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Celebrate Hanukkah and love with these bestselling books by Morgan Malone #hanukkah #bookseries

Title: Lights Of Love. A Dickens Holiday Romance

Author: Morgan Malone

Genre: Later-in-life, Hanukkah romance

Book Cover: Kris Norris

Book Blurb:

Saul Rosen has quite a reputation in Dickens. He has only recently become a full-time resident after decades of drifting into town for a skiing vacation, some summer cultural event, or to celebrate the Jewish Holidays at Congregation Etz Chaim. Saul is known as a supporter of local businesses, due largely to the years-long restoration of his vast country property. His frequent travels abroad have given him the world-weary air of international intrigue. His silver hair and bright blue eyes cause hearts to flutter. And he’s a bachelor.

Yehudit Eberhardt is also a recent full-time resident of Dickens. Mystery surrounds her, too. After decades living in New York City and Boston, her voice still carries the slightest trace of Europe. Her quiet elegance graces the halls and sanctuary of Etz Chaim, her laugh echoes in Morty’s Deli and her serene smile greets all she meets throughout the friendly town. Living high above the lights of Dickens in her exclusive condominium, Judy—as she is known to friends—seems to have a perfect life. But, as a recent widow, she lives alone, except for her beloved daughter’s frequent visits from Chicago.

Winter has come to Dickens and its famous Christmas spirit is on full display. Judy and Saul are thrown together as the Jewish community of Dickens prepares for Hanukkah. Judy is certain the spark she feels whenever she is near Saul is due to the static electricity of winter woolens. But Saul recognizes the currents of attraction and is drawn to her. Will these two solitary souls be able to ignore the shared losses that draw them together or will the gentle candles of the Hanukkah menorah light the love in their hearts?


Saul finally slumped back in his chair; his hands clasped around the empty coffee mug. His eyes held no tears, but his voice had become raspy with emotion. “Well, do you still think I’m a rogue who is not fit to make eyes at Yehudit?”

Morty shook his grizzled head. His expression was unread able as he leaned toward Saul.

“Well. Hell. I see your dilemma, Saul. And I feel your pain. But seriously, old man, you had a lot of chutzpah asking a woman, a French ballerina at that, to choose you over Rudolph Nureyev!” And Morty shook his head in his mournful way. Then, he grinned at Saul.

A stunned silence followed. Then Saul began to laugh. He laughed like he had not laughed in decades. Morty joined in, until finally Henry came from the kitchen with two glasses of water. “Drink up, you two crazy alterkockers, and then shut up, because you’re scaring the waitstaff.”

That, of course, brought more laughter from the two men, though much less raucous. When they finally got their breath back and had wiped mirthful tears from their eyes, Saul glared at his old friend. “So, what now? Do you want me to stay away from Judy? Just be cordial at shul and nothing else? I respect your opinion, Morty, and if you think I could possibly hurt her by expressing my interest in her, I’ll back off.”

“Well, Saul. I think you mean that. And I think you would try. But I’ve seen the way you look at her—and any woman who can get you into the kitchen without twisting your arm, can manage you. And I’ve seen the way she smiles at you. I haven’t seen her smile like that in the eleven months I’ve known her. So, I’m raising no objections, not that I have any standing, except I’m old school and I think she’s a really sweet lady. I’d hate to see her get hurt.” He wagged a long, crooked finger at Saul.

“I have no intention of hurting her, Morty. I also think she is a sweet, lovely lady. Right now, I’m just trying to get her to go to dinner with me.”

“She likes Antonelli’s. So that would be a good choice. And” —Morty’s eyes twinkled mischievously— “she plays mah-jongg on Wednesday nights.”

“Damn. She told me that. I didn’t know her schedule but apparently everyone else does. And what’s with this mah-jongg game?”

“Even though you’ve been a member of the congregation for years, Saul, you haven’t been around with any regularity until recently. And you’re usually only in the synagogue for services, breakfast with our Jewish Veterans, and meeting with the Rabbi or the board. The ladies have been playing mah-jongg every Wednesday night, except during the High Holidays and Passover, pretty much since we purchased that old Victorian and fixed it up. If you’re going to be in Dickens full time now, I can try to get you into our Wednesday night poker game. We use a back room at the fire station now since Howie’s son is the assistant chief.”

“I’m a full-time resident now, Morty. I won’t be heading back to New York since I sold my apartment. I can get there easily enough when I have business and there are certainly enough hotels for me to choose from if I need to stay.” Saul took a last sip of water. “You know, my house has a finished basement, with a pool table, a large game table, and its own bar and mini kitchen. I rarely use it, except when my nephews come for a short visit in the summer on their way to Maine. Do you think the guys would want to play out at my place?”

