Christmas Romance Review: Home In Time for Christmas by Heather Graham
Published by MIRA on 10/26/2010
Genres: Adult, Holiday Romance, Romance
Buy the Book • Goodreads
Melody Tarleton is driving home for Christmas when a man–clad in Revolutionary War-era costume–appears out of nowhere, right in the path of her car. Shaken, she takes the injured stranger in, listening with concern to Jake Mallory’s fantastic claim that he’s a Patriot soldier executed by British authorities.Bringing Jake to her parents’ house, Melody concocts a story to explain the handsome holiday guest with the courtly manners and strange clothes. Mark, her close friend who wishes he were more, is skeptical, but her family is fascinated. So is Melody. Jake is passionate, charming and utterly unlike anyone she’s ever met. Can he really be who he claims? And can a man from the distant past be the future she truly longs for?
While I didn’t dislike Home In Time for Christmas, it wasn’t without its faults. A very cute Christmas read, if you can step outside of reality for a second – and forget a thing or two you learned in middle school history class.
Home In Time for Christmas centers around Jake and Melody, two people from very different times. Jake, a colonist from the 18th century, abruptly finds himself in 21st century Massachusetts, rather than the end of the noose from which he was dangling, right when Melody hits him with her car on a snowy, slick day. Thus begin a series of “I-don’t-believe-yous” and “This-can’t-be-reals” while Jake just wants to find a way home to his sister, feeling guilty for leaving her behind.
So…I like Christmas romance novels. There is something sweet about them that just makes my heart melt (and it’s hard to do that, no lie). I typically don’t deal well with insta-love in books, but Christmas romances work well for me because the season makes me feel squishy inside, so…I guess I can accept it LOL. Home In Time for Christmas was fun to read; the interplay between Melody and Jake was great, and actually, there was no feeling of insta-love (although timeline-wise, I guess not much time passes, so technically, it all still happens pretty fast) and their verbal sparring was entertaining. I also had a good time reading the repartee between Melody and the rest of her family; they are definitely an odd family, but odd families are always fun at Christmas.
The plot, while obviously not believable, because DUH, time travel isn’t possible as far as I know, was interesting and had a bit of the paranormal, which is something that really speaks to me. So now we’ve got Christmas + romance + paranormal. Should equal win, right?
It didn’t, not quite. Things went along rather swimmingly, with the exception of two things, and they are things I just can’t get past. Remember how I said forget what you learned in middle school history? Well, in this story, Jake was being hanged in 1776, right after the Declaration of Independence was signed. He tells Melody all about the time period, and also discusses the Constitution. But….the Constitution wasn’t written for more than a decade later! Believe me, I know, I’ve seen it, it lives only about 20 miles from me. It surprises me that not only did the author get this detail wrong, but it passed through the editors and publisher as well.
The other thing that bothered me was the ending. I liked where it ended, but getting there in the last couple of chapters just felt like Graham was dragging it out for the sake of getting a few more words in the book. At one point, I was just rolling my eyes, like, get on with it already. So while I liked the book – a lot really – these two sticking points (and the numerous typos found all throughout the book – Harlequin, what’s up with that, I paid for this thing!) were enough to drop the rating from maybe a 3 ½ to a 2.
That said, I did enjoy it, and I think anyone who enjoys Christmas + Romance will enjoy Home In Time for Christmas, so I still recommend it.