Who cares that it's a Christmas book! This is one of those books that you can read anytime of the year and feel all those feels! Morningstar's first Flashback Friday book is Christmas Kitsch by Amy Lane and I agree that this is a must read!!
Book: Christmas Kitsch
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Cover Artist: LC Chase
Publication date: December 9, 2017
Length: 254 pages
Reviewed by Morningstar
Sometimes the best thing you can get for Christmas is knowing what you really want.
Rusty Baker is a blond, rich, entitled football player in a high school full of them—just the type of oblivious jock all the bullied kids hate. And he might have stayed that way, except he develops a friendship with out-and-proud Oliver Campbell from the wrong side of the tracks. Rusty thinks the friendship is just pity—Oliver is very bright, and Rusty is very not—but then Oliver kisses him goodbye when Rusty leaves for college, and Rusty is forced to rethink everything he knows about himself.
But even Rusty’s newfound awareness can’t help him survive a semester at Berkeley. He returns home for Thanksgiving break clinging to the one thing he knows to be true: Oliver Campbell is the best thing that’s ever happened to him.
Rusty’s parents disagree, and Rusty finds himself homeless for the holidays. Oliver may not have much money, but he’s got something Rusty has never known: true family. With their help and Oliver’s love, Rusty comes to realize that he may have failed college, but he’ll pass real life with flying rainbow colors.
This was one of my very first Amy Lane books, and it was one that I’ve re-read a million times. Sometimes just parts and sometimes the whole thing. There's just something beautiful and endearing about this love story. It has the pain and the romance and the growth that I always love to see in the books I read.
Rusty is this dumb jock type guy who just grabs right a hold of you the minute he starts to speak. The whole story is told in his POV, and I honestly couldn’t be happier with that because this is his story. His story of learning and exploring and standing on his own after he realizes some significant things about himself.
“I’m pretty sure I’m Oliver-sexual.” I nodded, smiling, proud of this, and the smile he gave me back was like a solar fire.
Oscar is the feistiest, smartest, most perfectly matched guy for Rusty. He stands by him, challenges him, but most importantly loves him with every fiber of his being. And he brings a family for Rusty when his own isn’t there for him. All the characters in that family are quirky and full of love that anyone would be lucky for them to be all nosy.
There are parts that broke me and made me tear up and cry over the obstacles that Rusty had to overcome to find his HEA. There were parts that made me giggle and laugh and cheer and hope. I think that’s what I love about this story the most; it made me hope. Hope that those out there going through this same thing find their Oliver and feel the love and acceptance that Rusty did.
“Just close your eyes,” he said softly, and I did. He moved slowly, reaching behind my head and pulling it down, and when I was right where he needed to be, he raised up a little. I could feel puffs of breath against my mouth, and then a tickle against my lips. And another, harder. And one more, warmer. I gasped, opening my mouth, and his tongue swept in, teasing a little, until I teased back. He sighed into my mouth, and for a moment it felt like he was going to pull away, but I wasn’t ready. I reached behind him and pulled him closer to me, and his tongue went deeper. Ohhh . . . this was kissing. I sighed back at him, and he pulled away, leaving me to suck on his tongue until the last minute, because I wanted him some more. And then it hit me. Oliver had kissed me, and I’d kissed him back.
I fell in love with these characters as they fell for each other and it’s a story that will always stay with me.
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