Book Review

Book Review: Lake Mistletoe: A Holly, Jolly, and Steamy Christmas Tale by Amber Kelly

Rating: ☆☆☆
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 224 pages
Author: Amber Kelly
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: November 29th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads


Life in the fast lane is what I’ve been working toward for the last six years. My career was all planned out running one of the hottest hotels in Miami’s South Beach. That was until our playboy owner broke a few rules, and my perfect opportunity crumbled underneath my feet.

So here I am, headed to Lake Mistletoe, a quaint little valley town in Idaho of all places. My grandmother, and namesake, left her Inn to me, and I am now sentenced to the task of getting it prepared to sell at the end of this year’s holiday season. My memories of this Christmas oasis have long since faded, but I’m determined to use this experience to further my career and get back into the hospitality game.

When Keller Harris, Lake Mistletoe’s resident craftsman, and unofficial handyman, offers to help me with the neverending list of repairs and upgrades, it’s the perfect opportunity for me to get hands-on experience. He’s talented, driven, and sexy as sin, but he’s also a know-it-all and completely unimpressed by my business sense. I can learn a lot from him but his stubborn self can also learn a lot from me.

As walls start to fall, literally and figuratively, I begin to realize that success comes in many forms and passion can be found in unexpected places. Will I be able to turn this season into a stepping stone to an exciting new career in Belize?

Or will I discover that everything I ever wanted was tucked away in the Rocky Mountains?


This didn’t really do anything for me. I struggle with holiday reads having a balance between steamy and hallmark. Why can’t I have something in the middle, ya know? This felt like it was trying to push more steam than the actual romance itself and left a lot to be desired for me.

There was too much focus on very random details of Willa’s day to day. Really small details that I was tired of reading about. I didn’t need to know such breakdowns that caused me to start skimming faster and faster to get to actual dialogue and momentum. Steam was thrown in without much lead-up and that felt off/random to me. I wasn’t connected to either of them by the time things started happening.

Christmas/Holiday-wise, this is alive and well in that department. I do love a small town romance and this provided well in that regard. I loved the names for the town’s hotels and all the fun things that were part of the spirit there.

I wish this was a better balance of the two sides. Oh well, another holiday romance that leaves me wanting.

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary Holiday Romance
  • Language: some strong
  • Romance: multiple open door scenes
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: loss of a loved one

Instagram || Goodreads

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