It Must Be Christmas: Three Holiday Stories
Jennifer Crusie, Donna Alward, and Mandy Baxter present three holiday stories in one volume: It Must Be Christmas.
I was a big fan of the first story, a slapstick action-thriller called “Hot Toy.” It was about a woman named Trudy who HAD to find a “Major McGuffin,” a G.I. Joe-like toy, for her nephew. This short story was witty and self-aware and perfectly captured the ridiculousness of holiday shopping.
“Christmas At Seashell Cottage” and “Christmas With The Billionaire Rancher” were less entertaining. The heroes and heroines of those two stories did a little too much song-and-dance around their relationship for my liking and lacked significant qualities that would have made them rounder and would have endeared them more to me. “Will-they-or-won’t-they” tales get tiresome after a while, mostly because the readers already know there’s a happy ending, so the conflict isn’t strong enough to stand on its own.
Each story was festive, but “Christmas With The Billionaire Rancher” could have happened outside of the holiday season, and it wouldn’t have mattered. Yet readers will find variety with this trio of tales: one silly, one sweet, and one steamy.
St. Martin's Paperbacks
Jennifer Crusie • Mandy Baxter • Donna Alward