One Christmas Wish by Brenda Jackson
Release Date - October 26, 2021
One Christmas Wish is the fifth book in the Catalina Cove romance series. I've read a couple other books in this series. I adored Vashti and Sawyer's rebudding romance. I loved watching Ashley get to know her husband all over again. I had high hopes for the latest book for that reason.
Vaughn Miller's been released from prison following a wrongful conviction. He's back in Catalina Cove to start over. Two years in prison taught him who his true friends are.
Sierra Crane suffered two blows at once. At the same time, her best friend was losing her battle against cancer, Sierra learned her husband was unfaithful. Worse, he wanted nothing to do with Sierra's goddaughter, a young girl Sierra vowed to take care of when her friend died. After her divorce, Sierra moved herself and Teryn back to her hometown, Catalina Cove, to start a new life running a cafe.
It's at her cafe that Sierra meets Vaughn. She knew of him as he was a few years ahead of her in high school, but she never gave him a second thought. Her attraction to him is hard to resist, but she's sworn off men for good, so she cannot let that distract her from the goal of being the best replacement mom possible.
I wanted to love One Christmas Wish as much as I did the other two books. I never felt the same pull. Sierra was a bit unlikeable to me. She's focused so much on her hatred of her husband that she lets it spill over into an "all men must be jerks" fixation.
I never loved Vaughn either. Sierra makes it clear that she wants little to do with him, but he keeps pushing. But all the while, he's constantly doing an "only if you really want me, but you really need to want me..." deal that turned me off. I didn't like them together for that reason and that made for a challenging read.
As much as I've loved Catalina Cove and its residents, this book ended up being a miss for me.