Welcome to Punya Reviews... Please stay and enjoy! Read My Blog Policies for clarification of my ratings/disclaimer. If the goodreads widgets don't show properly, it's not my fault. ;) All of my reviews contain spoilers. If you don't like spoiler-ish reviews, please don't proceed.

I'm a ThyCa survivor since 2004

Click here to read my interview on Lady Scribes Blog!!

If you're a regular visitor at Punya Reviews..., read reviews, check out promos on new books and enter giveaways etc., please consider becoming a member of this blog, liking my page and follow me on twitter. It'd be of tremendous help for a blogger like me... :)

Letters at Christmas by Amber Lin

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Letters at Christmas (novella)
Men of Fortune #1

Amber Lin
Historical Romance
Pub date: July 7, 2014 (ARC review)

H/h - Captain Hale Martin/Sidony Harbeck
Setting: London, 1815.

Read in July, 2014.
My rating:

                                                  [spoiler alert]

Amber Lin’s Letters at Christmas (Men of Fortune #1) was delightful in one word. This was my first book by her so I was pleasantly surprised. The story was fun with a friends-to-lovers theme that kept me entertained from the first page to the last. TBH, I probably wore this perpetual smile throughout while I was reading it.

Sidony has been waiting for letters for the last 3 years. Letters that were promised to her by someone she thought she loved. She has been heartbroken, disappointed... the tears have long since dried up, but the letters that Hale, her young friend, confidante and lover, promised before he left her for the sea, never arrived. She thinks he has forgotten her, and all that he said were lies.

Even though, at this point, she’s pissed at him, the news of his return to London doesn’t stop Sidony’s heart from beating like a drum. She doesn’t want to show that she cares but when it comes to Hale, she’s helpless. To double her misery (and embarrassment), when Hale finally arrives at her brother’s estate, she’s swinging helpless from a tree, stuck while trying to rescue that goddamned cat of hers, Poppet. And after such a long time, HE had to be the one to discover her that way, and not the way she initially... er, planned; all dressed up and graceful, staring out the window like she doesn’t have a care in the world.

Damned cat!

Despite that less-than-perfect reunion (of sort), Sidony is still mad. She’s also extremely tizzy at being near Hale after so long a time. He has gotten stronger, rougher, without much resembling the young man who left her after she gave him her virginity.

She and Hale... ah, there’s an old history. First love turning into the first taste of passion.

Hale, the bastard son of a viscount, didn’t have much money or prospect in the world. Yet, meeting her brother George as youngsters in school probably changed their lives for the good. Being orphans and spending an awful amount of time on their estate, the three of them came together rather well. But at some point, it appeared that Sidony and Hale’s relationship were going to take a different turn. George found his best friend, while Sidony found the man she could love. Best of all, her affection was returned just as heartily.

But Hale wanted more. He needed to prove himself worthy of Sidony, from which formed this plan to join a ship. At first, this sounded like the best option. Though leaving Sidony made him miserable to the bone, he thought he’s doing it for them both. Hale’s ‘adventures’ hadn’t been something he can really talk about. Those were full of horrid reality that a seaman endures while at the sea. He has experienced things he has no intentions of divulging to anyone. Though Hale was promoted rather early as a captain, he couldn’t send one promised letter to Sidony, all because he was way too busy saving either his own or his crewmen’s lives from one trouble or the next.

But that doesn’t mean Hale never wrote anything to her. He just never had the opportunity to send those out. Before returning to England, he was scared to death that Sidony might have gotten married by now, or she’d be so mad that she’d turn away from him. Would’ve been the right punishment for him, seeing how he wasn’t able to keep his side of the commitment. But had she kept hers? Is she still waiting for him? And so, finding Sidony sill single gave Hale hope; hope that kept him alive in those dreary years. Maybe there’s still time for them and he can convince her that they were meant to be together. Always.


Oh boy, you must read this story only for the snippets of Hale’s letters that are featured at the beginning of each chapter. I wish those were his full missives and not snippets. The best scene of the story has to be when he gives them all to Sidony, his last bargain chip to win her back. Not that she didn’t want to be with him (there was no way these two could deny each-other for long) but that scene kinda sealed the deal for their future.

There was also a secondary romance between George and some widow from the next estate. I don’t know, their relationship seemed rather hazy, as if I was missing something there. I would’ve loved to know what kept disturbing George so much.

I never had any doubt that Hale and Sidony were just meant to be. Always appreciate when an author can put so much love and sweetness into a novella-length story without either making it feel rushed or overwhelming. Though a few more chapters would’ve been great, I’m still glad to have read it. 4 stars. Definitely going to check out the next in the series sometimes later.

“Letters at Christmas” is currently a freebie at some major retailers but I don’t think it’s a permanent freebie, so grab a copy while you can!

This ARC was provided to me by Entangled Scandalous via netgalley which didn’t influence my review and rating in any way.


