- N. N. Light
Her Homegrown Christmas Wish by @rpaigebooks is a Christmas Festival pick #Christian #giveaway
Title: Her Homegrown Christmas Wish
Author: Rachelle Paige Campbell
Genre: Christian romance, contemporary romance
All five-year-old Olivia Beacon wants for Christmas is a dad…
How on earth is single mom Hannah Beacon supposed to make that happen? To make matters worse, her holiday season is off to a rocky start. Between transferring ownership of the family bakery amid her mom’s decline, raising her young daughter, and the onslaught of Christmas orders, she can’t handle much more. And then her estranged husband shows up on her doorstep.
In the New Year, Daniel Ford is set to begin production on a TV show for the Hope and Family network. After years in the industry, the role is his biggest break yet. But when he sees his wife on screen with a mini version of herself, he realizes his shot at fame is on the line.
Together, Daniel and Hannah agree to start legal divorce proceedings—until Daniel comes face to face with the child that spurred his return. He can’t walk out of his daughter’s life, nor can he continue to deny his feelings for his wife. Will the career Daniel’s always wanted take center stage? Or can the two forgive past hurts to make their daughter’s Christmas wish a reality?
Now? Daniel asked if she had a spare second… today? Was he joking? What about any other time during the past six years?
Hannah opened her mouth and released a half-cough and half chuckle. The dry rasp scratched her cracked throat, irritating her entire upper respiratory system. Her nostrils burned, and her cheeks scalded. She dragged in a breath of fresh air and choked on the blast of cold. Raising a fist, she covered her mouth and coughed.
From the other side of the doorway, he was tall and handsome as ever. With a thick head of dirty blond hair and dark brown eyes, he pierced her with his stare. His chiseled jaw was set, hinting at no emotions.
And I look like a slovenly fool. She shut her gaping mouth, dropping her gaze, and willing herself to stop noticing too much about him. Like the fitted cut of the down jacket and faded jeans skimming the top of a pristine pair of driving loafers.
If she imagined a reunion, which she’d neither confirm nor deny, she certainly wasn’t wearing ill-fitting jeans under a too-big sweater with her in-need-of-a-trim-and-highlights hair in a high ponytail. Pressing her lips together, she refreshed her color. At least she always counted on her lipstick obsession to save her from a total fashion nightmare.
“Come in.” She dropped her hold on the door and stepped back.
The service door swung shut, clicking into place in the frame.
She jumped at the clang of metal on metal and the resounding echo. Her senses were painfully heightened. Warmth spread through her to the tips of her toes. If he was here, he wanted to see her. She had her second chance. Finally. With a shake, she folded her arms and smiled. “Hi.”
“Hey.” He slipped a finger into his collar and tugged. “Happy Thanksgiving.”
He arched a brow. “Do you have a better greeting?”
I missed you. She nibbled her bottom lip, tasting the waxy remnants of lipstick. Too bad she couldn’t sneak to the car and refresh her pout. Running out of the room might be less awkward than silently staring but was exponentially more cowardly.
With her heart stuck in her throat, she’d asphyxiate on everything she never said, starting with the reason she left in the first place. Their daughter. While she’d flitted from acting job to acting job, never landing a regular role but working steadily enough to keep their dreams alive, she’d struggled. Each success had emphasized his failure.
He’d finally gotten a call back for a promising role. He had smiled for the first time in years. And she had been rooting for him to be disappointed so they could leave. She couldn’t be the reason he gave up his big break after years of struggle, but she couldn’t stay.
She had thought leaving for a short break would provide clarity during the busy start of filming his new show. After a few weeks in her childhood home, she had understood the homesickness she experienced in LA could only be cured by moving to Harmony for good. She had called but couldn’t reach him. She had mailed a letter, and it was returned unopened. She had assumed he’d look for her when he had a break. He’d know where she was. He never did.
“Silent? Really?” He shook his head and looked at the ground.
She hated the scoff in his tone and the brush-off by glancing away. She made the best choice for all of them. Hard decisions were part of being an adult and helping loved ones. With the abrupt changes in her immediate family, she understood responsibility better than ever before.
“I’ll start. Your little stunt has jeopardized my career.”
She drew back her chin and studied him. What nonsense was he spewing? He schooled his features into an expressionless mask. But his brown eyes flashed like tempered chocolate edging toward the moment of ruin. As far as she was aware, her little stunt saved his career. “Sorry?”
“You should be,” he muttered.
“No, I’m not apologizing.” She pursed her lips. She should have known better than to raise her hopes for reconciliation. She made a mistake, but sorting out if it was leaving him or falling for him in the first place was the riddle taunting her days. She swallowed, clearing the sour taste in her mouth. She wouldn’t regret her child. “I meant, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Your commercial. You picked a fine time to reenter the profession. And standing next to your child? Who’s the father? Does he know about me? Or your status as a married woman?”
Her temples throbbed. Olivia finally spurred her father into action only to be denied by him. Hannah pressed cold fingers to her forehead. “Please explain how I’m impacting you?”
“I landed a show on the Hope and Family Network. It’s huge. This opportunity is my big break. I signed a morality clause and being cuckolded, I’m pretty sure, is a major violation of the terms.”
Is that worse than abandoning your family? He must have known where she was. Returning home wasn’t an attempt at hiding. She vaguely remembered bumping into his mom a few times. She’d been scared the woman would call her son and apprise him of Hannah’s condition. But then she’d also hoped it would happen, too. At least he would know. His mom had sold her house and left. With Hannah’s hopes and fears of an inelegant resolution dashed, she had settled into a routine of waiting.
Her patience was rewarded with curt, cutting words? She breathed through her nose. Trusting Him wasn’t easy, but, on her path, she tried so hard to listen. “I’m not acting again. The commercial was a one-time thing.”
“Yeah, for the biggest launch of the holiday season. Do you know how many times I saw the ad playing on TVs at the airport?”
Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):
Apple iBooks: https://books.apple.com/us/book/her-homegrown-christmas-wish/id6444196803
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/her-homegrown-christmas-wish-rachelle-paige-campbell/1142618958?ean=2940166602428
Share a holiday family tradition:
We love to see holiday light displays. As a kid, my family would drive around our neighborhood to ooh and aah at the houses. I have continued to do this with my kids. Our town used to have a drive-thru display. When the land was developed for houses, the lights were sold at auction and now it’s fun to drive through our town and spot our favorites at local businesses. In addition, I like to find new displays. Our botanic gardens have a wonderful set-up, but this year we’ll be doing a two mile run through the zoo lights.
Why is your featured book perfect to get readers in the holiday mood?
From a nativity play to Christmas cookies to shopping to cutting down the tree, Her Homegrown Christmas Wish is covered in fun, holiday traditions. Also, celebrating with children really makes the season special. As much as I loved Christmas as a kid, I love it a thousand times more as the mom.
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Runs December 1 – 31
Drawing will be held on January 3, 2023.
Rachelle Paige Campbell writes contemporary romance novels filled with heart and hope. She believes love and laughter can change lives, and every story needs a happily ever after.
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