2017 Christmas Extravaganza featuring Clare Connelly
I blame my mother entirely for my unstinting love of all things festive. She made Christmas so special for us, and the traditions and magic of that time of the year weave their way through my recollections of childhood. There were the pomanders we’d make at the dining table, spending hours stuffing little, sharp cloves into juicy, sweet oranges; the wreaths she would construct using only vines and pinecones, weaving them – as if by magic – until they became thick and spindly and beautiful. There was the tree – always a real pine – filling our house with its alpine fragrance, and the ceremony of dressing it in the same ornaments we’d had forever; and my mother’s fruit cake, which is as delicious as it is legendary. We would eat mangoes and cherries by the case, until the juice dribbled down our chins, but never our clothes because we were taught to lean over the kitchen sink while eating them.
Now that I’m a mum, I find myself indulging in many of the same traditions, but this time, from the other side. It’s my hands cajoling stubborn branches into a circular shape, burying pinecones in amongst the gaps until I have a proper Christmas wreath. It’s me instructing my children how to insert cloves into citrus peel, how to balance the sides of a gingerbread house, encouraging them all the while to ‘be patient’ to allow the royal icing time to stick; I’m the one who chooses the Christmas movies and makes the fruit mince pies and the egg nog and finds my own ways to make Christmas as magical for my little elves as it was for me.
Though most of my Christmas books are set in cooler climes (think snow, roaring fires and whisky, not to mention hunky alphas, to keep things warm…) I adore an Aussie Christmas. A new tradition we’ve adopted, in an attempt to stretch out present-opening as long as possible, is to go to the beach after the first two gifts have been unwrapped. I make a little picnic – toasted sandwiches with ham, brie and cranberry sauce, champagne, lindt chocolate and watermelon – and we set off, ready to dangle our toes in the water, singing Christmas carols all the way there.
However you spend your Christmas, I hope it’s filled with people you love, traditions that remind you of precious memories, and of course, in ways that make all new memories for you to treasure.
Her Guardian’s Christmas Seduction
An unwilling guardian… a forbidden desire they can’t control.
Stavros Aresteides never wanted the responsibility of his fifteen year old ward Claudia La Roche. He wanted it even less when she drank too much and begged him to take her to bed as an eighteen year old. Now, at twenty one, scandal seems to follow her and he has no choice but to intervene, kidnapping her to his estate in the English countryside where she can’t cause any more trouble. Or so he thinks!
Claudia’s heart was broken and her pride destroyed when Stavros crushingly rejected her foolish teenage advances. At twenty one and a much adored socialite, some things haven’t changed. Claudia is still innocent, and she still wants Stavros to be her first lover.
But a passionate seduction is all it can ever be. Claudia has a secret that she can never share with her sexy, tempting guardian.
A story full of Christmas traditions and festive magic, heartbreak and hurt and the road to recovery if only you can let yourself trust… A festive romance that will set your soul on fire.
The delightful Clare Connelly is offering a lucky AusRom reader the chance to win her latest novel, Her Guardian’s Christmas Seduction!
To enter, simply fill in the below form: