Once Upon A Romance

Once Upon A Romance's Review Of...
Holiday Op an Anthology


Cover art: Holiday Op Reviewer: Robyn Roberts
Title: Holiday Op
Author: Lori Avocato, Tara Nina, Anne Elizabeth, Lia DeAngelo and DC DeVane
Publisher: Highland Press
ISBN-13: 978-0-9842499-2-3
Release Date: November 2009
Genre/Sub-genre: Contemporary Romance
Year/Setting: Various locations around the world
Overall Rating: 4.0
Sexual Content Rating: Subtle
Language (Profanity/Slang) Content Rating: None
Violent Content Rating: None
Holiday Op Website/Blog: www.holidayop.us

The Stocking by DC DeVane
Marcy Grayson has been in love with Paul Callahan for years. So when a romantic evening doesn’t lead to the proposal she expects, the wind is let out of her sails. As Paul heads off to basic training on his way to becoming an Army Ranger, she tries to move on and finds it harder than she thought. So when a dog, a stocking with a bear, and an inflatable raft collide—who will come out as the victor?

A cute story with a lot of holiday heart. It was a great story to start the book with. While the beginning confused me a bit, the back-story got me up to speed and had me rooting for a happily ever after ending.

Tied with a Bow by Anne Elizabeth
Devin Walds is an EOD specialist. When he manages to disarm a bomb in a large office building, he immediate feels a connection to the artist who painted the pictures in the office. When he sees a photo of her, he can’t shake the connection he feels to this unknown woman. When a chance meeting puts them together at the same supermarket, he knows he can’t let Kathryn Marie go. He would go to the ends of the earth—and risk his life to keep hers safe. Too bad someone else wants her dead…will Devin die with her?

This story is tied as my favorite in the book. It was fast-paced and brings back my belief in love at first sight. Devin is so smitten with Kathryn Marie from the moment he sees her photo. The story takes off from the first pages and doesn’t stop until the end. I couldn’t put the story down and feared for both Devin and Kathryn Marie’s lives. A must read.

Christmas to the Rescue by Lia DeAngelo
Annabelle Foster has recently been restationed to Kodiak, Alaska as a Coast Guard rescue swimmer. She is career focused and doesn’t have time for men, until a Food Specialist, Tony Lombardi, catches her attention with his cookies and treats. He thinks that the way to Annabelle’s heart is through her stomach and starts to work his way into her life with his food. Will she let down the barriers she has erected to let him in?

A very sweet love story—and not just the cookies. Tony sees a lost quality in Annabelle that I missed at first. He is right on target with his assessment. She’s walled herself off and it keeps her from forming any attachments to others—especially men. Will he be able to work his way over the walls and into her heart? Or will he be shot down and sent packing?

All I want for Christmas is a Marine by Tara Nina
Mitch Sinclair and his Force Recon Marines are the best at finding hard to find people. They are on a mission to locate the kidnapped daughter of a prominent nuclear scientist. When the mission changes to extracting the hostage, it also becomes more dangerous. They are fleeing the most deadly killer in North Korea. Will they be able to save the beautiful girl or will all of them be dead before dawn? And when the girl, Allie, decides the only thing she wants for Christmas is Mitch the Marine, will it compromise their mission even more?

Tied as my favorite story in the anthology. It was packed with action, suspense and a girl with a ton of spunk. From the stiletto heel incident in the beginning to the last page, it was a can’t-put-it-down read. There’s just something about those Marines that gets my heart pumping.

Mission Mistletoe by Lori Avocato
When Air Force Nurse, Prue, falls out of a helicopter, she wonders if she will make it out of the New Mexico desert alive. When a paratrooper she calls "Slick" comes to help her until a rescue can be achieved, she’s not sure she wants this particular rescuer. But his Newman blue eyes give her pause—as does his excellent care. Will Prue decide Slick deserves a chance?

A sweet short story that had me laughing. Prue is so afraid of flying and to fall out of a helicopter on your first flight is just unheard of. She has some funny self-talk and I was giggling at her thoughts. While Slick comes across as a bit of a jerk at first, we get to see who he really is on the inside.


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