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Magic in the Snow by Ryan Jo Summers is a Christmas and Holiday Festival pick #romance #giveaway

Title: Magic in the Snow

Author: Ryan Jo Summers

Genre: Contemporary romance

Book Blurb:

He’s the town scrooge. She blew in like a candy-coated snowstorm. Can a young boy’s belief in magic bring them together?

The ink is barely dry from her divorce when Dawson Patrick and her three-year-old Autistic son, Adam, arrive in Cedar Falls, Maine. She’s here to help her aging father and doesn’t plan to stay long. Soon she and Adam will be on their way somewhere…to a new life.

When she finds her dad sitting in a cold house that’s falling around him, with little food, she realizes she might have a bigger problem on her hands. To make matters worse, she has no idea where to start on her long list of home improvement. She needs books on lots of DIY projects, and the man to help her is the local Christmas scrooge.

Samuel Johnson owns Chapter Twenty-Five Bookstore. He doesn’t enjoy the holiday season and he doesn’t ‘do’ gifts. He just happens to live in a town that wholeheartedly embraces it, so he’s learned to adapt and lay low to escape the memories of many an unhappy Christmas past. He can’t believe the blonde beauty who marches into his store like a candy-coated snowstorm, along with her pint-sized elfin toddler, and orders up a stack of DIY home repair books. Before Samuel knows it, he’s letting Dawson and Adam drag him to the town’s tree lighting ceremony, convincing him to foster kittens, and to give gifts.

Has Dawson just returned home to forget her past, only to slide into another relationship? Has the town scrooge finally seen the Christmas lights?


Cedar Falls looked the same as when Dawson Patrick left it. She stopped her truck and looked down Main Street. It was a perfect Hallmark Christmas scene, or a Thomas Kincaid painting come to life. She shook her head, not quite able to believe she was back in Maine.

She shivered against the cold air coming in off the Atlantic, silently cursed it under her breath, and looked at the snowy street view before her. Assorted shops lined the snow-covered sidewalks of Main Street, their business signs swinging in the wind. Most were old houses converted to stores. She suspected many still housed apartments above for rent or for the shopkeepers. Some were white colonial clapboard, several elegant Victorian with turrets, others were brick, and a few were Tudor. Most harkened back to the 1800’s era when the town settled. All were decorated with merrily twinkling lights to match the blinking ones on each black lamppost dotting the length of the street. Red ribbon bows fluttered in the crisp wind.

She exhaled a deep sigh. Hallmark.

The things you do for family.

She rolled the window down a few inches and let the cool ocean air in to circulate the SUV. She inhaled the salt-tinged scent and sighed again.

She looked at her three suitcases in the back, one bought specially before she left Roanoke, Virginia and filled with thrift store chunky sweaters, flannel shirts, corduroy pants, and extra gloves, scarves, boots and gloves. Plus one colorful case full of gently used, new things for Adam. She thought she was done with needing a heavy winter wardrobe when she left Maine seven years ago. Apparently not.

Traffic was light as she eased through town, and then picked up speed on the other side. Her destination was her dad’s place, her old home, about five miles out of Cedar Falls. She glanced in the backseat, and she smiled at Adam.

“How are you doing, buddy?” she asked her son.

He bobbed his blond head and smiled back at her, showing off his dimples. He hugged Bear-Bear tight. Her heart melted at the sight of his trusting face. He’d been so patient and good while on this nine-hundred-mile trip.

Peter has no idea what he walked out on.

Dawson turned her attention back to the road, as her mind traveled two different paths of thought. The scenes before her were familiar. This used to be her way home. She drove by her old school, a three-story, L-shaped brick building that housed K through twelve. Automatically she made the turns to reach her destination. No GPS needed here in Cedar Falls. She glanced back at Adam again.

His position was as it had been for most of their journey, sitting straight in his car seat and watching intensely out the window. How much of what he saw did he understand? Peter swore Adam processed next to nothing of what he experienced. Dawson disagreed. She had so much proof that her son had a decent understanding of life for his age.

Peter was an idiot. In so many ways.

She turned on the wipers to brush away the thin layer of snow that fell on the windshield.

“Look at the snow, Adam. See the snow falling?”


She smiled back at him. “That’s right, sweetie. Snow. Good job.”

Then she saw her destination; a rusty, dented mailbox. 1135 Patrick. It leaned haphazardly to the left, as if it had been hit a few times. Well, she did bump into it once when she was seventeen and late getting home that one night, but her dad had propped it back up. Now it bore witness to more recent attacks than just hers. Her fingers curled around the wheel and her heart rate sped up.

“Snow,” Adam repeated, almost making her jump.

“Yes. Snow. We’re here now. This is where I lived when I was young.” She pointed through the windshield at the pale yellow, two-story farmhouse. She tried to make her voice upbeat, but the sight of her old home closed off her throat. Her brother had not been exaggerating.

Josh was an anesthesiologist with Doctors Without Borders. He’d come home to visit Dad during one of his rare breaks. It had been his first visit home in several years and he was shocked. Right before he left again, he called Dawson and outlined his concerns.

For Dawson, the timing proved to be…convenient. It did not take her long to wrap up her business in town and pack up Adam and herself and hit the road. Since they had nowhere else to go, returning to Cedar Falls seemed…fortuitous.

Josh promised to provide some money if she could chip in too and together, they could get their dad squared away. So she agreed and budgeted some of her savings to the dad cause. Since Peter absolved himself from Adam, he was freed from any child support. And because he had the better lawyer, and she had the wimpy lawyer, he was also freed from any alimony. Dawson left with her savings and her retirement from her job. Period.

Adam kicked the seat, jarring her back to the present.

“Well, buddy, we’re here now, so we’re going to make this work. Right?” Because there was no going back, and she couldn’t think of anywhere else to go.

Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):

Share a holiday family tradition:

We would go out driving at night, looking at the neighborhoods and all the pretty lights. It was funny to see how each family tried to outdo the others.

Why is your featured book perfect to get readers in the holiday mood?

Cedar Falls, Maine is a small town where the locals go all out for Christmas. Samuel, the bookshop owner with a past, isn’t keen on all the holiday hoop-la-la, and just tries to lay low and wait it out. Until Dawson and her young son roll into town. Dawson has her own share of troubles, but she will do anything to make her son happy. Evidently all the Christmas festivities are what everyone wanted. When you combine the innocence of children with a town crazy for Christmas, and add some cute kittens, it can coax any reluctant scrooge to get into the holiday spirit.

Giveaway –

One lucky reader will win a $75 Amazon gift card

Open internationally.

Runs December 1 – 31

Drawing will be held on January 2, 2024.

Author Biography:

Her writing has appeared in trade journals and regional and national magazines. She has numerous novels, novellas, and anthology contributions all published in the romance genre and assorted subgenres. Some have placed well in national writing contests.

Aside from writing and pet sitting, Ryan Jo likes to work in her garden, gather with family and friends, and cook. paint, and read. She enjoys a good game of chess, or a challenging word find puzzle and watching fish swim in an aquarium or the chickens scratch in the yard.

Social Media Links:


Dec 14, 2023

Elf on the shelf, watching Xmas movies, decorating, and driving around looking at xmas lights,


N. N. Light
N. N. Light
Dec 06, 2023

Thank you, Ryan Jo, for sharing your book in our Christmas and Holiday Book Festival!

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