An O'Brien Family Christmas by Sherryl Woods
Published: September 27, 2011
Genre: Fiction, Romance, Christmas
My Rating: 3/5
Summary (from chapters.ca):
Dating Matthew O'Brien - a playboy and a younger man - cost Laila Riley her career and her parents' respect. A high price, even for love, and when Laila decides it was just a fling, she breaks it off, despite Matthew's objections.
But the O'Brien family has other ideas, and they conspire to get Laila to join them on a Dublin holiday. It's a great time to get away from it all, but Laila has reservations about the trip. Matthew's bound to be there, and she's far from immune. What if she can't resist temptation?
Meanwhile, the O'Briens are in an uproar over matriarch Nell's unexpected romance with an old flame. Will she follow her heart despite the risks? And will Laila discover that some risks are actually once-in-a-lifetime opportunities?
This is my first taste of the Chesapeake Shores novels and as usual, I seem to come to the table late. An O'brien Family Christmas is the second to last novel in the series.
As far as Christmas novel's go, this one was the least Christmasy of all of the Holiday Reads 2011. The only part that really made it fit the bill was the title and the fact that it took place over the holiday season. I was really missing that happy holiday feel when I read this book. I wanted a HUGE Christmas morning and lots of family drama and even more 'happy-ending' miracles... you know, all the typical cheese of a Christmas book.
Being part of a long series that I haven't read, it was a bit of a challenge for me to figure out who was who and what was what - if that makes sense. Things moved a little faster than I was expecting and parts of the story seemed to lack the detail that I am used to. I am not sure if this is the writing style of Sherryl Woods or if it is simply do to the fact that things had been explained in previous novels. I did, however, enjoy the family dynamic of the O'Brien clan. Family is a huge part of the Christmas season and when you get everyone together, it makes it a true adventure.
Overall, I feel that this novel was a bit of a miss for me. While the romance part of the novel was good, I was looking for more in the holiday end. I feel like I may be short-billing it because I haven't read the rest of the series but even series reads should be more stand-alone... just in case!