Zac never had a family of his own, but Rudy has enough to share.
Shy, inexperienced Rudy has a crush on Zac from the moment his new colleague walks through the door. On an office night out before Christmas, Rudy finds the courage to make a move, and they form a tentative bond. When he discovers Zac will be alone at Christmas, he invites Zac to come home with him.
Zac prefers to keep people at arm’s length. Yet when Rudy offers him a family Christmas it’s impossible to resist. With no parents of his own, Zac is pleasantly surprised to be welcomed by Rudy’s. The only drawback is that everyone assumes they’re a couple. Unwilling to disappoint Rudy’s mum and make Christmas awkward, they decide not to deny it.
It’s not a chore for Zac to pose as Rudy’s boyfriend, but the pretence makes him want things that scare him—things like a real relationship with Rudy. Zac’s suffered enough rejection in his life already and is afraid to risk his heart. If he can get over his past rejection and let Rudy inside his armour, he might get more for Christmas than he ever imagined.
180 e-book pages
Ratings are 1 to 5 stars and based mostly on GoodReads standards.
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It’s barely the middle of November (as of me writing this review), and I’m ready to haul out the Christmas ornaments and start guzzling spiked eggnog. This book is THAT GOOD.
A Family for Christmas is a relatively sweet, light read. Some angst. Some worry. Some mild non-communication only because of nervous angsty boys being nervous and angsty.
Rudy and Zac are all up in their own heads with the Christmas holidays looming. Rudy is crushing HARD and Zac has REAZONZZZ for not doing relationships. But a night of drunken flirty fun, inconvenient puking, and confessions in the dark lead Rudy to inviting Zac home to his parents’ for the holidays.
Their arrival at Rudy’s family homestead hit me in the head like an iron skillet. Twice.
The first time was because it felt reminiscent of Harry Potter’s first visit with the Weasley’s at The Burrow. What that was like for lone Harry/Zac finding himself in the midst of a large, loud, somewhat(!) eccentric, loving family. That wide-eyed wonder and nervousness with a longing to fit in with something so huge, something he’d always longed to be a part of.
The other wallop on the head was that Zac’s family celebrations were nearly spot-on to my own family’s. Though we’re not Weasley-like in any manner I can think of — we’re just a small family of three. But we invite all the neighbors and all manner of folks who’d otherwise be alone during the holidays. We grow into a boisterous crowd who enjoy each other’s company along with tons of great food, libations, and traditional English Christmas crackers. It’s how we roll. It makes Christmas a MASSIVE, loving, eclectic, drunken Norman Rockwellish event. I’m getting excited already just thinking about the upcoming festivities and everyone who’ll celebrate with us.
This book takes place over a very short time span of only a few days, but every ounce of the romance building felt authentic — not too fast or insta-love — just an organic quickness amid a lot of jubilant chaos. Rudy and Zac, while tentative and nervous in their attraction, are perfectly lovely, aware, honest…and um, *scorching hot* as they figure things out.
And, for the shortness of this, it managed to touch on all of my feels. It was reminiscent and fun, I laughed, I got tears in my eyes a few times, my heart beat a little fast at times, and I was rooting for Rudy and Zac from the get-go.
It’s holiday time folks, and this is a book that slots easily into one of the must-reads of the season.
About the Author:
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.
One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.
Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.
Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.
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