Spreading Christmas Cheer

By Eliza Knight

Happy December! It’s that time of year when you can’t walk into a store without the scent of spicy cinnamon assailing your senses or vibrant decorations grabbing your attention.
I love December for so many reasons! I love the smell of Christmas and pine trees. I love the movies, the music, and cuddling under blankets. I love wishing it would snow and then lighting a fire, and the enchanting scent of wood burning. I like to shop for new decorations (I usually get one new decoration a year!). I like to turn on the candles in the windows and stand outside to look at how magical a lighted candle makes my house look.
I don’t so much enjoy stringing lights around trees and bushes… I let Mr. Knight take care of that! But I do love decorating our Christmas tree and reminiscing about each and every ornament.
Cookie baking! I love to come up with the various recipes I’m going to use and then putting them together. The sugary, succulent scent of cookies baking is swoonworthy.
But my absolute favorite thing to do around the holidays is spread happiness. I like to do it through giving. Giving readers a wonderful story to read. Giving someone who may be down on their luck a lift,  like paying for the person behind me at Starbucks, helping a needy family, donating time, surprising someone with something they’ve been wanting for a long time. I like to teach my children about the holidays and how it’s not about what you get, but how you make someone else’s day a little brighter. Seeing a smile on their face, is a gift in itself.
What is your favorite part of the holiday season? Decorating? Baking cookies? Buying presents? Volunteering your time?

I’m happy to give away one e-book copy of A KILTED CHRISTMAS WISH!
Leave a comment for your chance to win!

A KILTED CHRISTMAS WISH is a sexy, contemporary novella of about 20,000 words.

Down on her luck with men, Darla Strider wonders if she’ll ever meet her own kilted hero. Considering she lives in present day New York City, the likelihood of that happening is nil. She’s certain only a Christmas wish could make her dreams come true. Until the day Aaron Sutherland walks into her café, and changes her whole world.

Leaving his pain in Scotland for life in the States, the last thing Aaron has in mind is hooking up with a city girl. But one look at Darla and she’s got him singing All I Want for Christmas is You.

A short excerpt…
Chapter One
New York City

Highlanders. Oh, she wished.
Darla Strider, hopeless romantic and cynical love hater, tossed the Scottish romance novel she’d been reading aside. Highlander’s Reward… Ultra alpha hero, fiercely loyal, powerful, hot body, good in bed, not to mention his kilt… When was she going to get her reward? The Scottish hero from the novel certainly wasn’t going to leap from the pages, long sexy hair flowing, sword glinting, eyes filled with desire and ask her out to dinner followed by mind-blowing sex—except in her fantasies. And in her fantasies, she would say, yes, a thousand times yes, throwing herself into his waiting, muscular arms.
Leaning an elbow on the counter of her gourmet deli and resting her chin in her hand, she gazed out the paned glass onto the busy, holiday-adorned Manhattan street. Any minute the lunchtime rush would begin. Thank goodness her chef was in today. With Amanda, her hostess/waitress, out sick, the counter was going to get crazy. Reading time was over for the next few hours. What did it matter, anyway? She was beginning to be overly bitter about romance and a reminder of that was the last thing she needed.
One miserable, failed date after another. A couple of meaningless relationships and a series of messy nights bumping uglies. Romance, for Darla, was dead.
What she wouldn’t give to have a Highlander walk through her door that very moment. At least a free year’s supply of her prized veggie and goat cheese panini. To hear his brogue stroke her like a caress while he told her how beautiful he thought she was. She smirked. For that, she’d throw in a daily glass of sangria.
Never going to happen.
She glanced over at the miniature Christmas tree tucked into the corner near the window. Stockings hung from its branches, all in the name of holiday cheer. A little bronzed Santa sat nestled in the branches, surrounded by twinkling white lights and silver tinsel.
“Santa,” she murmured. “Please bring me one of these Highland heroes for Christmas.”
Oh, God, now she was resorting to talking to inanimate objects. Hopeless.
The bell over the door dinged. Swiping her hands on her snowman-covered apron as she stood straight and plastered a smile on her face, Darla resisted the urge to gasp at the gorgeous man who walked through the entrance. Dressed in a dazzling fitted, charcoal-gray suit, with a light blue dress shirt and shiny black tie, he looked like he’d just walked off a billboard titled, Every Woman’s Dream. Dark hair, slightly on the longish side, clean shaven, chiseled features—and those eyes. Gray as storm clouds and just as unpredictable.
Darla swallowed her shock and cocked her head slightly. “Welcome to City Café,” she said, silently cursing the slight shake in her voice. She clutched her fingers together behind her back, then quickly brought them around front when she realized she’d thrust her breasts forward, too.
A delicious grin curled his lips and his eyes raked over her making Darla wish she’d chosen her good jeans today. The ones that made her butt look bootylicious instead of I-eat-too-much-chocolicious.
“Thanks,” he said.
Darla did a double-take, her mouth falling open at least an inch. She definitely detected some sort of accent. Her heart sped up and she gave a furtive glance at Santa. Sounded Scottish, but it was hard to decipher from one syllable. There was no way… She was delusional, that was all.
“Would you like to eat in or carryout?” she managed.
He studied her for a few skips of her heartbeat. There was a wicked glint in his eyes. The kind that would normally make her melt. Okay, fine. She admitted it, the way he was looking at her, she was bound to go boneless if he didn’t look away.
“I’d like a table,” he said.
Holy, *******, Santa Claus!
The man spoke with the most discernible Scottish brogue. Knees going weak, Darla gripped the counter to hold herself up. She blinked, staring at him and then back at her Christmas tree. Was this a joke? No. Couldn’t be. Just a coincidence. A huge coincidence. No stars-aligning, tragic romance bull, just chance.
“Is that all right?” he asked, staring around the café when she didn’t respond.
The door opened, bell dinging, as a group of three walked in, dusting snow off their sleeves. The noise pulled her out of her trance, and Darla jerked into motion, grabbing a menu.
“Yes, yes, of course.” She skidded around the side of the counter and took him to the table closest to her—selfish really. She wanted the ability to stare at him while she worked. Ugh. Maybe she should convince him to take his order to go?

Eliza Knight is the multi-published, award-winning, best-selling author of sizzling romance and erotic romance. While not reading, writing or researching for her latest book, she chases after her three children. In her spare time (if there is such a thing…) she likes daydreaming, wine-tasting, traveling, hiking, staring at the stars, watching movies, shopping and visiting with family and friends. She lives atop a small mountain, and enjoys cold winter nights when she can curl up in front of a roaring fire with her own knight in shining armor. Visit Eliza at www.elizaknight.com  or her historical blog History Undressed: www.historyundressed.com. Follow her on Twitter @ElizaKnight or friend her on Facebook: www.facebook.com/elizaknightauthor


Ana Morgan said...

Eliza, your stories are always sexy and satisfying.

Eliza Knight said...

Thanks, Ana!!

ann alba said...

Eliza you are a new to me author. I thought I knew everyone who wrote about My Sexy Highlanders...
Have a good one Ann/alba.