O'Neil Brothers #3
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
This winter, ex-skiing champion, reformed heartbreaker and single dad Tyler O'Neil has only one mission—making sure his daughter, Jess, has the best Christmas ever. The fact that his best friend, Brenna, is also temporarily moving into his chalet at the overbooked Snow Crystal resort is a delicious distraction he's simply going to have to ignore. Theirs is the one relationship he's never ruined, and he's not about to start now.
Ski pro Brenna Daniels knows all about the perils of unrequited love—she's been in love with Tyler for years. But living with him is absolute torture…how can she concentrate on being his friend when he's sleeping in the room next door? Then when Tyler kisses Brenna, suddenly the relationship she's always dreamed of feels so close she could almost touch it. Could this be the Christmas her dreams of a happy-ever-after finally come true?
Maybe This Christmas gives us a delightful best friends to lovers romance, one rippling with all the delicious tension that stems from a relationship in transition, and we can’t help but flip the pages at record speed to see how long it takes buried feelings to come bubbling to the surface in all their exhilarating glory.
Brenna is someone who kicks our protective instincts into high gear from the first page, the fact that she’s been completely in love with Tyler O’Neil her entire life but has found herself relegated inescapably to the best friend role making our hearts hurt instantly. She’s in no way maudlin about her predicament however, instead she’s largely come to terms with the firm boundaries of their friendship, but like anyone who’s experienced unrequited love, hope springs eternal. It’s easy to root for her chapter after chapter, hoping she finally works up the nerve to tell him how she feels but of course completely understanding when her fear of losing him altogether keeps her silent.
The tension between them is so thick we practically have trouble breathing as we read, the air heavy with all the words that continue to go unspoken yet charged with possibility as things ever-so slowly start to change. Even though we’re well aware this is a romance and we’re therefore pretty much guaranteed a happily-ever-after, Ms. Morgan does a beautiful job of making us question whether or not such a thing is actually possible for these two time and again.
We’re of course left with a smile on our faces though, infused with the warmth that comes from vicariously experiencing a woman get the one thing she’s always wanted but never dreamed she’d actually have.