today’s book: Love, Lies and Mistletoe
Welcome to the final post in my 4th annual blog series spotlighting new and recently-released Christmas reads! (We had over 50 this year but I still can’t believe it’s over already!)
Christmas is only TWO DAYS away – and this is the last of the Christmas Reads Giveaway for this year. I hope y’all have enjoyed this year’s book spotlights and guest posts! I couldn’t have done it without the fabulous authors providing their posts and giveaways & without y’all visiting each post & entering the giveaways in droves – i love the bookish community so much!
The final book for 2020 is a sweet contemporary Hallmark-style romance – plus author D.E. Malone talks about cherished recipes & Christmas magic! (PS – never fear – the Christmas Reads Giveaway will be back next year!)
LOVE, LIES AND MISTLETOE by D.E. Malone
SERIES: Blueberry Point Romance #2
GENRE: Sweet Contemporary Romance
RELEASE DATE: October 30, 2020
One stolen kiss. A little Christmas magic. And the snowy inn where love stands a chance.
Interior designer Layla Dean can’t believe her good fortune at snagging the holiday decorating gig at Blueberry Point Lodge. And even though her fledgling business has a growing list of happy clients, her personal life isn’t filled with the same Christmas magic. She needs a man in her life like she does coal in her stocking. But tell that to Brant Johnsson.
Brant is known as the Twin Cities’ Master of Lights and Luminaria for good reason. His company oversees most of the downtown’s outdoor displays every season. But when a professional snag sends him reeling, he’s ready to quit the business. Until he runs into Layla again. Forgetting their awkward mistletoe kiss last year just isn’t possible, but she doesn’t share the pleasant memory. Now that they’re decking the halls together for the newly opened inn’s first Christmas, Brant hopes for a replay of their first encounter. And something more.
When a misdirected text message pairs them together for a fundraising event, Brant and Layla find they have more in common than just a flare for holiday decorating and one mistaken kiss. If Layla can overcome her sour first impression, Brant might get his very merry second chance.
affiliate links used
Also available to read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited
BOOKS, COOKIES and a SPRINKLE OF HOLIDAY MAGIC
by D.E. Malone, author of Love, Lies and Mistletoe
Eating a cookie is like reading a good book. If only the pleasure lasted as long.
One of the characters in my latest novel, LOVE, LIES and MISTLETOE, would wholeheartedly agree with that sentiment. Layla Dean is the happy recipient of neighbor Marybelle Davis’s cookie platters on more than one occasion. Baking is one of the ways Marybelle cares for people. It’s her love language.
I bet you know a person or two who fits this description, don’t you?
Inspiration for Marybelle and her penchant for gifting cookies grew from my mother’s love of baking for others. It’s a gesture most people welcome even if it means freezing most of a cookie plate so they don’t disappear in a day. I know from experience.
If there was a signature cookie in my mother’s recipe box, it would be three-layer bars, a deceivingly simple name for a complicated and decadent little square of chocolatey goodness. The decades-old recipe card she gave me shortly after I married is a little worse for wear. Splatters of melted butter dot the slightly yellowed index card. A crusty smudge of something partially covers the word “coconut” too, so if you don’t know any better, nuts might be substituted by mistake for coconut, much to your detriment. Unless you love A LOT of nuts. There are more than a few chocolate smudges too.
I’ve thought of rewriting this recipe many times. My mom wrote it down in one long paragraph without the tidy list of ingredients before the instructions. Making the cookies is a process, involving freezing the layers more than once and a bain marie (thanks to The Great British Baking Show for that new-to-me term!). But the results are glorious. When I think of all the delectable treats she’s made in my life, this one is a hands-down family favorite. What makes it even more special is that it only appears at Christmas time.
There’s something transcendent about the recipes we share at Christmas time, isn’t there? As if a little holiday spirit has infused itself between the ingredients. In a key scene in LOVE, LIES and MISTLETOE, Marybelle’s stained-glass cookies and peanut butter blossoms bring Layla and her love interest Brant together again after a misunderstanding. Perhaps there’s a sprinkling of magic amongst the sugar, flour and vanilla in Marybelle’s kitchen. Either that or the smell of warm cookies are capable of melting even the frostiest of hearts.
I’ve known for a long time there’s magic in my mother’s cookies. When she’d arrange them on my grandmother’s crystal platter for our traditional Christmas Eve treat each year, a movie reel of memories stirred. Now she lives a thousand miles away so the cookies arrive by mail in boxes, nestled into pretty little tins lined with waxed paper and tissue printed with holly berries, nutcrackers or another festive design. And when I make them myself, the pleasure of crushing wafers, stirring melted chocolate and cutting the layered bars prolong the happiness of just eating them.
Almost as long as it takes to read a good book.
D.E. Malone writes sweet contemporary romance and is the author of the Hearts in Hendricks and Blueberry Point Romance series. She’s also written for young audiences as Dawn Malone, and her work has appeared in Highlights for Children, Pockets, and Chicken Soup for the Soul. A former newspaper reporter, she finds creating fictional worlds rather than writing about the real one more enjoyable. She loves traveling to places off the beaten path which inspire the small-town settings in her stories. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, hiking, cultivating weed patches and continuing her quest for the holy grail of bakeries. She lives in central Illinois with her husband and their Catahoula hound rescue dog. Find her on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram as dmalonebooks and visit her website www.demalone.com to learn more about her and subscribe to her newsletter. You’ll get a free Christmas novella too!
D.E. Malone is offering a $10 Amazon gift card to one of my readers! (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.
What about you? What makes you want to read Love, Lies and Mistletoe by D.E. Malone?