Author Katharine Ashe has complied a list of Christmas romances from a number of authors. My short story, Christmas Cookies for Tristan is included. Come choose a book to warm your heart and put you in the holiday mood.
Here’s a snippet from : Christmas Cookies for Tristan
Tristan tensed when he saw a striking auburn-haired woman hand her coat to a butler in the penthouse foyer and walk into the crowded living room. He’d never met her, he was certain, yet he felt instantly drawn to her. Despite his avoidance of female companionship over the past two years, his pulse quickened and the chatter of partygoers faded away as he watched her.
She wore a cranberry red dress with tiny cap sleeves that went surprisingly well with her mahogany hair. Smiling brightly, she exchanged air kisses with Johanna Cantrell, their hostess and Tristan’s distant cousin, who had opened up her lavish Park Avenue suite for this early Christmas party. So gracious of her, everyone agreed. Of course they all knew tonight’s party was aimed at garnering backers for the lady’s upcoming mayoral campaign.
The redhead had arrived unescorted. Was she a personal friend of Johanna’s or some high-placed business executive who might be convinced to throw her support behind the candidate? Tristan doubted it was the latter. She didn’t look old enough to fill such a role.
Curious to discover her identity, he edged his way through the crowd and followed the woman down a hall toward the kitchen, admiring the slender curves revealed by her subtly flowing skirt. Members of the catering staff buzzed past like worker bees, carrying empty food trays to be refilled and filled ones back out to the buffet table in the spacious living room, or salon as Cousin Johanna called it.
Pausing in the kitchen’s open doorway, Tristan leaned against the door jam and observed the redhead as she held out a large Christmas tin to a portly, bearded man in a white chef’s uniform.
“Please arrange these cookies on a tray and set them out with the other desserts,” she said in a low, smoky voice reminiscent of actress Kathleen Turner’s.
The man scowled. “Madame, I personally prepare all food for every event I cater, including the desserts.”
“Oh, but I baked these especially for tonight as a gift for Jo . . . I mean Mrs. Cantrell. She told me to bring them back here for you to serve.”
“I doubt that, young woman,” the pompous ass sneered. “That good woman knows I never allow anything prepared by another hand to be served at one of my events.”
“Are you calling me a liar?” The redhead’s voice shook slightly, either with distress or anger.
Having heard enough, Tristan strode to the woman’s side. “There you are. What’s taking so long? I want one of your famous cookies.”
She turned her head and stared at him with eyes as green as the emerald broach pinned to her demurely cut bodice. A light blush bloomed on her cheeks, lending her ivory features a delightful glow. “Do I know you, sir?”
“Not yet, but I’ve heard of you . . . and your cookies.”