Wednesday, March 4, 2015

#Review: A Sweet Montana Christmas by Roxanne Snopek - 4 Wine Glasses

23433946Title: A Sweet Montana Christmas 
Series: This Old House #2
Author: Roxanne Snopek 
Format: eBook, 130 pages
Published: November 14th 2014 by Tule Publishing
Links: Goodreads | Amazon
Reviewer: Linda
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 Wine Glasses

Melinda Sweet loved her husband before she learned of his wealth and she loves him still, despite the fact that it’s gone. Unfortunately, while she knows the collapse of his Chicago financial services business had nothing to do with him, he believes otherwise. His upbeat adjustment to their new – and temporary – life on his grandfather’s rundown honey farm is a foil to cover the burden of failure. She wasn’t expecting to throw – in five weeks – the traditional Sweet Christmas Open House, but it’s a good earning opportunity and how hard could it be?

Austin Sweet is determined to make his wife proud of him again. But he also wants to erase the sting of shame he feels from his parents, to whom he owes a debt of gratitude for arranging for this caretaking job. Getting paid to fix up this disaster is better than living in their basement, sure. But what does he know about bees? Or fixing broken plumbing? Or cleaning a chimney?

But when Austin’s grandfather gives him the farm as a Christmas gift, there’s only one response. Accepting the gift will secure a future that will make his wife even more unhappy than he already is. Refusing the gift will finalize the rift between him and his family, but he’d rather lose them than Melinda. Then he discovers she’s spared him the choice. Austin’s not-so-Sweet side rears up as he determines that he’s done trying to make everyone happy. He’ll get his wife back, no matter what. And they’ll decide their future together.

Linda's Thoughts:
If a man moves to the forest, and his wife isn't there to share his spaghetti-os, are they still married?

A SWEET MONTANA CHRISTMAS by Roxanne Snopek is a wonderful, sweet Christmas romance. It's the sixth story in the Montana Born Christmas series, but it can be fully enjoyed as a standalone. 

A SWEET MONTANA CHRISTMAS is the second chance at love story of Austin and Melinda Sweet, a married couple who had separated after going through a rough time when Austin's business, Sweet and Morgan Financial Services, had to close its doors during the economic downturn. It's the story of a couple discovering how to communicate again and learning that it's more important to have each other -that, when you evaluate what really matters in life, accumulated stuff is not in the running.

Melinda had gone to stay with her mother when Austin moved out and took over the running of his father's dilapidated farm in Marietta, Montana. She was not ready, though, to give up on their marriage - however broken it may be - and she shows up unannounced on his doorstep hoping that the secret she has not yet shared with him, will cause Austin to give their marriage another chance.

Austin is a broken man. He feels worthless because he has lost social standing in the community and can no longer be the primary breadwinner. Coping with the furious investors - many of whom had been friends - and going through bankruptcy has been the last straw. When his parents offer him the chance to run their farm and fix up the place before they sell it, he jumps at the chance leaving his wife behind. She was used to the finer things in life and he knew she wouldn't want to live in the fixer-upper cabin that he would be living in. But... then he finds her on his doorstep...

Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from this read:

The great conundrum: sex makes men feel loved; communication makes women feel loved.

"Mel," he murmured against her cheek, "everything I need in the world is right here, in my arms."

"No smiling!" said Melinda. "Look stern, everyone."...
He kissed her. "Our American Gothic."
"Sweet Montana Farms style." And she kissed him back.

One of my favorite scenes was when Melinda discovered that a supporting character's son was on the autism spectrum. My son is on the autism spectrum and it's rare to see it mentioned in books. I appreciated that Melinda processed that knowledge and did not change how she treated the mother and son as evidenced by this short excerpt:

The deliberate cadence of Jade's speech, plus the subtle behavioral tics suggested a spot on the autism spectrum. Her opinion of Samara went up another notch.

This is a book that educates without letting the reader know that they're learning. I discovered interesting information about raising bees for honey AND raising baby goats AND about baking reading this book! No worries, it's totally painless and quite entertaining!

Roxanne's writing is captivating with genuine, relatable characters set in the mountains at Christmastime. Can a sprinkling of Christmas magic and surprising news repair their broken marriage? You'll have to read this charming tale to find out! I highly recommend A SWEET MONTANA CHRISTMAS to anyone who enjoys contemporary, warm-fuzzy romances.

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