She's dead broke. And eviction looms. On Christmas Eve antique consultant Madison Knight takes a phone call from local rancher Zach Murdock. Through a mix-up at an estate sale, Madison's company purchased his grandmother's beloved painting. He offers double the money for its return.
Madison risks her job to track down the artwork, but success falls short when she's stuck in a blizzard. Stranded, she seeks help from a frontier family. Are they living off the grid, or did she somehow travel through time?
Zach's the only person who knows her plan. He also knows a secret about his gran's painting. It's up to him to rescue Madison, but maybe he's not cut out to be a hero.
D. K. Deters is an award-winning fantasy and historical romance author. She was a communications consultant before turning to a writing career. Like many historical romance authors, she's always had a deep interest in history, and the nineteenth century is her favorite. When she's not writing, she enjoys spending time with her adult children and their families. D. K. has many hobbies, but her favorite is restoring old dollhouses.
I don't generally read time travel stuff but tried this one and enjoyed it. I received a review copy from the author. Thanks for the review copy and the opportunity to review your book, @dk_deters
Detailed review on Sunday, insha'Allah.
Updated 13Jan2019: The story is about three individuals - Madison, Zachary and Gran. Their is only one thing that they have in common - they have travelled in time.
It is a sweet story based on time travel. The real essence of the story, however, is about Christmas spirit. Madison goes out of her way, almost risking her job to get the painting that was said to be very important for an old lady. She also exhibits the same kindness to the young boy in the cabin when she travels back in time and gifts her watch to Shawn (present day Zachary).
Christmas Once Again by D.K. Deters was a light, fluffy read free of the angst and sometimes tiring depth usually surrounding young adult novels. For a debut novella, it was quite sweet and the holiday atmosphere around it was also enjoyable. The characters weren't very developed, but that worked with the size of the story, and the plot was clear and easy to follow. This novella followed some familiar tropes, although I wish that the female characters were more prominent and the whole story was more diverse. The time travel was enjoyable, although I don't read much sci-fi, I did like that. Neither was this too Christmas-y, which was a plus, but it needed more drafting and editing because some dialogue was too stiff and early interactions between Madison and Josh were already too romantic. For example, in one of their first interactions, Madison thinks: "His voice, smooth as a caress, left a trail of goosebumps on her arms." I think this story deserves a 3.5 stars and it was an worthwhile read.
Reviewed for Rosie Amber's Book Review Team, via an ARC from the author
Madison Knight is an antique consultant with financial problems, a demanding boss, and no one with whom to spend Christmas. She's looking forward to shutting the door on the snowy season and getting cosy all alone. Then customer Zach Murdock gets in touch to say he wants to retrieve his grandmother's beloved painting, because he should never have sold it to the company Madison works for. Unfortunately, retrieving it is more complicated than Madison originally thinks it will be.
The snow gets worse, and Madison gets stranded. She seeks help from a local family, but there's something decidedly odd about them. They seem kind of... old fashioned.
This story is not overtly Christmassy, which, for me, was a plus; it's not as sugar-coated as some. I love a time travel story; it's the slow dawning of what has happened, and the gaping chasms in language and technology that never fail to amuse. This is a good story, and nicely plotted, but I felt it could have done with a bit more spit and polish; a bit more re-drafting of both narrative and dialogue, and thinking through of the emotions of the characters when they discover what has occurred. But it was an enjoyable half hour's reading, nevertheless.
This sweet time travel romance has everything you need for a great holiday read by the fireplace. A quick read of a novella, I zipped through it in record time, totally caught up with the adventures of the plucky but down-on-her-luck heroine involved in recovering an antique painting with a mysterious past. I can't say too much because it's a fast-paced story and I don't want to give anything away!
A well written novella with great sense of place and timing, I'd have loved for it to be a longer, drawn out story but as it is, it's a perfect cocoa by the firelight read, a great escape for a few quiet hours of down-time. D.K.Deters is a new to me author, but someone I'm putting on my watch list because I'd love to read something longer... hopefully soon!
I really enjoyed this quick, Christmas, time travel romance. My rating 4.25.
Madison Knight is facing a rather bleak holiday: no money, no fiancé since she discovered his betrayal, and a job on the edge. She can’t have any mishaps at her work, Once Again Antiques, or her boss will terminate her.
She gets a call from a man with a sexy voice claiming that his grandmother’s antique painting was sold to the company by mistake. Zach Murdock offers to pay double for the return of the painting. At first, the piece shows up in inventory and Madison agrees to sell it back for the standard restocking fee. Then she learns the artwork was actually sold and she sets out to locate the piece. In the process of trying to recover the painting, Madison gets stranded in a blizzard.
Suddenly Madison finds herself in unfamiliar territory. She slowly suspects she is out of place even as she befriends a young boy despite the skepticism of his parents.
Meanwhile, Zach has set out to meet up with Madison but fears that he will be too late. Will Madison be able to get back to her SUV and her proper place? If Zach can help rescue her how will she react to what he reveals?
