Book Review: Chasing Christmas Eve by Jill Shalvis

Posted November 17, 2017 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

Book Review: Chasing Christmas Eve by Jill Shalvis

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Chasing Christmas Eve by Jill Shalvis
Genres: Cozy Romance
Published by Avon Books on September 26th 2017
Pages: 384
Format: Paperback
Source: the library

Buy on Amazon
Also by this author: It’s in His Kiss, He’s So Fine, One in a Million, Forever and a Day, Second Chance Summer, Sweet Little Lies, Get A Clue, The Trouble with Mistletoe, “One Snowy Night”, Rainy Day Friends, Merry and Bright

Fourth in the Heartbreaker Bay contemporary romance series and revolving around a core group of friends living and/or working around the fountain of love at the Pacific Pier Building in the Cow Hollow district of San Francisco. The couple focus is on Spence and Colbie.

My Take

This was fun. What am I saying? All the Heartbreaker Bay stories are fun, although I will say that Chasing Christmas Eve doesn’t have that same level of coziness the three previous installments did. I do like the project that Spence is focusing on…Amazon should take on this drone project, lol.

Shalvis has a unique way to bring in the acceptance theme, of accepting people for who they need to be. Lord knows, it’s a lesson we all need to absorb, as it addresses one’s inner approach to life, not just the career choice.

Our lead protagonists certainly have their issues, and Shalvis uses third-person dual point-of-view to emphasize how focused and forgetful Spence is — along with regretting his social problems — while Colbie has lost her joy of writing. You writers will identify with her issues. And, lol, wish you had some of ‘em.

There is a LOT of tease in this before we finally get the whole enchilada. Shalvis tosses out teeny bits and pieces about how demanding Colbie’s life is (and what a pain her family is!) and about Spence’s inability to have a relationship. It did wear on me after awhile. Especially Colbie obsessing about keeping her success as a writer secret. Why? Does she think Spence is a secret fangirl, oops, -boy, of YA fantasy?

I definitely thought Colbie overreacted to those revelations on Girls’ Night Out. I’d’ve been touched if a boyfriend had been that thoughtful. Yeah, I know I whine on about these little jumps out of place, but I hate it when it feels as if an author is trying to slip one in without putting some thought into it.

Whoa, we finally get the backstory on Old Man Eddie. And whoa again…makes me think about a second look at the homeless guys I pass on the street, wondering what drove them here.

The Story

Colbie Albright can’t take it anymore. Besieged on all sides, she’s up against the walls of expectations, and it’s killing her delight. And so she flees. Whichever airline is heading out first.

She had wanted sand and surf, but has to settle for being shoved into an historic San Francisco fountain within an hour of arrival. Fortunately, the guy who fishes Colbie out has her considering that escape might not be so bad. And Spence…well, Spence thinks that a woman who can laugh at herself and listen may be the one.

There’s no time for Colbie and Spence to get serious, not with that Christmas Eve end date. Just two weeks of fun with no commitment. Except…

The Characters

Colbie Albright writes a YA fantasy series, Storm Fever, as CE Crown. She’s been the only responsible member of her family since she was six. Kurt and Kent are her younger ne’er-do-well twin brothers (23!!), always looking for a handout. Cinder is the stray black cat Colbie adopts. Janeen and Tracy are part of her staff. Jackson is her jerkish agent. Andrea Horvath is her editor.

The ADD-focused Spencer Baldwin is a reclusive, inventive geek with a masters in mechanical engineering who sold out his startup and made his millions. Clarissa Woodward is the girlfriend who dumped him two years ago. A doctor, she currently runs One-World, a charity, and the drone project is for her. The homeless Old Man Eddie is Spence’s grandfather; Mati was a free spirit with whom he fell in love. Caleb is Spence’s former business partner and still a friend. The very protective Elle Wheaten manages Spence and his Pacific Pier Building (Accidentally on Purpose, 3). Trudy is the housekeeper who takes good care of Spence; Luiz is the husband she’s married three or four times.

Hunt Investigations is…
…a successful security business owned by Archer Hunt (Accidentally on Purpose). Molly is the receptionist and Joe’s younger sister. Joe (former Special Ops) is one of the IT wizards, Hunt’s second-in-command, and a master finder and fixer.

”Seriously, you’re a grown-ass man, one who’s been trained in a million different ways to kill someone. Why do you let Elle terrify you?”

Willa Davis runs a pet shop and animal day care and is involved with Keane Winters (The Trouble with Mistletoe, 2). Daisy Duke is one of Willa’s regulars. Finn O’Riley (Sweet Little Lies, 1) and his brother Sean own O’Riley’s, a bar and meeting place for this core group of friends. Pru is with Finn and works as a pilot and boat captain for tours on San Francisco Bay. Kylie creates gorgeous furniture at Reclaimed Woods. Vinnie is Kylie’s French bulldog. Tina, who used to be Tim, makes the most incredible muffins. Haley, the voice of calm reason, is the optometrist on the second floor.

Mrs. Winslow is one of Spence’s neighbors. Mrs. Stein was Spence’s fourth grade teacher. Brandon had been a fellow student at college — when Spence was 16.

The Cover and Title

The cover is a deep royal blue, lightening as it encounters the well-lit Golden Gate Bridge. It’s unrealistic with Spence in rolled-up shirt sleeves and jeans and Colbie in a deep turquoise waist-length jacket and flimsy navy blue print skirt. It’s never warm enough in San Francisco at Christmas to dress this lightly. Then again, they must be well warmed-up with that kiss that has Colbie’s heels kicking up behind her. The author’s name (all uppercase) is in an embossed white with a much smaller title (all lowercase) below it in an embossed metallic gold. The blurbs and series information is scattered about in white.

The title is what Spence and Colbie are each doing in their own ways: Chasing Christmas Eve.

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