Julie Murphy and Sierra Simone strike again in their new Christmas romance book for 2023, A Holly Jolly Ever After!
I immediately fell in love with this holiday romance which uses one of my favorite romance book tropes, the relationship coach trope!
Check out my book review below to see if it’s a book you’ll enjoy reading.
*Disclosure: This post may include affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
A Holly Jolly Ever After Summary:
Kallum Lieberman is the funny one™. As the arguably lesser of the three former members of the boy band INK, he enjoyed his fifteen minutes of fame and then moved home where he opened a regional pizza chain called Slice, Slice, Baby!
He’s living his best dad bod life, hooking up with bridesmaids at all his friends’ weddings. But after an old one-off adult tape is leaked and quickly goes viral, Kallum decides he’s ready to step into the spotlight again, starring in a hot Santa biopic for the Hope Channel.
Winnie Baker did everything right. She married her childhood sweetheart, avoided the downfalls of adolescent stardom, and transitioned into a stable adult acting career.
But after her perfect life falls apart, Winnie is ready to redefine herself—and what better way than a steamier-than-a-steaming-hot-mug-of-cider Christmas movie?
With decade old Hollywood history between them, Winnie and Kallum are both feeling hesitant about their new situation as costars…especially Winnie who can’t seem to fake on screen pleasure she’s never experienced in real life.
She’s willing to do the pleasure research—for science and artistic authenticity, of course. And there’s no better research partner than her costar, Kallum.
But suddenly, Kallum’s teenage crush on Winnie is bubbling to the surface and Winnie might be catching feelings herself.
They say opposites attract, but is this holly jolly ever after really ready for its close-up?
A Holly Jolly Ever After: My Review
Murphy and Simone dazzle again with a Christmas romance book that will have you swooning!
After reading A Merry Little Meet Cute, there was never any question I was going to read whatever Christmas romance Julie Murphy and Sierra Simone cooked up next.
I love that it’s another costars to lovers romance but mixes in the relationship coach trope that I love so much.
In it we meet Winnie who is an actress that has fallen from grace. She grew up as a child and teen actress who was the picture of purity and married at age 18. But after a divorce from her cheating husband, it’s her reputation and career that is in jeopardy.
Ready to reclaim her life and figure out who the real Winnie is, she agrees to star in a steamy Christmas romance movie that is completely off-brand for her and borders the line between steamy romance and adult film.
The only problem is that Winnie has never experience the Big “O” and is struggling to act out her scenes of passion.
Luckily for her, her co-star is Kallum, a former boy band rock star who now rocks the dad bod and who runs a handful of pizza joints who got the starring role because of a leaked tape that showed his prowess in the bedroom.
Now it’s Winnie asking Kallum to help her with “research” so she can adequately portray a woman in the throws of passion.
What transpired was a super cute and definitely steamy romance between a kind man who finally gets to be with the woman he’s been crushing on for years.
It’s also a wonderful transformation for a 32-year-old woman who’s finally claiming her power, standing up to parents who failed her and taking what she wants to find out who she is. I absolutely adored Winnie and Winnie and Kallum together.
Kallum is one of those romance heroes who just makes you smile anytime he’s on the page. I adored his relationship with his family and his former band members but his understanding and openness and just pure sweetness when it came to Winnie was gold.
At one point I was a bit concerned that the moment of conflict would go on forever but I was surprised how communication solved that issue. The book then took a turn exploring Winnie’s understandable concerns about her future and who she could depend on and I thought it was so realistic and a great part to the story.
I feel like Simone loves to bring in a religious/purity angle to a lot of her books and I thought the nod to that signature really worked in this book.
It was such a great juxtaposition with Winnie wrestling with her upbringing and past while currently working with people so free with their love-making and those in the adult film industry.
If you’re looking for a super cute, holiday romance with a swoon-worthy couple that you can’t help but root for then you’ll love this book. I highly recommend it!
Related Book Lists:
- Best Christmas Romance Books
- Best Relationship Coach Romance Books
- New Christmas Romance Books Releasing in 2023