Christmas 1815. Upstairs and downstairs, Holbourne Hall is abuzz with preparations for a grand ball to celebrate the year’s most festive—and romantic—holiday. For at the top of each guest’s wish list is a last chance to find true love before the New Year…
IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER
by Mary Jo Putney
Captain the Honorable Kimball Stretton went off to war a determined, idealistic handsome man and came back war torn, crippled and scarred. He spends his days locked away from his family and friends, in a tower where no one can see his scars and run away in fear.
Miss Roxanne Hayward fell in love with Kim the minute he invited her to ride his horse with him back when they were children. When she watched Kim go off to war, she was upset. Even though he offered her marriage before he left, Roxie begrudgingly declined thinking that she could be a new wife, then a widow soon after. Now that Kimball is back but hidden away from those who love him and Roxanne is left in a quandary, marry Kim's brother or attempt to rile Kim from his self-imposed exile and fear possible rejection. Of course the unwavering Roxie will do all she can to make Kimball face her and her unending love for him.
Once again Mary Jo Putney has grabbed my attention and left such an impression with IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER. This story in the Last Chance Christmas Ball anthology is a page turner. Even with this story being a short novella, the characters show so much emotion and the tale is complete. I truly enjoyed this story, as well as the other novellas in this Christmas anthology.