I was in Target the other day doing a little Christmas shopping and I found myself – surprise surprise – in the Book department. There were no fewer than 15 brand-new Christmas romance novels from 15 different authors. Was I surprised? Not really. We all know romance sells… And a Christmas romance sells even better.
This got me to thinking: Why is it that romance readers love a Christmas romance?
In the purest sense, Christmas is a joyous time. We all want to be happy, in love, be loved, and give love. The basic Christmas romance novel uses that universal desire for love and amplifies it. How you ask? Well, I’m going to tell you.
Typically, a romance novel set during the Christmas season will involve a heroine who is just not feeling the love. The love of the season, or the love of a good man. Enter our hero. He, too, may not be feeling the love of the season. He isn’t looking for his soul-mate; doesn’t think Santa is going to hand deliver a girl for him down the chimney and leave her under the tree. BUT. It’s Christmas after all. The time of miracles; the time of wishes being fulfilled.
When our hero and our heroine do meet, it may not be love at first sight, or even second. Possibly not third, either. Some intangible thing, though, will bring them together and when they do find their love ( usually on Christmas morning or under the mistletoe) then the story gets resolved, because Christmas is the time for love to wash away all the evil, all the hurt, all the pain of the year before it.
I will admit freely and unabashedly I am a total sap for a Christmas romance story. The Hallmark channel and Lifetime Movie Network were made especially for me ( or so I tell myself). Their 24 hour a day holiday movies and specials – all about some sort of love/romance as the theme surrounding the Christmas season are favorites with romance novel readers from every walk of life. Happily ever afters abound, and Santa comes on Christmas morning, bringing you exactly what you wanted and wished for (usually a hunky guy in Christmas boxers…but I digress and that’s for another blog post).
Yeah, I know it’s kinda sappy and syrupy and maybe even schmaltzy, but I don’t care. Neither do the millions of others who support ( read: spend their money on!) this cottage holiday industry.
So, while I settle down in front of my roaring fireplace where I’m all warm and comfy with new Nora Roberts’ CHRISTMAS WIH YOU book, after just finishing Jill Shalvis’ MERRY CHIRTSMAS BABY , I hope you can take an hour or two this week and read a new holiday romance or watch the Hallmark Channel and/or Lifetime Movie Network. After all, we deserve a break from shopping, wrapping, cooking and decorating, don’t we?
Blurb: Valentine’s Day is chocolatier Chloe San Valentino’s favorite day of the year. Not only is it the busiest day in her candy shop, Caramelle de Chloe, but it’s also her birthday. Chloe’s got a birthday wish list for the perfect man she pulls out every year: he’d fall in love with her in a heartbeat, he’d be someone who cares about people, and he’d have one blue eye and one green eye, just like her. So far, Chloe’s fantasy man hasn’t materialized, despite the matchmaking efforts of her big, close-knit Italian family. But this year for her big 3-0 birthday, she just might get her three wishes.