Can Yani and Gavin go from friends to lovers this Christmas?
Yani Nicolaou is sworn off love for good. After fleeing a bad break-up in London, the only blood, sweat, and tears he has left are for his gyro stall at the Christmas market. Rebound fling? No thanks. He’s sticking to one-night-stands.
Ex-army vet Gavin Richie has even less capacity for romance. Managing a homeless shelter while recovering from injury keeps him far too busy. So what if he’s often alone? He’s content being single, or so he thinks until a chance meeting lights a spark he can’t ignore.
Yani is the warmth and affection Gavin hadn’t known he was missing. As Christmas lights up the city, their lives entwine in more ways than one. Falling for each other is easy. Holding on is harder, unless a hometown Christmas proves their love can last longer than the festive season.
I’m a creature of habit. I have a small list of places that sing to my soul and caught in the midst of Leigh’s words is one of them. There are many reasons why I continue to seek her blissful (okay, not always but I AM happy by the end!) havens but the unending cord that connects her stories is on the top of the list. I am rather fond of all her friends and can’t tell you how happy it makes me when they reappear in a new light. I was bouncing in my seat when I realized Gavin was Wedge from our SAS boys. And it didn’t take me long to place Yani either. I try and pay extra close attention to any background cast in her stories because you never know when they might pop up again. Turns out happy-go-lucky Gavin didn’t have quite the fancy-free life he portrayed. But of course, that’s expected when it comes to Garrett’s guys. When Yani lends a hand to the shelter Gavin runs, the simmer from their first encounter sparks bright and it’s not accidental that their paths continue to cross. Shame Yani has sworn off relationships. But casual is cool. Besides, neither men have the time or energy for anything more. They are stretched thin and running on fumes. Or maybe…is love the missing charge they both so desperately need?
As I mentioned earlier, there’s always loads to like when it comes to Garrett’s books. This time we follow the guys to their hometown. I couldn’t get enough of the market! I’ve never been to Leeds but I feel as though I have. I want to see everything but more than that, I want to eat everything! A rumbling tummy is a common element when I’m reading anything from Leigh. Food is very much comfort here and I adored how Yani embellishes his creations with precision and utmost care. I can always count on any growing hunger to be completely sated by the final pages. And Hometown Christmas was no different, I was delightfully full. Both men were a bit of ‘work in progress’ and I very much enjoyed tagging along their journey.
Ummm, where do I start? It’s easy to say I loved both Gavin and Yani. I loved learning about where they’d been and what they hoped to do. I loved their friends. I loved their ginormous hearts. I loved how despite wanting to care for others, they failed to recognize being cared for was equally important. I loved their passion. I loved their stubborn streaks. I loved how…it may not have been easy to be together but it certainly was worth it. I just plain loved it and I think you will too.
Imperfect men find their perfect match….when neither were looking. Our soldier bears scars….not all are visible. And a succulent reminder that food is far more than nourishment…it’s culture and identity and maybe even, a dash of soul.
If you’re not familiar with Garrett’s books, you should fix that quick…and start here with this lovely story about not only finding your way home but finding your heart’s desires along the way.