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That Christmas Feeling

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That Christmas Feeling

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Wishes come true this holiday season in this heartwarming collection of three stories from your favorite Harlequin Superromance authors.A Dundee ChristmasA woman seeking refuge in a strange town...
Wishes come true this holiday season in this heartwarming collection of three stories from your favorite Harlequin Superromance authors.A Dundee ChristmasA woman seeking refuge in a strange town...
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  • Wishes come true this holiday season in this heartwarming collection of three stories from your favorite Harlequin Superromance authors.

    A Dundee Christmas

    A woman seeking refuge in a strange town during a snowstorm is taken in by a man who helps her discover that home is where the love is.

    We Need a Little Christmas

    A prodigal son returning to his family ranch meets a woman with an unconventional way of bringing the holiday spirit into their town and hearts.

    Kiss Me, Santa

    The battle's on between a reclusive widower and the single mom determined to open his heart and banish his Grinch-like behavior.

  • From the book

    When the rattletrap truck crested the slight rise that showed Dundee, Idaho, looking stark and barren beneath several feet of snow, Cierra Romero nearly swore. She would have--those words were the easiest English to remember because she'd even heard them growing up in Guatemala--except she'd promised God that if He got her safely to this town, she'd leave all the bad habits she'd picked up behind. "Fu...dge! You gotta be freakin' kidding me!"

    The farmer and his teenage son who'd brought her all the way from where her last ride had ended--a place called Boise--glanced at each other and started laughing.

    Cierra lowered her eyelids but watched them as closely as she could without being obvious. She'd heard that expression a lot since coming to the States. Had she said it wrong? Or was it merely that they had never heard those words spoken with a Spanish accent?

    She didn't know, but now that they were making fun of her, she was glad she hadn't bothered to listen when they'd given their names. Cierra made it a habit not to grow too familiar with people if she could help it. Especially white people. These men would drop her off in Dundee and go to whatever place they'd mentioned--the name had been unintelligible to her--and she'd never see them again.

    It was better not to get attached. To anything. She'd even had to find a new home for the kitten Charlie had bought her when she arrived in Las Vegas--because all her dreams had died when he did, including her ability to take care of anyone or anything she loved. Maybe she'd never been fond of her American fiancé.

    She hadn't gotten to know him well enough for that. Almost fifty years her senior, he'd chosen her from a bride website, and although he'd brought her to the U.S. more than two months ago, he'd spent most of that time in his office, running his business.

    Still, she mourned him. Maybe he was as perverted as some people--those who disapproved--claimed he was for wanting to marry someone so much younger. But he'd been kind to her and, with the money he'd sent, generous to the three younger sisters who were living on their own in a squalid flat back home, counting on her to provide for them. Too bad he'd had a stroke and died the day before the wedding. If he hadn't encountered some complications with finishing up his divorce, they would've been married right after she arrived, and she wouldn't be floating around America on an expired visa, hoping to find a way out of her desperate circumstances.

    "Dundee ain't what you expected?" the farmer said.

    Hadn't she already made that clear?

    Remembering that she didn't want to upset anyone, that she was living in this country only by the grace of God and would be sent back to utter hopelessness if anyone turned her in, she averted her eyes to hide her flare of temper. She might be as feisty as any Latina princess--at least, that was what her parents used to tell her before malaria took them to their graves. But she knew she had to appear somewhat docile if she wanted to get along as a foreigner in such a small community. "It will be fine."

    "But you don't even have a suitcase."

    Because she'd had to leave it when she caught the man who'd given her a ride to Salt Lake City hiding behind the building the moment they stopped for gas, using his cell phone when he said he'd be in the restroom. Afraid he was calling to report her, she'd run off, abandoning her clothes, toiletries and extra money, which were still locked in his trunk.

    "Someone waits for me," she said, and desperately hoped that was true. Arlene, Charlie's ex-wife, hadn't been the nicest person...

About the Author-

  • Most writers say they've had stories running around in their head since they can remember, but that wasn't the case for Brenda. She grew up thinking she didn't have a creative bone in her body. She considered herself "left-brained," with talents in science and mathematics, and even went to school for business.

    It wasn't until she was 29 and married with three kids that she discovered writing-- and if not for a difficult situation that prompted her to find a way to make money from home, she might not have started even then.

    Brenda was a loan officer for a mortgage company when she caught her in-home daycare provider drugging her children with cough medicines and Tylenol to get them to sleep while she was gone. They'd been waking up several times in the night and she couldn't figure out why. Except for the baby, they were too old for that. But once she found the medicine in her baby's bottle, she suspected the baby-sitter had been doing this for several months.

    No longer able to trust someone else with her children's well-being, Brenda quit her job to stay home with them--but her husband's business was failing and she needed to find some way to help him financially. That's when she decided to write a book.

    It wasn't the "quick fix" the Novaks were hoping for. It took her five years to teach herself the craft and to finish her debut novel, Of Noble Birth, published in November 1999. But it introduced her to something she loves to do more than anything else. Shortly after she sold Of Noble Birth, she sold three books to Harlequin's Superromance line, the first of which, Expectations, came out in February 2000.

    Now she has five children; three girls and two boys, and juggles her writing career with softball games and field trips, carpool runs and homework sessions, and trying to keep up with her active husband. Fortunately, her family is as involved in what she does as she is in their activities. Her husband or one of her daughters sometimes go to conferences with her, they put stamps on the postcards she sends to her mailing list when she has a new book come out, and they come to all her book signings.

    Her oldest, Ashley, throws her backpack down when she gets home from school and immediately joins Brenda at her computer, wanting to hear the latest installment on her current work in progress. Ashley gives Brenda valuable feedback, and so does her husband, who hears the same pages when he comes home from work. Now, as a family, the Novaks look back on those hard times when Brenda was just starting out and are grateful that something so good came out of it.

    Brenda loves to hear from fellow romance enthusiasts. You can contact her at P.O. Box 3781, Citrus Heights, CA, 95611 or via her web site at
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That Christmas Feeling
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Brenda Novak
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