Her Gingerbread Dragon by Elianne Adams (2 stars)
This one started really promising, then lost its way a little by slowing down (a lot), then got interesting again with the hole dragon-hating thing...That unfortunately didn't lead anywhere.
I guess that's for the full-length novels in the series (which I won't be reading anytime soon).
God of Nightmares by Calle J. Brookes (DNF)
I cringed at the blurb...And threw in the towel at the end of the first chapter. I guess I wasn't in the mood for so much "world-building".
Bringing Christmas to the Dragons by Rinelle Grey (DNF)
There's a limited amount of time to grab a reader's attention in a novella. For me, that's one chapter. If the first chapter leaves me cold, the rest won't be any better.
The first chapter in this one, was the equivalent of the Ice Age. Next!
Solstice Wolf by J.K. Harper (1 star)
Rather iffy, but manageable with a slightly PWP-ish "love" scene (no context and rather "cold" characters), and a heroine that didn't know what she wanted until she lost it, and didn't realize that what she thought she wanted turned out to be too good to be true. Lesson learned.
Mated By Christmas by Loribelle Hunt (DNF)
Claiming Their Christmas by Ellis Leigh (3 stars)
It was a little heartbreaking reading about Beast and his lingering feelings about Amber and her death. One one hand he felt guilty, because the witch died instead of him, on the other he still felt rage toward her for having manipulated him, and on the third a complete inability to comprehend just what Amber was supposed to mean to him.
It was a little heartbreaking, and a little angering, really, because I just didn't understand the reasoning behind everything. Why didn't he simply talk to his mate, talk it through with her, when he knew it was hurting her, when he knew he was hurting her. Why did it take him so long to just talk to her, why did it take everybody and their aunt to drum some sense into the guy? I loved his story so much, I loved the ending of Claiming His Desire, and he ruined everything, he even ruined Amber's sacrifice, in this short story.
Desert Yule by Anna Lowe (DNF)
An obvious collection of Christmas-themed epilogues to previous stories in the series. Since I'm not familiar with either the series (the context) or the author, these snippets did nothing for me.
Claimed by Heart by Eris Sage (DNF)
Something was off with this one. Maybe the "older" h/H, maybe the fact they has children from previous relationships, maybe the very slow and uneventful start...Or maybe the bland character and zero chemistry between them.
A Beary Merry Christmas by Vivienne Savage (DNF)
It was rather disappointing that even such a short story didn't really grab my attention. There was just something off, maybe even the fact we're thrown into the story in the middle or after it already happened. The two already got their HEA, what's there more to tell?
Healing Christmas by Bethany Shaw (DNF)
Another one that didn't register on the radar. I didn't care what was the heroine's problem with Christmas, I didn't care how h/H might have gotten together (I didn't get to that part), I didn't care how the plot with the robbers would end...I simply didn't care.
Celebrate Me by Kristen Strassel (DNF)
I know it's a novella, but still, pacing is key. Even knowing when to slow down the story. If you rush things, you'll blow it. And insta-love is rushing things, simple as that. Add to it the fact I didn't understand nor feel the insta-love, and the Romeo-and-Juliet vibe with everybody trying to keep the two apart...I couldn't finish it.
Fascination by Elle Thorne (2 star)
It started well, but then went astray with the main conflict and the slightly silly attempts at arresting the burglar. Also, the connection between h/H didn't really click for me...And the whole panther-polar bear combo was a tad odd.
Maker by Holley Trent (DNF)
The narrative was juvenile, making the characters more young adult than new adult (or whatever the new category is). The style and voice made my teeth ache, the MCs left absolutely no impression and somewhere close to the middle, I stopped caring...And reading.
Furever Yours by Catherine Vale (DNF)
The surprise bun in the oven screamed Harlequin for me, and the fact it happened in a novella wasn't encouraging. To top it off, the narrative style and voice didn't work for me.
Snowbound at Solstice by Lori Whyte (DNF)
I don't share and don't really understand those that do. Fictional or not. Pass!