Aaron Winters, the gorgeously handsome billionaire CEO and philanthropist has always hated Christmas; for him, the festive season holds too many tormenting memories…
Robyn Hurst is one of his many dutiful employees, but won’t let anything – or anyone – cancel Christmas for her.
A couple of weeks before Christmas, the traditional charity auctions take place; Robyn finds herself one of the unlucky ones, auctioned away for a date with the highest bidder. Just when she fears falling into the wrong hands, she’s relieved to find that a mysterious bidder has saved her. She’s even more surprised to discover that it’s none other than Aaron Winters himself!
Soon they find themselves in a most unexpected romance, as Aaron finds a woman truly in love with life, and Robyn finds her billionaire suitor to be more than just a wealthy curmudgeon; can Robyn bring him out of his shell, and teach Aaron the true joy of Christmas?
I have to say this book was a bit of a surprise, Aaron isn’t like most of the billionaires I’ve read. He’s not quite as assertive as one might expect. He dislikes Christmas, preferring to spend it on a tropical island alone. Other than the responsible CEO duty of the Christmas Party stays away from all things related to the holiday.
Robyn on the other hand is perky, a true believer in Christmas, and determined in her own way. Part of the holiday traditions at the office is to auction off of some of the management for Charity. Not like a dating thing, but to help with chores, or babysit, things like that.
Although he’s never participated before Aaron bids to win the beautiful Robyn and sets her on a series of tasks delivering holiday cheer in an elf costume.
“Ready for what?” I asked, sheer terror gripping at my heart. Was she going to let go of me?“I’m going to let go of one of your hands and turn around and skate next to you, okay?”“Sure, I’ve made one round, I’m an expert now.”
“Sarcasm,” she said. “I love it.” I loved the way her face was flushed from the cold and her blue eyes sparkled out from underneath the pink knit hat she wore.
She let go of my left hand and I watched her feet glide backwards until she was facing forward and right next to me. She made it look so easy. I couldn’t really see myself, but I was sure I made it look ridiculous. I wondered if she was reading my mind somehow because right then she said, “Stop worrying about how you look and relax. Who cares what any of these people think? Chin up, chest out, head held high, and most importantly of all, smile. Have fun!” Easy for her to say, I thought, but I tried. I forced myself to stop looking down at my feet. I stopped looking at the others as they gracefully passed by too. I looked straight ahead and gripped Robyn’s hand like a lifeline. Before I knew it, we’d gone another lap around. On the next lap, Robyn began singing along with the Christmas song playing in the background. She knew every word and she had a beautiful voice. I was enjoying the serenade so much that I hardly even registered the next lap.
By the time we were on our fourth, or maybe our fifth she said, “Are you ready to solo?” My stomach did somersaults. It was something I hadn’t felt since I was a kid. I wasn’t ready, I was scared to death. Sometimes in business when I took a big gamble it was scary, but it was a good scary. This was bone-breaking scary. I couldn’t admit that out loud though. I had my reputation. Instead, I did what I thought would please her.
“Sure, let’s give it a shot,” I told her.
“That’s the attitude I’ve been looking for. I knew it was in there somewhere,” she said with a wink. Robyn smiled and squeezed my hand and then let it go. Although we were both wearing gloves, the first thing I realized was how much colder I felt as soon as I was missing her touch. The next thing I recognized was that I hadn’t realized how much she was actually supporting me. I started slipping and sliding and my hands automatically reached out for something to hold onto. I didn’t realize it at that moment, but it was like over-correcting in a car when you went into a skid. I grabbed hold of Robyn without considering the consequences. I heard her squeal as we both went down… hard. I landed on my backside and Robyn was lying across the top of me. I was glad at least that I didn’t crush her. As much as this position would have been something I’d love in another setting, I was completely humiliated as people slid by so effortlessly while I sat on my ass on the cold ice. They seemed to all be smiling too.
Robyn was squirming, trying to untangle us and it only seemed to tangle us up further. My left leg was twisted backwards at an odd angle and I was afraid I wasn’t going to be able to stand back up. Robyn finally got her legs free and I realized I was still gripping her arm. I let that go and she was sitting on her backside facing me, and she was laughing. She was laughing so hard that she had tears in her eyes.
At last she was able to stop and with an escaped tear rolling down her cheek, she said, “See there, that wasn’t so bad now, was it?” Maybe not, but now I was on my ass on the ice and I had no idea how to stand up.
“I suppose the falling wasn’t so bad, but now how do I get back up?” I asked her.
“Watch,” she said. She got up on her knees and put one skate underneath her. Using her hands she pushed herself up in what seemed to be one effortless motion. She did make it look easy, although I wasn’t going to be fooled into believing it was going to be that easy for me, I felt a little better. “Now you try it,” she said.
I got up on my knees… so far so good. Then I put my hands down on the ice and put one skate underneath me and then… I fell forward, flat on my face.
“Oh my gosh! Aaron! I’m sorry! Are you okay?” Robyn was suddenly down on the ice next to me. I don’t know what happened then. It must have been breathing in her enthusiasm all morning, but the thought of what I had to look like, splayed out on the ice suddenly struck me as funny. I started laughing and I couldn’t stop. “Oh thank goodness, you’re okay!” Robyn said. I reached up and playfully pulled her down on top of me and once again we were both splayed out on the ice. She was laughing too now and it suddenly occurred to me that we were going to have to get back up and that made me want to laugh even more. It was like Robyn had infected me with her magic and I had to admit that it felt really good.
Rayner, Holly. The Billionaire’s First Christmas – Contemporary Romance (A Winters Love Book 1) (Kindle Locations 819-860). UNKNOWN. Kindle Edition.
I found myself laughing with them throughout the many Christmasy things Robyn puts Aaron through.
Even as love blossoms, Aaron questions himself and his judgement.
I laughed and teared up a bit as this fun Christmas read progresses from Scrooge to a holiday of love.
I only had a problem with a prank Robyn played as I think anyone would have been far more angry than amused.
4 Contented Purrs for Holly!
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Holly Rayner is the bestselling romance author of ‘The Billionaire’s First Christmas, and is known for her engrossing romances with red hot, strong and assertive alpha males you’ll fall in love with and the strong and daring women who tempt them…If you’re a fan of gripping, sweet romance, follow Holly Rayner today!