The Matzah Ball by Jean Meltzer

 Release Date - September 28, 2021


With many Christmas romances out there, The Matzah Ball was a refreshing change of pace. I'm not Jewish, so I did spend some time hitting certain words on my Kindle to get a definition, but that wasn't a big deal. Context usually made it clear.

Rachel Rubenstein-Goldblatt hides a secret from her parents. She's actually a bestselling author of Christmas romances. When she learns her publisher is not extending her contract, she's stunned. She needs the income, and that leads to her proposal. She'll write a Jewish romance, even though Hannukah doesn't lend itself to the same magical atmosphere as Christmas does.

To pull it off, she needs a ticket to attend a sold-out Jewish dance. The music and festivities may be exactly what she needs to find the magic for her new book. The problem is the event's host and organizer is her archenemy, Jacob Greenberg.

Jacob broke her heart when they were 12. She hasn't seen him in decades, but she's not about to forgive his actions. Meanwhile, he's the key to her securing a ticket to the soldout event. Something weird happens though. She starts to see the magic in Hannukah, and that leads to her wondering if she's had it all wrong.

The Matzah Ball is a lighthearted, tender romance with humor and passion. It's obvious that Rachel had a bit of finding herself, maybe even a little growing up, to do. The blurb doesn't go into the truth about Rachel, but it brings up a chronic health condition that I have known about for over 20 years as a friend has it. I liked that it was approached with realism in this book. 

The other thing I loved was Jacob's grandmother. Toby sounds like a gem, and I'd love to spend time with her. Her rugelach sounded fantastic, even if it's not a healthy treat. I found myself longing for some every time it was brought up. I'll have to try my hand at making it this holiday season.

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