I enjoyed the lively characters of Madison, Zach, and even Zach’s grandmother. The writing is direct and the plot is engaging. The story is complete although short. It gave me a good taste of Ms. Deters's writing and I would like to read a longer story by her. Christmas is a nice time setting although not a crucial element. I recommend this story to readers who enjoy time travel and sweet romance.
If a book has any chance of keeping me engrossed, it has to make me smile or laugh with some witty dialogue or one liners. This was a gem. "BB had instigated her nickname, Becky the Bitch, claiming it added to her persona. She ran the shipping room like a cutthroat lawyer working on an end of the month billing." So the writing is fun up to snuff. Clean, pacey, witty, and well-written.
How's the story? I found it clever and one particular aspect the author handled quite well was the time travel. It involved going back to 1875. The people in that era were unfamiliar with cars, watches with alarms, or towing companies. There was a funny exchange with one of the characters asking why you would want a toe company? She was diligent in not letting the present day creep into the bygone era. I'd also say she had just the right number of characters for a book of this length. We weren't overwhelmed and everyone had a purpose to move the story forward.
This is a sweet romance (the characters keep their clothes on) which was refreshing. A quick read which was very entertaining. Five shiny stars!
Anyone who knows me knows that I can't resist a time travel book, or in this case, a time travel short story. DK Deters has written a sweet, festive tale.
Madison Knight works for Once Again Antiques. On Christmas Eve she gets a phone call from Zach Murdock who tells her that his grandmother's precious painting has being sold by mistake. Madison promises to retrieve it and make his grandmother's Christmas but in doing so she goes on a little time travel adventure of her own. The painting has special powers!
Christmas Once Again is a really quick read at 43 pages, but still full of story and depth. I liked the main characters very much, especially Zach, but all were well drawn. The ending has a nice touch to it and, as always with time travel, I loved the way that what happened when Madison travelled into the past came through into the present.
If you want a quick, festive, time travelling read then you can't go wrong with this short story. It has warmth and spirit and I enjoyed it a lot.
Madison needs money. Will her New Year's bonus from Once Again Antiques be a good one? Not if she messes up again or isn't diligent to work hard from home.
Zachary's gran has lost a painting or more accurately, the painting accidentally got sold last week. Gran wants it back. Why is it so special? Supposedly this painting has time travel magic!
Uh oh! A computer glitch didn't reveal to Madison that the painting was actually sold to a new owner the previous day. What is Madison to do now? Zach wants that painting back and is not going to take "NO" for an answer. The snow is coming down hard. Will the new owner even consider selling it back? What happened on December 24th, 1875?
Mostly well written, this is a short, sweet, CLEAN read. I did find an error when the spelling of 'breaks" should be 'brakes'! I was provided a copy of this book by the author. That has not influenced my review. The thoughts and comments above are my own. Thanks, Liz
A wonderful short read. Warmth and emotive but don't think you'll miss miss out because of the length. You don't, .the characters are full and you get a real bond with them in just a few words. She is flat broke, alone at Christmas and heartsore. He is the grandson of a wealthy cattle baron's wife. What do they have in common - a painting that was sold in error at an estate sale and his grandmother desperately wants it back. Even if she has come up with a crazy story about it letting her time travel. What happens when she tries to get the painting back (as her good deed for the year)? Why is a silver wrist watch held to be so intrinsically valuable? Will they both learn that time flows in strange and mysterious ways leading to possible love and contentment? I received a copy for a honest review.
Madison has lost her fiancé, is broke, and is on the verge of losing her job when she gets a call from a man who wants his grandmother’s painting back. She is immediately attracted to his voice and wants to help him. This all falls in the middle of a massive snowstorm right before Christmas. This is a romantic time travel story layered with mystery. What is so special about that painting? I like how everything is tied together as Madison attempts to do a good deed. “Christmas Once Again” is a fun short story to read by the fire during the busy holiday season.
You don't have to love time travel to love this story. What a great read. My only issue is that it left me wanting more! Lovely Madison Knight works for an antique store. The store buys a beautiful winter landscape at an estate sale. But, the owner didn't intend for the painting to be sold. She swears it's magical and she wants it back. Her grandson, Zach wanting to please his 92 year-old gran, must get that landscape and Madison is willing to help. Too late she finds out the store has already sold it. What happens next will keep you on the edge of your seat! Enjoy the ride.
I chose to read this short story, Christmas Once Again, when it was submitted to Rosie Amber's Book Review Team. I received a copy from the author but this does not alter my review in any way.
I didn't do any investigations so had no idea what this story was about, other than Christmas, until I read it. Actually it is not a particularly Christmassy story at all, although it does take place on Christmas Eve.
Madison Knight is broke and working for Once Again Antiques when she gets a call from a Zachary Murdock because his grandmother's painting has been sold to the shop by mistake and he wants to buy it back.
That initially appears to be no problem until Madison discovers that the painting has already been sold on. The weather is atrocious with heavy snow but Madison goes above and beyond the call of duty to get the painting back.
This is a well-written story with a time travel twist, which I always struggle to get my head around, but it worked well and delivered a nice ending which is just what you want in a Christmas story.
