Reviews tagging 'Sexual content'

The Mistletoe Motive by Chloe Liese

59 reviews

nineinchnails's review

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lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0

this was really cute! i don't really gravitate towards novellas but i was trying to avoid a book slump before it came (hoping that worked) so it's what i needed today. i actively avoid holiday romances but it wasn't too obnoxious with the christmas stuff in this book. enemies/rivals to lovers would work better in a full-length book imo because there's time for a more natural development but i still enjoyed this! the characters don't have much depth and they're pretty frustrating but overall it was a fun and easy read. 

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drtx_bwt's review

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emotional lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? N/A
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0


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kelly_e's review against another edition

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funny hopeful lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

Title: The Mistletoe Motive
Author: Chloe Liese
Genre: Romance Novella
Rating: 3.75
Pub Date: December 1, 2021

T H R E E • W O R D S

Brief • Angsty • Steamy

📖 S Y N O P S I S

He loathes the holidays. She loves them. She’s full of festive cheer. He’s brimming with Bah, Humbugs. Besides unreasonably seasonable names, the only thing Jonathan Frost and Gabriella Di Natale have in common is a healthy dose of mutual contempt. Well, that and the same place of employment at the city’s most beloved independent bookstore, Bailey’s Bookshop. But when the store’s owners confess its dire financial state, Jonathan and Gabby discover another unfortunate commonality: the imminent threat of unemployment.

With the Baileys’ requests to minimize expenses, win new customers, and make record sales dancing in their heads, Jonathan and Gabby conclude—barring a financial Christmas miracle—one of them will soon be cut from the payroll. Neither are willing to step down from their position, so they strike a bargain: whoever has more sales in December gets to stay on in the new year; the loser will resign. With a lifetime's worth of festive tricks up her sleeve, Gabby should easily outsell her nemesis, except the unreadable Mr. Frost’s every move seems purely designed to throw her off her game.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, Gabby's deceptive ex won't quit pursuing her, and her anonymous online friend suggests they take a break. Worst of all, as the pressure mounts to save the bookshop and her job, Gabby meets a new, tender side of Jonathan. Is this the same man she's called her cold-hearted enemy?

Maybe he’s got a motive she just can’t figure out—or maybe Jonathan Frost isn’t as chilly as she once thought. Maybe Jonathan and Gabby already know—and love—each other in ways they never thought possible.

💭 T H O U G H T S

Chloe Liese's Bergman Brothers series has quickly become a favourite romance series of mine, so I was interested in picking up The Mistletoe Motive when I stumbled upon it at a local garage sale. Knowing it also takes place in a bookstore was the icing on the cake, and it was one of the holiday books I put on my TBR for the holiday season.

With strong You've Got Mail vibes this open door, grumpy/sunshine romance was a quick, fun holiday read. The bookstore setting was fantastic. The writing was accessible and flowed easily. Even though everything is fairly predictable, I enjoyed how Johnathan and Gabriella really opened up to one another and how they come together to save the bookstore.

Chloe Liese is known for writing romance with diverse characters, and here she offers positive, authentic representation of neurodivergence, specifically autism; asexuality, specifically demisexuality; and chronic illness, specifically Type I diabetes. She details in her author's note at the beginning that two of these are her lived experience and how she uses her own experiences to shape her characters.

Overall, The Mistletoe Motive was fun, steamy holiday romance I enjoyed. At 179 pages, this novella explores so many things, but it never felt like I needed more. It's probably not a book I'd consider re-reading, yet I definitely look forward to continuing to explore Chloe Liese work and would recommend this as a cozy holiday read.

📚 R E C O M M E N D • T O
• readers looking for a bookstore romance
• fans of enemies-to-lovers trope
• Hallmark movie enthusiasts

🔖 F A V O U R I T E • Q U O T E S

"Just because you’re loving them differently than they love doesn’t make it any less loving. My mom says there are countless kinds of love, and love enough for everyone. That love is an infinite resource whose expressions are just as innumerable." 

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lakinglaze's review

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funny hopeful lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.5

This was a really cute little Christmas novella! I love Chloe’s warm & fuzzy stories! 

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carlyjoann's review against another edition

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emotional funny lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.5


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heoleen's review against another edition

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funny lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0

Een lekker makkelijk boek om tussendoor te lezen. Het was wel erg voorspelbaar en er zaten veel clichés in. Daar ergerde ik me wel aan.

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mrsmishler's review

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emotional funny hopeful lighthearted medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

2.75


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ka_ke's review

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hopeful lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0


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amanda_reads13's review

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lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0

Gabriella works at an independent book store with her grumpy co-manager, Jonathan. They are complete opposites and do not get along at all. With the possibility shutting down, they must put aside their differences to try to save the store. 

This was a cute, fluffy, and predictable Christmas novella. 

Gabriella and Jonathan have never got along. Gabriella is sunshine to Jonathan's grumpy. Gabriella has autism and struggles to interpret people's emotions. Jonathan doesn't know and this leads to a lot of miscommunication between the two. 

Jonathan is actually very sweet. He has paid close attention to her and has picked up on many of her sensitivities (ie. Loud noises, strong smells,...). He goes out of his way to ensure that she does not have any extra stress (ie. Not telling her about a meeting 2 weeks in advancing, knowing she will worry). He very obviously has feelings for Gabriella, but she hasn't picked up on it. 

Since this is a novella, the enemies to friends to lovers trope moves very fast. Gabriella is a demisexual and only develops attraction to someone once she has formed a close emotional bond. I feel like their "bond" wasn't a strong enough workaround for this since I think there needs to be a deep sense of trust for an emotional bond. I think it would have made more sense if their "friendship" period had been a bit longer. 

I think the whole toxic ex could have been cut. It didn't really add much to the plot line. 

Tropes: opposites attract, enemies to friends to lovers, grumpy/sunshine

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readingwithmuggy's review

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4.0

I’m not a mega romance girly at heart but this one was sweet and made me swoon. 

You’ve Got Mail vibes 💌
Grumpy/sunshine ☀️ 
Autism/T1D representation 🎧
Enemies to Lovers 🥰
Slow burn 🔥

I’m not a big fan of smut when it overrides the plot and it’s just sex back to back to back. I need some plot in between. So needless to say I could’ve done without the majority of the last two chapters. But other than that it was a good read!!

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