Post a Comment

◈ Comments? Your Thoughts? Just let me know! :) ◈

My Favorite Quotes


My Photo
I'm a simple girl. I love to read in my spare time and do reviews the books I read. I also write, mostly songs/poems, though I'm not published. I love music and traveling. Sometimes, I wish I could live inside a book, having my own HEA. :)
View my complete profile


historical (507) contemporary (505) other authors (466) book spotlight/promo (448) blog tour (447) erotica (362) author giveaway (332) novella (218) paranormal (99) medieval (95) new adult (95) arc/copy netgalley-edelweiss (86) fantasy (85) highlander (57) freebie (55) cover reveal (53) requested review (49) western (41) guest post (29) time travel (24) elizabeth hoyt (23) charlotte featherstone (22) skye warren (22) anthology (20) loretta chase (20) gigolo (19) bonnie dee (18) teresa medeiros (16) virgin hero (16) sabrina jeffries (15) scottish (15) 5+stars (14) carla kelly (14) emily larkin (13) kerrigan byrne (13) kinley macgregor (12) tracy anne warren (12) anna campbell (11) pirate (11) alexa riley (10) carolyn jewel (10) elliot mabeuse (10) lisa kleypas (10) sherry thomas (10) gaelen foley (9) julia keaton (9) karyn gerrard (9) katy evans (9) ramona flightner (9) saskia walker (9) sylvain reynard (9) sylvia day (9) karen marie moning (8) debra anastasia (7) gina conkle (7) irish (7) judith mcnaught (7) pamela morsi (7) holly bush (6) jessica jefferson (6) julia quinn (6) karen ranney (6) linda broday (6) lorraine heath (6) maya banks (6) monica mccarty (6) scottie barrett (6) vikings (6) amy rose bennett (5) elizabeth elliott (5) judith james (5) laura lee guhrke (5) meredith duran (5) meta mathews (5) rl mathewson (5) sarah ballance (5) uncatagorized (5) charlotte stein (4) classic-fiction-poetry (4) courtney milan (4) lacey silks (4) loni lynne (4) mariana zapata (4) melanie marchande (4) roxy sloane (4) shelby reed (4) shoshanna evers (4) victoria hanlen (4) victoria roberts (4) wendy lacapra (4) alison richardson (3) alison shaw (3) anabelle bryant (3) barbara longley (3) biker (3) claire kent (3) deb marlowe (3) delphine dryden (3) diana bold (3) edie harris (3) eliza lloyd (3) elizabeth moss (3) eva gale (3) isadora rose (3) jackie barbosa (3) jenn langston (3) juliet dark (3) juliette miller (3) kresley cole (3) lana grayson (3) lauraine snelling (3) lisa valdez (3) lori brighton (3) lynsay sands (3) m/m (3) margaret mallory (3) morgan o'neill (3) petra march-petra f. bagnardi (3) rachel l. demeter (3) sarah maclean (3) summer devon (3) summer devon-kate rothwell (3) suzanne ferrell (3) victoria lynne (3) aileen mcnaughton (2) alianne donnelly (2) amber lin (2) annabel joseph (2) ashlyn macnamara (2) author spotlight/promo (2) becca dale (2) casey wilder (2) catherine bybee (2) catherine laroche (2) charming man (2) cynthia wicklund (2) debra glass (2) elise de sallier (2) elizabeth taylor george (2) emily bascom (2) erica taylor (2) evangeline anderson (2) evangeline collins (2) eve montelibano (2) evelyn pryce (2) janine ashbless (2) jayne blue-nina sharpe (2) jenika snow (2) jennifer mcquiston (2) kate mckinley (2) kitty thomas (2) laura frantz (2) leigh bale (2) lola rayne (2) margaret madigan (2) margo maguire (2) marie medina (2) marliss melton (2) marlow kelly (2) michelle diener (2) nancy haviland (2) natasha blackthorne (2) natasha storm (2) olivia fields (2) own (2) ramona gray (2) richard long (2) romantic suspense (2) roxy soule (2) sandra schwab (2) sci fi (2) silvia violet (2) sports (2) virginia henley (2) Sophie Dash (1) alissa johnson (1) ann clement (1) annika martin-carolyn crane (1) as fenichel (1) ashlyn montgomery (1) belle aurora (1) bn toler (1) character interview (1) christina phillips (1) cj archer (1) david meredith (1) dee tenorio (1) eliza gordon (1) elizabeth anthony (1) georgie lee (1) hannah fielding (1) ir (1) jessica wilde (1) julia london (1) lecia cornwall (1) lee debourg (1) lexy timms (1) lisa manuel-allison chase (1) lisa marie rice (1) lisa renee jones (1) lynne barron (1) mary jo putney (1) maureen mcmahon (1) robin schone (1) sydney jane baily (1) tarah scott (1) thriller (1) wendy lyn watson (1)

punyareviews.blogspot.com Webutation