“Do you know how to make chili? The chili at the fire station is really good.” Morty looked doubtful.

“I could order take-out from Dorrit’s Diner, couldn’t I? Amy makes a great chili, and that cornbread she serves with it is delicious. And I always have beer.”

“Sounds like you will fit right in, Saul. I’ll let you know about this Wednesday. We might not play next week because it’s Hanukkah.” Morty rose and reached for the empty coffee mugs and water glasses. “And because you’re my friend and you lost your first girl to a Russian ballet dancer, I’ll give you a tip. Milt wins all the time so be careful if it gets down to the two of you. I’ve been playing poker with him for years and I think he cheats. But darned if I can figure out how.” Morty was still shaking his head as he ambled back behind the deli’s counter.

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Author Biography:

My pen-name is Morgan Malone. A twist on the old “What is my stripper name? A combination of the name of your first pet and the street you grew up created Morgan Malone, an erudite yet brazen hussy, who left her career as an administrative law judge and counsel to pursue her first great love: writing.

I am a best-selling, award-winning, published author of a variety of romance novels: some steaming hot, some sexy, some sweet, mostly contemporary but a Pirate trilogy is in the works. I also write romantic memoir. My mainstream essays have been heard on NPR’s 51%, a nationally broadcast show directed at women. I frequently give workshops at author-reader conferences about writing “later-in-life” love stories featuring heroes and heroines, who are falling in love for the last, or maybe the first, time in their lives. Because, if you’re over 25 (and I am), maybe your book boyfriend should be too!

I live in Saratoga County, NY with my rescue diva dog, Princess. My daughter is a clinical psychologist practicing in Westchester County and my son (the real estate magnate), daughter-in-law (award-winning registered nurse) and two grandsons, live nearby. I travel, paint watercolors, play Mah Jongg, officiate at weddings, and arbitrate employment contract disputes in between writing romance and memoir.

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Title: Games Of Love. A Dickens Holiday Romance (Book 22)

Author: Morgan Malone

Genre: Later-in-life, Hanukkah romance

Book Cover: Kris Norris

Book Blurb:

A little girl brings joy and laughter to two lonely adults. But can she give them love for Hanukkah?

Bo Morgan moved to Dickens a little over a year ago, spearheading a new operation of the alternative energy company he worked for. And escaping the heartbreak he left behind in Texas. Reeling from the untimely loss of his beloved mother, a change of scene seems the perfect remedy for his grief. The holiday town of Dickens welcomes him warmly and he finds a home with Congregation Etz Chaim, the small Jewish synagogue. As Hanukkah approaches, Bo remembers celebrations with his large family in Texas but looks forward to celebrating with his new friends in Dickens. He does not expect to fall in love with a tiny, dark-haired princess and her beautiful, confounding mother.

Ruth Eberhardt arrived in Dickens from Chicago, just days before Thanksgiving. Leaving a successful newspaper career, she is still working on the next book in her best-selling historical biography series. But Ruth’s main focus is on her challenging new role as mother to Ariel, daughter of her best friend, Makayla. Realizing she will need a village to help her raise Ariel, as they both deal with the death of Makayla, Ruth has accepted the offer of a condominium in downtown Dickens from her mother, Judy.

As December begins, so do preparations for Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights. Living in the same building, attending the same synagogue, and sharing a love for Morty’s Deli, Ruth and Bo find themselves thrown together on numerous occasions. Some of them engineered by Ariel, who has decided that Ruth and Bo belong together.

Bo was raised in a large, loving family and figured that one day he would find a woman to love, to marry, and perhaps, to share a family. And Ruth’s intellect and beauty create a fire of desire in him, even as Ariel’s sweetness warms his heart. After a disastrous and short-lived marriage in her youth, Ruth has focused only on her career and her parents. In a new town and a new home-with a new daughter-the last thing she is looking for is a man. Even one as perfect as Bo.

Bo takes a chance and gambles on the game of love, as he prays that the miracle of Hanukkah will finally win him Ruth’s heart.


The winter sun slowly drifted down behind the hills that surrounded Dickens. A dusting of snow lay on the ground but thankfully the pavement was dry and bare as Bo maneuvered his Jeep around the last few twisty curves before the turn off to Saul’s gracious country estate. It was not his first visit, as Saul frequently hosted the Wednesday night poker game. But on those occasions, the players parked near the garage and entered the house through the mudroom into the vast country kitchen. The stairs to the lower level were just off the kitchen, so Bo had not seen much of the rest of the house. But given the luxury of the game room, playroom, home theatre, and even the damn bathroom, Bo surmised the upstairs of the house must be really something.

