Publisher: Harlequin Temptation
Publication Year: December 1996
What happens when a grandmother and three elderly uncles decide to play matchmaker for their granddaughter and nephew? Rusty Romero and Trent Creighton are about to find out.
At the Triple D Ranch down in Texas, Trent’s uncles make the announcement that it’s time for Trent to get hitched. They want Trent to find a good woman who has stamina and a lot of breeding room. Trent has other plans and other ideas about women. So the uncles take it upon themselves to advertise Trent in the latest issue of “Texas Men.” The ad is everything that Trent isn’t. In fact, the ad makes Trent out to be a sexist pig.
It’s somebody that independent and head-strong Chicagoian, Rusty Romero, would never be interested in. Despite how good looking Trent is. So why did she answer Trent’s ad? She didn’t. Her grandmother, Agnes, did. When Rusty confronts her about it, Agnes tells her about the part in the ad about going to the Triple D to have an old-fashioned Christmas. Rusty can tell that this means a lot to Agnes. She agrees to go, but makes it clear that she does not want to be fixed up with this relic from the Dark Ages. In fact, Rusty plans to teach this sexist pig a few lessons of her own.
Soon Rusty finds that looks – and the written word – can be deceiving. She and Trent become friends after a rocky start, and allies against the matchmaking elders. Each agrees to fend them off of the other when their business work needs to be done. They even go as far as pretending that a romantic relationship is developing between them, so they can sneak off to an old line shack to do said business work.
But Rusty and Trent’s plan backfires. Soon they find themselves victims of a fake snow storm – thanks to Agnes and the uncles – and snowed in for a night at the line shack and in darkness. Thanks to Rusty and Trent’s growing attraction to each other, they find fun things to do to pass the time.
Heather MacAllister delivers a wonderful Christmas story with CHRISTMAS MALE filled with smiles, “lust” (Rusty’s reasoning to her attraction to Trent), and love. A delightful surprise also happens between two of the secondary characters. While Rusty and Trent are terrific characters, I couldn’t help but to be taken with Trent’s uncles – Clarence, former veterinarian Doc, and shop-a-holic Harvey. They help make this one keeper of a book! –Reviewed by SLS 1/12/97