Secret Santas Holiday Collection
Includes: Calista Fox, Erin Quinn, Mary Leo
Publication date: November 2014
Kissing Kris Kringle
In the spirit of giving and paying it forward, all of the author’s proceeds for Kissing Kris Kringle will be donated to The Animal Welfare League, an amazing organization dedicated to saving animals lives and working to improve the way they are treated and regarded by society.
Kris Kringle is just an average guy living in the tiny town of North Pole, Maine where Christmas isn’t just a holiday—it’s a way of life. But not for Kris. He might be named after the big guy in red, but Kris is more Scrooge than Santa.
Until he wakes up from a night of partying with his friends to find himself in possession of a Santa suit, a toy bag and a puppy. Kris soon discovers that he’s been relegated to Santa’s naughty list and there’s only one way to get his name removed….put on the suit and spread some cheer.
Lucky for Kris every cloud has a silver snowflake and his quest to get off that list lands him in the arms of the woman he’s been lusting after for years.
It takes a little magic, but Kris is about to get everything he didn’t even know he wanted for Christmas.
Kissing Kris Kringle
‘Tis the season for Christmas miracles…
Having landed himself on Santa’s Naughty List, Nick Santos is given a chance at redemption. Granted, he’s tasked with some daunting challenges—pimping Santa’s ride and fixing the town’s holiday bling in the once year-round Christmas Capital of the World, North Pole, Maine. But playing Secret Santa comes with some unexpected perks, like finally catching the eye of the woman who sparks his deepest desires, Vixen White.
Vixen has no idea what’s come over Nick this holiday season, but his good deeds around town help her to remember the magic of Christmas, long forgotten. And his sexy grin and a searing, stolen kiss under mistletoe have her wishing her dream of being Naughty St. Nick’s one and only will finally come true.
All she has to do…is believe.
Naughty St. Nick
Romancing Rudy Raindear
Rudy Raindear thought he’d left North Pole, Main in his rear-view mirror. Now, after several years, he’s returned to convince his beloved grandfather to retire and sell his struggling bakery, Sugar Plums – the linchpin in a potentially lucrative real estate deal – great for Rudy, devastating for the town.
But all is not what it seems in this magical Christmas town, especially after Rudy lands on Santa’s Naughty List. Suddenly Rudy’s nose is turning red for the tiniest of white lies and the one girl he wanted to impress, Jenny Bells, is on his case for trying to close Santa’s favorite bakery.
What’s a guy to do?
Start baking and just maybe Rudy can save the bakery, and convince Jenny that sometimes, being a little naughty, is oh-so nice.
Romancing Rudy Raindear
An Excerpt from Romancing Rudy Raindear
by Mary leo
That’s when it came to him. “Jenny Bells! You’re Jenny Bells from Donner Street. You were my very first kiss.”
“Good grief, how bad off are you?”
He chuckled, careful of any actual movement. “Apparently, pretty bad.” Then he stared at her for a moment as last night began to come into focus. “You were there, along with Kris and Nick, and some guy who looked a lot like the real Santa or was that a dream?”
“I don’t remember the Santa guy, but your buddies Kris and Nick were absolutely there. I came in at midnight with a plate of your grandfather’s cookies which you all devoured. Carol told me you kept buying rounds, and everybody kept drinking. I’m sure the guys are feeling just as bad as you do this morning.”
“Why aren’t you dying like the rest of us?”
“Somebody had to be the adult. After just one of those Christmas Bombs, I knew you three would never make it home if I didn’t drive. Besides, I’ve been living here in this attic ever since my apartment building went into foreclosure, so any way I can help out your grandfather, or his grandson, seemed like the right thing to do.”
“You live here?” He looked around at the long, narrow room and could tell she had transformed half of it into a livable, feminine space, but still . . . “Why the hell would you live here?”
She shrugged. “Your grandfather needed some help both in the bakery and around the house after your gram passed. I needed a place to live. It just made sense. He won’t let me pay rent, so I try to do the things he can’t.”
“I’m sure Gramps loves having you around, but doesn’t your day job get in the way?”
“Helping your grandfather is my day job. He’s teaching me how to bake Santa’s favorite cookie, or at least that’s the plan. We haven’t exactly gotten around to it yet. Gramps can’t remember the recipe, nor can he find your grandmother’s recipe book, but we’ve got ten days to go before Christmas. I’m sure we’ll figure something out by then.”
Rudy hoped to have the Smart-Mart deal locked-up by then.
“Bless you,” she said.
“Thanks. Don’t you miss your own place? I mean if this is your room, it’s not very private for overnight guests.”
