Her Christmas Hero by Susanne Matthews @Jandsmatt #Review #ComingSoon
Bethany-Kris's Review of Her Christmas Hero
****Five "Lee" Stars****
Laurie Wilson is a widow and the mother to four children. The only good thing her deceased husband ever did for her was finally die. But that also left her to struggle to support her four children alone. She struggles and budgets, but more often than not, things come up that leave her strapped for cash and trying to find another way out. When Christmas rolls around and her previous landlord steals a check from her, leaving Laurie without money to buy groceries or presents for her children, her boss and unknowing on her part, her Christmas hero steps in to save the day.
Laurie is the kind of heroine that your heart aches for. She's a victim of domestic abuse, but she's doing absolutely everything she can to give her children a better, happier, and healthier life. Sometimes it often feels like the world is just conspiring against her in every way, and each time she turns around, something new is jumping in to knock her back down.
Ms. Matthews does an amazing job at not only making you feel for this heroine, but making you cheer her on so that she can finally get her feet on solid ground.
Leland, Laurie's boss and the brother to her friend from high school, is the kind of hero I want to see more of. He did something to help Laurie just to simply do it. He didn't do it to get her closer, and he didn't even tell her that he had been the one to do it. Not for attention, but rather, simply to be a good guy.
More heroes need to be like Leland.
This is a very short tale, about 7500 words in total, but it's well worth the read. It ends off at a sort of cliffhanger point, but I didn't mind. In fact, I look forward to getting my hands on the second part to this sweet Christmas tale.
Thank you, Susanne, for a light, fun read!
Her Christmas Hero
Bio and social media links:
by Susanne Matthews
Genre: Romance, Holiday, Contemporary
Length: Short story
Releases: Nov. 30th, 2015
Windowed mother of four Laurie Wilson, all set to make Christmas special for her children this year, gets a shock when a check that was supposed to have been destroyed is cashed , leaving her in a financial lurch just days before Christmas.
Leland Ostler packed his heart in ice years ago and goes through the Christmas season paying lip-service to the holiday. Running into one of his employees, the girl who fascinated him in high school, may change that. Will discovering Laurie’s plight be enough to allow the true meaning of Christmas and love into his life once more?
“I have to go over to Caswell’s and pick up the tablets I ordered for the kids. Since the price was so good, they’ll sell like hot cakes, and Mrs. C. promised to set four aside as long as I got in there before five today.”
“That was nice of her. You’re such a good mommy,” Cassie said. “Don’t forget to grab a sandwich or something while you’re out. You’re losing weight again. The one thing those kids of yours don’t need is a sick mother.”
“You’re preaching to the choir. I’ll be fine. Christmas this year is important. It has to be the best one ever, and you know it.”
“Frank was a jerk. I won’t speak ill of the dead, but those kids are better off without a father like that, and a man who beats on his wife, don’t even get me started.”
“He wasn’t always like that,” Laurie said, falling back into her abused wife persona and defending the man. She shook her head. No. Months of counseling had taught her not to make excuses for him. “Be nice; without Frank, I wouldn’t have those kids, and I can’t imagine life without them.”
“Fine. The sperm donor did do something right, even if it was for the wrong reasons since all he wanted to do was keep you under his thumb, but I’ll never forgive the man for treating you and those angels that way. Dying was the best thing he ever did for you guys. You’d better get going. You’ve only got an hour. I’ll cover for you if you’re a few minutes late.”
“Thanks, Cassie. You’re the best.”
Laurie hurried to the closet, took out her cornflower blue coat, slipped it on, tying the hot pink scarf around her neck, and jamming the matching cap down on her head. She rushed down the hall as quickly as the heels on her boots would allow and turned the corner, running right into a solid wall of muscle and fine wool.
“Whoa, there. Where’s the fire?” he asked, holding her upright.
“Sorry, sir,” she said, avoiding eye contact with the man a good six inches taller than her own five-foot eight inch frame. He let go of her arms where the skin burned beneath his touch even through the three layers that separated the flesh. She bent down and grabbed her purse, noting the strap had broken. Damn. Something else that would need to be replaced. Why was it she constantly ran out of money before she ran out of things to spend the money on?
She nodded and mumbled a second apology, escaping into the elevator as soon as the doors opened, making sure to keep her eyes averted. Of all the people to run into: Leland Ostler, the firm’s CEO, and Mrs. Colter, his administrative assistant. No doubt the woman would be clock watching until Laurie was behind her desk once more.
Moving as swiftly as she could along the slush- covered sidewalk, Laurie kept her head down watching for icy spots that could end up in an embarrassing spill. Cassie was right, it was much worse out here than she’d imagined. The possibility school would be over earlier than expected worried her. Mike had a key, but a ten-year-old wasn’t an adequate babysitter for his nine, eight, and six-year-old siblings. It was only for a couple of hours, but who knew how many things could go wrong in that short time period? Marcia, the neighbor’s teenage daughter, usually went into the house and stayed with the children until Laurie got home, but the teen had finished school last week and gone south with her family.
Stop borrowing trouble. It’s Christmas. The sleet will stop. Think positive.
Turning the corner, careful not to run into anyone else, she stepped into the electronics shop. The place was deserted.
“Hi,” she said, walking up to the counter, and forcing the teenaged clerk to set aside her magazine. “I’m Laurie Wilson. I have four tablets to pick up.”
Buying the android tablets for the kids was an extravagant purchase, but most of their friends had electronic toys and computers. She’d love to get them each a laptop, knowing Michael would need something better than the dinosaur PC she had at home, but this was the best she could do.
The girl returned to the counter with the four boxes in her arms. “You’re lucky you came in when you did. These have been flying off the shelves. That’ll be $695.79,” she said, keying the amount into the cash register.
Laurie slipped her bank debit card into the machine and followed the instructions.
Susanne Matthews lives in Cornwall, Ontario, Canada. A dreamer, her stories and novels, whether contemporary romance, suspense, historical, or sci-fi, always lead to a happily ever after. She loves the ins and outs of romance, and the complex journey it takes to get from the first word to the last period of a tale. As she writes, her characters take on a life of their own, leading her and her readers on intricate and rewarding journeys.
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