights on the boardwalk and the evening culminates with lighting up the forest.

The chanting stopped abruptly when the white fairy-lights on the pier lit up… bringing the first exclamations from the crowd. Then, all two hundred plus people looked behind them and a collective ah rippled through the crowd in response to the intricate outline of lights wrapped around the boardwalk railings and snaking through the woods. Gusts of wind sent lights and tree branches swaying and changing the patterns. The boardwalk light show succeeded in showing the woods in constant motion. The lit up buildings completed the wonderland image.

Emma let out a long sigh. “Kind of makes you believe wood sprites and fairies are flitting about, doesn’t it?”

My sentiment exactly. I hope your holiday season will be filled with joy and fun, and a little romance, even during this difficult year. But don’t miss a chance to soak up the serenity of the winter days and nights.

Virginia McCullough is the author of many novels, including six Harlequin Heartwarming romances. A CHRISTMAS KISS is book 2 of her Back to Bluestone River series. Visit her at and join her mailing list at

Virginia McCullough is offering a print copy of each book in the Back to Bluestone River series to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.

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What about you? What makes you want to read The Christmas Kiss by Virginia McCullough? Do you have a place that brings you serenity during winter & Christmas?

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17 responses to “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (Reads) GIVEAWAY: The Christmas Kiss (+ guest post)

  1. Anne

    This story sounds wonderful, unforgettable and beautiful. A place that brings me peace and serenity is the foothills where I live.

  2. Trixi

    I like the opposites attract angle of this! Those are fun to read 🙂

    Thank you for the giveaway chance, Carrie!

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