Rudy felt a mild pang of guilt for taking her bed, but on the other hand, he was over six feet tall and that sofa would never have been long enough.
“It’s a small town, remember? Not much guest action going on. Besides, I thought you’d have a room at the Inn, and when you didn’t, I had no choice but to bring you home.”
“You could have slept in bed with me. I wouldn’t have attacked you,” he lied. If he had awoken and been at all coherent, he probably would have tried it. Of course, he wasn’t about to tell her that.
His nose suddenly itched. He tried to ignore it, but it tickled like a son of a bitch.
She threw him a little grin that told him there was no way in hell she would have climbed into bed with him. He had the distinct feeling she knew his game.
“It was tricky enough just sleeping on the couch. You kept telling me how much you still loved me. You must have tried to get me into bed ten times before you finally gave up and fell asleep.”
“Sorry ‘bout that.”
“Accepted. I really loved my old apartment. I would have lived there forever if I could have. I heard someone bought the building, but they haven’t done any work on it yet. Shame, it’s such a cute place. With the right TLC it could be beautiful again. I’ve been hoping to move back in, but so far, I haven’t heard who bought it or when the renovations are going to start.”
Rudy didn’t want to tell her he was the owner and when his deal went through with Smart-Mart the apartment building, along with this building and several others on Prancer Street, would be demolished to make way for the mega-store.
“I’m sure the new owner is just waiting until after the holidays to begin the repairs.” As he spoke his nose itched again, and he could feel a sneeze coming on. “Excuse me,” he said, as he grabbed another tissue and sneezed five times in a row.
When he finished, he gazed over at her. She had a curious look on her face as she tried to stifle the grin spreading across her sweet lips.
“What’s so funny?” Rudy asked. His headache had begun to retreat, and his stomach had calmed down to manageable ache.
“Nothing, at least I don’t think it’s anything. It’s just that as you were talking, your nose seemed to get a bit pinker. Even bordering on red.”
“I’m probably getting a cold.”
She giggled. “Does your nose usually turn this red when you get a cold?”
Concerned, Rudy said, “Define ‘this red.’”
“Stay right there. Let me get you a mirror.”
Jenny slid out of bed, and walked to the back of the attic. While she was digging around through the trunks, Rudy grabbed a sugar coated cookie off the tray and ate it in two bites. It tasted all sugary and yummy, but as he swirled the sweet-goodness around in his mouth, he could tell it lacked the proper amount of cinnamon, and it needed an extra pinch of vanilla.
He had grown up baking alongside his grandparents, something his parents had discouraged, and developed a distinctive pallet for every cookie in the bakery, so he knew when his grandfather was on target. This cookie, although good, was not perfect.
Gramps was slipping.
“Found it,” Jenny said as she held up an ornate hand mirror that undoubtedly had belonged to his late grandmother.
She handed it to him and he gazed into the mirror at bloodshot eyes, bed hair, rosy cheeks and an unnaturally deep red nose.
“What the hell?”
It was at that moment when Rudy remembered exactly what that Santa guy with the white beard and heavy black boots had said to him, or rather, sang to him as they stood outside in some cold place that looked an awful lot like the real North Pole, complete with miles of packed icy snow, and several reindeer grazing alongside a huge log cabin. There may have even been an elf or two visible through a snowy window.
You better look out. You better not lie. You better not doubt, I’m telling you why. Santa Claus is coming to town. He sees you when you’re sleeping, and knows when you’re a fake. Your nose will shine when you really lie, so be good for goodness sake.
Then another vivid memory gave Rudy a momentary full body shudder.
Santa had placed him on his Naughty List
Rudy put the mirror down, and leapt out of bed.
“I am so screwed!” he mumbled.
Erin Quinn is an award winning author who writes haunting romance for the thinking reader. Her books have been called “riveting,” “brilliantly plotted” and “beautifully written” and have won, placed or showed in in number awards. Look for THE THREE FATES OF RYAN LOVE, coming in January from Pocket Books. Go to www.erinquinnbooks.com for more information.
Calista Fox is a former PR professional, now writing fast-paced, steamy books to set your pulse racing--including the BURNED DEEP trilogy, coming in 2015 from St. Martin's Press! She is an Amazon bestseller and has won Reviewer’s and Reader’s Choice Awards, as well as a Best Book Award, and competitions with publication as the prize.
USA Today bestselling author Mary Leo writes contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, and mystery. She loves to travel for research while she’s writing a book, or for that matter, even when she’s not writing a book . . . which always leads to yet another book.