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Monday, November 29, 2010

The Jingle Bell Jinx : A Holiday Novel Byte by Linda Palmer

The Jingle Bell Jinx : A Holiday Novel Byte by Linda V. Palmer
Publisher: Uncial Press
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Heat Level: Sweet
Length: Short Story (21 pgs)
Rating: 5 books
Reviewed by Orchid

~Arms full of packages, feet hurting, car gone. What next?~

When nineteen-year-old Raquel McKnight's car is stolen from the mall parking deck on Christmas Eve, she is sure that her family's jingle bell jinx has struck again. And then she runs into her eighth-grade beau Gabriel McKnight. Although his kisses say he never got over her, she can't help but wonder if he's somehow part of the jinx. Has the holiday hex finally come to an end? Or will she add a broken heart to a long list of Christmas calamity?

Raquel wants to know why Christmas always goes wrong for her?

Last year she lost the iPod given to her for Christmas. This year she’s stuck in a mall in Texas on Christmas Eve. Not the best place to be when your family is expecting you home. The festive season looks bleak. Her car’s been stolen and she has no way to get home. Then a silver lining appears on the horizon - or to be more precise arrives in the car park elevator.

Raquel and Gabe dated some years before, but their fathers got posted to different places and they lost touch. Now he’s turned up just at the right time. He and his father help to Raquel sort out her problem then Gabe takes her to his family home. Raquel wonders whether Gabe still has feelings for her. She’s not sure what she feels for him.

Raquel is self sufficient. She’s broken away from her father calling the shots and refused to allow him to coerce her with money. This doesn’t mean she doesn’t love him dearly, but like a lot of daughters she feels going to college is an ideal time to leave the nest. Gabe is more grown up than the last time she saw him, but still the kind thoughtful person she knew. His family tease him about his time with Raquel.

For me this story gave one possible future to what happens when a teenage romance fails but you meet again several years later?

The two main characters are in college so not quite adult, but definitely more mature than the last time they met. Christmas adds a sprinkle of miracle dust to the situation and then it’s up to the them to decide how they want to go forward from here.

This short story was very well written. I could see the poor young lady standing alone in the parking lot late on Christmas Eve. She wonders what to do next and feels wary when a young man exits the elevator. The scene seamlessly slid into my mind without a lot of description spoiling the vision. Both main characters were well portrayed and a pleasure to read about. I liked The Jingle Bell Jinx. The story grabbed my imagination and held on to it. The festive season also came across well with family values and longing to be with friends and family. Well worth a read.