cover image The Christmas Catch

The Christmas Catch

Toni Shiloh. Bethany House, $15.99 trade paper (224p) ISBN 978-0-76424-469-8

Shiloh (The Love Script) scores with this cheery, holiday-themed contemporary. Three years after moving back to her hometown of Peachwood Bay, Ga., single mom Bebe Gordon is still reeling from her divorce and dreading another Christmas season spent solo. Things start looking up when she runs into her high school boyfriend, Jay Walker, who left her to chase a career in the NFL and is back in town recovering from a knee injury. The two join the Christmas Ball planning committee at the local church and start spending time together. As sparks fly, Jay aims to find his way back into Bebe’s good graces, setting up extravagant dates for the two of them and easily winning over her flag football–obsessed seven-year-old daughter. While Bebe can forgive Jay, she’s not so sure she can forget, especially since her ex-husband robbed her of her faith in men—and, she fears, of her belief that she deserves happiness. Can Bebe trust God enough to let her guard down and start over? Resilient Bebe makes for an irresistible heroine, and the mix of flirty banter and earnest romance lends her relationship with Jay the right balance of sweetness and depth. Readers will have no problem rooting for these two to find their happily ever after. (Sept.)