He pulled down the long driveway and eased his car behind Morty’s mammoth Lincoln, parked slightly askew near the short walk to the massive front door. Bo swung the tote bag containing the gifts he’d purchased for his host and hostess from his clenched fist as he made his way up to the front porch. The sound of laughter escaped from within, and Bo recognized the bell-like tones as Ariel’s infectious giggle.

The doorbell chimed and he had to laugh as “Anchors Aweigh” rang out. He was still chuckling when the door swung open. And there she was, dressed all in black—a slightly annoyed look in her eyes but a polite smile pasted on her lips.


Why does she dislike me? Bo smiled easily back at her as she ushered him into the house, closing the door behind him.

“Good Shabbes, Bo. The men are in the library with Saul and the women are in the kitchen with my mother. And Ariel is keeping everyone entertained with her Star Wars imitations. Wait till you hear Chewbacca!” She reached for his tote bag; he had not worn his coat into the house, figuring the sweater over the oxford cloth shirt was warm enough for the short walk from his car.

“Good Shabbes, Ruth. I’ll keep the bag if you don’t mind. I’ve the book for Saul and something for Judy. And” he reached into its depths and withdrew a small cylindrical shaped package, wrapped in white tissue, and tied with a blue ribbon, “this is for you.”

“For me? It’s not Hanukkah yet, Bo.” She took the gift, eyeing him suspiciously.

“Well, I figured you should have a hostess gift also, given that you have probably been helping Judy make everything all day.”

Ruth laughed in genuine amusement. Then handed the gift back to Bo. “I don’t deserve this. I just arrived twenty minutes ago. My mother had everything prepared and she also watched Ariel all afternoon so I could get some writing done. I should probably have brought her a gift too.”

“Keep the gift, Ruth. If you feel the need to earn it, you can join me in the kitchen after dinner to do dishes.” At her raised eyebrow, he added, “My mother’s rules, and now my sisters’ too. ‘She who cooks, doesn’t clean up. He who eats, does’.”

“My mother has the same rules, Bo. But, really, you don’t need to give me anything.” She started to hand the package back to him.

“Damn, Ruth, just open the damn gift. It is really nothing, just a small gesture of gratitude for the fun I had with you and Ariel at the bookstore.”

Her cheeks flushed, with embarrassment or annoyance, he wasn’t sure. Or both. She quickly tore the ribbon and the paper off. Then laughed with what seemed real appreciation. “Oh. You must have been talking to Heather.”

She held six Sharpies in her hand, each a different color.

“After you told me about the notebooks, I asked Heather a few days later what kind of pens or pencils you used to fill them with your words. She pulled out these pens and told me they were just the thing for you. I must say she seemed very amused at the notion that I wanted to buy you pens.”

“No one buys me pens. My mother will buy me notebooks. But no one buys me pens.” She smiled at him—really grinned. And Bo almost stepped back from the glow in her eyes and the almost winsome smile she gave him. And when she leaned up and planted a quick kiss on his cheek, it was all he could do to refrain from grabbing her and pulling her into his arms and locking lips.

They stared at each other, and he felt something shift between them. Pens. Who knew?

“Mr. Bo! Mr. Bo! Shabbat Shalom! Shabbat Shalom! Follow me, Mr. Bo. I’ll show you where Saul and Mr. Morty and Mr. Henry are. And all the books. Saul has more books than the bookstore!”

The tiny tornado that was Ariel swirled into the foyer, wearing a purple tutu, over purple leggings, with a grey sparkly sweatshirt. And a helmet. Brandishing a foam pirate’s sword. And for the second time since he had arrived, Bo felt his heart move. Ariel was a delight, and he was starting to feel real affection for the diminutive dynamo. So gallant facing the loss of her mother, accepting another woman to care for her, and moving a thousand miles from the only home she had ever known. And still able to laugh, to pretend. To be happy.

Bo held out his hand at her imperious gesture and allowed himself to be led into the gorgeous wood-paneled library where a fire roared in the massive fireplace. But he took a moment to turn his head to look back at Ruth. She stood still in the spacious entry, a smile on her lips, her eyes glistening. And a package of pens clasped to her chest

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1 Comment

N. N. Light
N. N. Light
Nov 13, 2023

Thank you, Morgan, for sharing your Hanukkah romances with us!

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