CHRISTMAS ONCE AGAIN is a heartwarming romance with just the right amount of mystery to keep you turning pages. Madison Knight is an antique consultant who sells a painting that is more than it appears. Through it she meets a person from her distant past and discovers that Christmas is indeed a time of love, miracles and magic. This is the first D.K. Deters story I’ve read and I look forward to more. It was thoroughly charming.
May the 4th seemed like a good day to try a new author and have a little time travel fun. This is a super quick read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Very likable characters. If my husband was a reader he would love it because it’s Christmas and he’s such a fan.
I’m a fan of antiques, historical fiction and a little romance. This book covered all of that. I wish I could time travel but since I can’t I’ll enjoy it in a lovely story.
Review: This was a short (novella length) holiday story with a time-travel twist that was intriguing. All the major characters were connected through the time travel—which was handled by a mysterious painting. Though it is technically a Christmas story, there’s very little of the usual trappings of a holiday story beyond it taking place on Christmas Eve. It’s a sweet romance that has a satisfying ending.
What I liked: The time travel aspect was a fun twist to a sweet holiday romance. And the way the author tied Madison, Zach, and his grandmother together is done well. Having Madison go out in bad weather to try to right a wrong shows that she has integrity (if not good sense!) and she gets stranded in the blizzard—but not in her time. The twist with the name of the little boy she meets is wonderful.
What I didn’t like: It was very short so that didn’t leave much room for details. I’d have liked a little more description or depth, but that’s a minor thing. There were also a couple very minor editorial typos.
Recommendation: For a quick, sweet holiday romance read with a time travel twist, pick this one up. It’s fun, easy to read and has a HEA ending that satisfies.
Thanks to the author for providing this free ARC in exchange for an honest review.
~I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review~
I highly recommend this book especially if you are looking for a quick read. This novella is a beautiful story taking place around the holidays with some time travel thrown in. Who doesn't love that idea? I won't lie, a few pages in, I did not think I would like it but I ended up falling in with it. What I was worried about not like was the time travel concept which is the whole point of the novella. To me, time travel is overly done but I am always willing to give it a try. The author handled the time travel component fantastically. Time travel in books is either too scientific or barely acknowledged. There was a perfect balance.
I felt more of a connection to these characters in 43 pages than I do with characters in 200 pages or longer. Deters was able to make you fall in love with them in a few words. Thank you for that.
A well-written story about a painting that helps two women time travel at separate times.One woman goes back and gives a little boy a watch but the other woman has travelled twice and met the little boy both times, all three times on Christmas eve. When the first women's painting is sold by mistake her Grandson Zach Murdock phones Madison Knight's company telling her the painting had been sold by mistake and his 92 year old Grandmother is frantic. Madison finds the new owner of the painting and buys it back but her car crashes and she finds herself back in time where she meets Shawn Zachary Murdock who is eight. This is a new Author to both writing books by the looks of it and also to myself I will be looking to see if she puts out more. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
A sweet romance story. With this book being a novella, I wasn’t sure how well time travel would fit in a small amount of pages, but the author did a fabulous job picking the right moment to place Madison into 1875. Packed with lots of interesting twists with a painting, Zach’s grandmother and his childhood, made this story a fun read. I enjoyed the plot, which kept me turning the pages, and Zach’s grandmother’s explanation tied all the pieces neatly together. If you are looking for a Christmas story with a snowy setting and a time travel trip this short story is definitely worth the read. Rating 4 Stars. Reviewed for Still Moments Magazine.
This was a wonderful and cute book to read during Christmas season. The plot was intriguing and engaging. It's very easy to get into the world and lives of the characters. And the romance between them was quite sweet as well. However, I found it too short. And sometimes the story seemed like rushed. Despite this, I think the characters were well-built, with a proper and coherent background. If you're looking for a cute, light-hearted short Christmas book, look no further this is it! Real rating 3.5 stars I received a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review
Short and sweet. If your looking for a quick read this is definitely for you. Only have an hour or so this short romance will be perfect. Is written well the story although short runs smoothly and easily. I love the way she has imputed the time-travel everything comes together in a sweet hopeful end. Thank you to Netgalley/ D.K Deters/ The Wild Rose Press.Inc
Christmas Once Again, the short novella by D.K. Deters, contains most of what you’re seeking in a cute Christmas escape—a little romance, a blizzard, a handsome hunk and a young gal looking for, well what else, love. Throw in a mysterious painting with mystical powers and a little time travel and you have the mix for an entertaining excursion for a “cold winter’s night.”
A short, fun, quirky story about love and time travel and the unsual ways fate uses to bring two people together over time. A short story that is well worth reading, and one that is in itself complete. A good read at any time - but of course - especially int he time around Christmas. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
I really loved this short story it’s quick and fun to read with a lovely Christmas undertone The idea is far fetched but romantic and all the characters likeable if shirt snappy Christmas tale is what you are looking for this is it Do t take it too seriously and you will love it
I really liked the premise of this story. Broke girl, trying to stay afloat and survive a bad breakup. Instacrush with a new client. The time travel element added a neat twist. Even though it was a short story, I felt that the relationship between the characters could have been more established. For me, the "romance" jumped from phone flirtation to couple status without any justification. I did enjoy the story and think it makes a pleasant read for any time of year.