Guiding the Grouch

Guiding the Grouch

He’s a billionaire set on escaping the holidays

and his demanding family. 

She’s a single mom with a sunny smile

who keeps her heart safely hidden.

When she makes him her personal Christmas project, what could possibly go wrong?

 Gabe Gatlin would do anything to evade the obligatory family holiday hobnobbing that is nothing more than one horrible business event after another, all wrapped up with a gaudy Christmas ribbon. Then the opportunity arises to explore a property in the small town of Summer Creek, Oregon, and gives him the idea to run away for the holidays. This year, he’s skipping Christmas. All he has to do is hide out until January in the quirky little town where the residents have dubbed him Grinchy Gabe. But when a delightful woman starts making his sleigh bells jingle, he might find it impossible to avoid losing his three-sizes-too-small heart.

 Single mom and waitress, Dani Latham, has two priorities: give her son the stable life she never had, and spread joy to her friends and neighbors in Summer Creek. When a stranger with a grinchy attitude sits at her table, she makes it her personal mission to make him smile. As she guides him into a flurry of Christmas festivities, she starts to wonder if this grounch’s heart will ever return to normal size. And even worse. . . if it does, who is going to save hers from breaking when he leaves?

 Will a little Christmas magic and wonder bring these two lonesome people together?

Discover the joys of the season mixed with humor, holiday fun, and moments that tug at your heartstrings in this sweet contemporary Christmas romance.

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When the cowboy wearing a black western hat and boots turned to look at her, Dani caught her breath. It was none other than Mr. Grinch.

“Fancy meeting you here,” she said, relieved he was still in town, and plagued by anxiety that she hadn’t imagined how good-looking he’d appeared last night.

“Out doing a little shopping?” he asked, looking over her full cart. She leaned forward, seeing he had everything from cleaning supplies and laundry soap to frozen dinners as well as a coffee maker and the biggest canister of ground coffee the store carried.

“Looks like you’re stocking up. I take it you are a coffee drinker.” Dani had hated the taste of coffee since the first day she woke up with morning sickness when she was expecting Seth. The smell didn’t bother her, but one taste was all it took for her gag reflexes to kick in.

Mr. Grinch just shrugged, hurriedly placed the full bags of his purchases in his cart, and took cash from a leather wallet to pay his bill.

Dani was surprised to see him pay in cash, since most people prefer plastic. For her, paying cash for everything meant she only bought what she could afford. Sometimes it was tempting to whip out her emergency credit card and use it to buy something for Seth, but she hadn’t yet. If she’d taught her son nothing else, he’d learned to be careful with his money.

“You working tonight?” Mr. Grinch asked as Dani placed bread, milk, cheese, eggs, and a large package of ground beef on the conveyor.

“Yep. I’ll be there. You planning to come in again?”

Mr. Grinch shrugged a second time as he returned his wallet to the back pocket of his jeans. She wondered if they’d fit him as well as she imagined. Currently, his coat hit mid-thigh and hindered her view.

Shamed by the direction her thoughts took, Dani felt heat suffuse her cheeks and she ducked her head as she took lettuce, tomatoes, bananas, and oranges out of the cart.

“Maybe. Thanks for last night, Miss …?”

“Latham. Dani Latham,” she said, holding her hand out toward him. “Call me Dani.”

“Dani. I’m Gabe.”

“Gabe. Like Gabriel, the angel?”

He smirked. “There’s not a whole lot angelic about me, Dani.” He released the hand she’d been acutely aware of him still holding and nudged his cart forward.

Skin tingling from the contact with his, Dani tamped down the urge to wipe it along the side of her jeans.

Act like a grownup, you ninny, she silently chided herself, then smiled at Gabe. “I’ll keep an eye out for you, Mr. Grinch.”

He scowled but tipped his hat. She caught the hint of a wink as he turned and pushed his cart outside.

So much for acting grownup. She felt more like a thirteen-year-old with her first crush.

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