Deck the Halls

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 17 Oct 2017

Member Reviews

Very sweet, tender, heartfelt, redemptive, clean romance, just right for the holidays.
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A second chance Christmas story, this was a good read and the characters were well written
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After seeing George's transformation in the the previous installments in this series it was really wonderful to see him get a full HEA in this sweet Christmas novella. I really loved the love story that Donna Alward crafted for him in this story with a woman from his past. I wasn't sure what to make of Amy at first, but I really liked her and loved her and George together. These two had a lot of unresolved issues thanks to their shared past loss and I loved that they were both able to move on together in this story. It was all so sweet and heartfelt and made Deck the Halls a perfect Christmas story. Like with all the other books by Donna Alward, I really recommend this story.
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I've got to say, this author didn't gloss over the harsh realities of military veterans. PTSD. Financial trouble. Difficulty dealing with reality. Guilt hanging over his head. The hero is a real heart-wrencher, and I couldn't help but root for him to find his happy ending, and did he ever! This romance is sweet, full of heart and passion, and has plenty of Christmas-themed joy!
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All the  things   i look for in a holiday  romance was in ythis story .  Sweet romance  and a nice resolution and holiday  cheer
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Cute and quick Christmas romance. In this book, the reader gets a look more into George's past. I'd recommend at least reading the first book in this series before this one, to at least get introduced to George. He was a soldier whose best friend was killed, which caused him to have PTSD. He went into a destructive mode, and ended up homeless. He's finally getting his life back on track, but he still has some issues. In this story, Amy is George's best friend's sister, and she has tracked George down. She wants to know more about what happened to her brother, but George doesn't want to get into it because it brings up bad memories. Amy has tenacity though, and...

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George Reilly, a former veteran, lost himself after he returned home from the war. He still feels guilty that his best friend died in an ambush. After all these years he's finding purpose in Darling, Vermont until Amy Merck, his dead friend's sister, tracks him down and wants to know about her brother's death. Both have suffered severe emotional trauma. Can they help each other find the peace that they need? This is a deeply emotional story that touched my heart. The characters are well written. I was immediately pulled into their story. I could feel the pain. Donna Alward highlighted how difficult it is to deal with loss as well as the guilt that can destroy a person's...

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As I always do I want to start by thanking St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for providing us with a copy of this book so that we could bring you this review.

I have a strict rule no Christmas anything before Thanksgiving, so right on Thanksgiving night I began reading all my Christmas books for this year. So for the next few days you will be a new Christmas book.

What a great way to start the season than reading a book about a man who has seen the lowest one can see. He has been homeless, struggled with dealing with the after effects of war and has suffered indignities no one should have to go through. Then he finds his own kind of angel and starts to work towards turning his life...

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George and Amy's story was just too real for me. Instead of enjoying the story, I ended up deeply empathizing with the characters. The novella depressed me more than entertained me. Donna Alward is an amazing author and this story was well-written as well. But, I couldn't get out of my own head to enjoy the story. 

However, I do think this would be great for the right readers.
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DECK THE HALLS - Donna Alward

#3.5 in the Darling VT romance series

HOLIDAY WARMTH - 4 stars

Plot - 4 stars - George is starting over in Darling VT after a difficult time in the military, then spending time homeless and wandering. Amy has been searching for him for years. When her brother Ian was killed in battle, she wanted closure by talking to his best friend George, but she hasn't been able to find him until now.

Writing - 4 stars - Alward always adds such a sweet quality to her writing that I'm immediately drawn into the warmth of the story and the setting she describes so well. Even though she is discussing some difficult subjects in this book (PTSD, survivor guilt)...

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George is trying to move forward from his past. He is no longer has a job and finally has a job he likes. His past comes back right before Christmas as his former brother in arms sister visits him while at work. Looking for closure after her brother’s death in the Middle East she is hocked by how much George has changed. Both effected by their past and healing one another ina time when the Christmas spirit is alive.
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This installment in the Darling, VT series focuses on George. Homeless and a vagrant when helped by Aiden and Laurel, he has been working at The Ladybug Garden Center for a while now. With the help of his new friends and a compassionate town, he now has his own little apartment. Despite his good fortune, he still suffers from his past that landed him on the streets. Like many veterans today, George lost his best friend in combat. Returning home to face his friend's family was impossible. He didn't keep his friend safe, and he lost his life because of George. Instead, George returned home and followed a few different paths before landing on the streets. 

Fifteen years later, the...

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Deck the Halls is a lovely second chance romance in the Darling, VT series written by author Donna Alward. Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for the advance copy.
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Amy Merck headed to Darling, VT, with one thing in mind: to locate her twin brother’s best friend George and find out exactly how Ian died in combat fifteen years earlier. She entered the Ladybug Garden Center with determination, and faced off with George in a quiet corner of the lot. Realizing her straight-forward questioning was not successful; Amy tried a softer way, by bringing George lunch and agreeing not to discuss Ian’s death.

George refused to talk about Ian, because he felt responsible for his death. His deeply held guilt drove him into homelessness, and until he’d drifted into Darling, he hadn’t known acceptance and friendship in fifteen years – since his days in the Army, when...

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I received an arc copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion of it and this book was just okay. Amy is searching for answers about the death of her twin brother who was killed while deployed. She finally finds George, who was with her brother when he died. George suffered from PTSD, was homeless and really didn't want to go back to that time when his life was slowly coming back together.
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I do love a second chance romance. This one was so sweet. I fell in love with the small town of Darling. It certainly lives up to its name. George has led a difficult life, a veteran who lost his best friend on the job. He feels so guilty it majorly impacts his life. Ultimately it makes him homeless. Thanks to a few kind people, he starts to rebuild his life.When we meet George he is quietly living his life, working at the local garden centre. Trying his best but not really dealing with his ghosts. Georges peaceful life comes crashing down around him when Amy arrives, looking for answers as to what happened with her brother. George doesn't want to relive what happened,he feels too...

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The perfect love story for Christmas this book deals with PTSD, homelessness, redemption, self forgiveness, letting go of the past, that family can be anyone who cares for you and finding out that there are all types of love in the world. And that you deserve it...to be loved!

A lot of content is packed into this novella and it will bring tears to your eyes as well as delight the reader as they are taken through the life of George since his friend's death in the Middle East and he came home from duty. Sad to say that this story happens more often than not but it is uplifting on so many levels that it will give people dealing with this medical condition hope that there is a better...

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This is a quick Christmas read that hits many favorite tropes such as second chances, reunion, small-town setting and a military hero.

Life has changed for veteran George. With the help of new friends, he’s made the transition from homeless to someone with a steady job and a small apartment. When Amy, the sister of his dead friend, turns up in town, looking for closure regarding the death of her brother, George is scared. Even though his he’s turned his life around, his PTSD threatens to overtake him along with guilt.

This is a sweet romance, and the hero and heroine tiptoe around each other at first, the hero’s problems slowing the pace. I found the heroine a little annoying because she...

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I like military romances, but I'm not a very big fan of veteran romances. It's a very American subject and I don't really feel connected to it very much. I also prefer spontaneity and fun and spirited romances. Here, George and Amy spent more time slowly turning around each other, both trying not to hurt the other, and being so careful that it slowed the story down. That fits the theme and the setting of the book, but it just wasn't my speed. That's not to say that it wasn't a good romance novel because it was. It's a heartwarming story about two people who have experienced a lot of problems who are slowly working through all that with the purpose of...

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