Welcome to my Twelve Books for Christmas blog. Over these first twelve days of December I'll be introducing you to twelve romance books to warm your heart and make you feel all Christmassy. :) They'll all make wonderful presents for a friend, or you could even treat yourself.
My Christmas book today is Christmas Kisses, a sweet collection of love stories by Alison May. Alison is a romance novelist, creative writing tutor and a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association.
Three girls, three kisses, three gorgeous Christmas stories.
Holly hates Christmas with a passion and can't wait to escape it - but then the flight to her once-in-a-lifetime holiday destination is cancelled.
Cora has had the year from hell, and faces a bleak Christmas working in Golding's department store - in the most unflattering reindeer costume imaginable.
Jessica is in denial after her husband's betrayal, and can't help but think back to when her life still seemed so full of hope and promise ...Three years from hell, three sets of broken dreams, three girls in desperate need of Christmas spirit.
Is the perfect Christmas kiss all it takes?
Includes Holly's Christmas Kiss, Cora's Christmas Kiss and Jessica's Christmas Kiss.
Alison is a novelist, short story writer, blogger and creative writing tutor who grew up in North Yorkshire, and now lives in Worcester. She worked as a waitress, a shop assistant, a learning adviser, an advice centre manager, a freelance trainer, and now a maker-upper of stories.
She won the RNA’s Elizabeth Goudge trophy in 2012, and her short stories have been published by Harlequin, Choc Lit and Black Pear Press. Her romantic comedies, Sweet Nothing, Midsummer Dreams, and the Christmas Kisses series are published by Choc Lit. Alison has been shortlisted in the Love Stories and RoNA Awards.
I asked Alison to tell us a bit about her family's festive traditions.
Do you have any favourite family Christmas traditions? If so, what are they?
That’s tricky, because I don’t think of my family as having a lot of set traditions, and then if I spend Christmas somewhere else I realise that we must have loads, because I’m absolutely certain that other families do it wrong! A couple of things I knew growing up were different from my friends – no TV on Christmas day, and so much more food that you would think it was possible to each. The first year that my husband spent Christmas at my parents’ house he couldn’t believe the way the food just kept come. Turkey and all the trimmings obviously, and then Christmas pudding (or fruit pie, or ice cream), and then cheese and savoury biscuits, and then chocolate biscuits and mints. And then you might just about have time to do the washing up before you get offered a mince pie to tide you over until teatime. So yeah… that’s a lot of food!
When do you open your Christmas presents?
For preference as early as possible on Christmas Day, but you can’t start opening presents until everyone is up, which makes me very frustrated when we stay with my husband’s family and his brother tries to have a lie-in, when I’m sitting in the lounge with all my presents gathered on the floor around me waiting to get started.
Ooh, I don't think I'd be able to wait, Alison!
If you could invite any author living or dead to share your Christmas lunch, who would it be?
Well I’m not sure inviting a dead author would be particularly festive. They’d probably be all smelly and peeling, unless they were working a ‘Ghost of Christmas Past’ vibe in some way. That would be seasonal at least I suppose. Actually this question is too hard – I think inviting a random author who you’ve never met for Christmas dinner might just be a bit odd, and choosing between the authors I know in real-life seems unfair, so maybe it’s better to just let the authors spend Christmas in their own homes where it’s safe and I’m not there demanding that they dress like festive-themed literary ghosts.
What book would you like to find in your Christmas stocking?
Oh, so many. There’s a couple of books that I’ve got in ebook from this year that I’d love to get a print copy of – Kate Johnson’s Max Seventeen for one. I’m reading Natasha Solomon’s The Novel in the Viola at the moment, and there’s a couple of others by her that I haven’t read yet so I’d love either of those. She’s an awesome writer. What I’d love most of all though would be something by a brilliant author I’ve never come across before and who has a massive back catalogue I can go on to lose myself in. I’m open to suggestions!
What is the most unusual Christmas present you’ve ever had/given?
I always struggle to remember presents I’ve received – which just goes to show that the presents are really not the most important bit of Christmas. I generally remember what I’ve given better, simply because Christmas shopping is a whole big thing for my sister and me. We’ve been Christmas shopping together since we were children, and what started as half an hour with a pound from my mum to get something for our grandparents is now a whole five day shopping extravaganza. We had a shared phase of always buying our aunt comedy kitchenware – Flintstones salt and pepper shakers, a spaceman jelly mould, that sort of thing. I don’t think we had any reason to believe that she particularly wanted comedy kitchenware, but we just kept buying her it.
You can find out more about Alison at www.alison-may.co.uk,
on facebook at www.facebook.com/AlisonMayAuthor,
or by following her on Twitter @MsAlisonMay
Thanks for dropping by, Alison. :)
Bring a little sunshine into your life!
Sassy, feel good romance by Karen King. Just right to cosy up with on cold winter nights. Published by Accent Press