Last Blue Christmas, by Rose Prendeville was featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight with R&R Tours. Included in the promo material was a copy of the book. And, honestly, I couldn’t remember if I promised just a spotlight or a book review. But as I happen to be doing a Christmas Reading Challenge at the moment, I decided I didn’t care and gave it a read either way.
The only case they haven’t cracked is how to be together.
Not on Officer Maggie Kyle’s Christmas bingo card:
• A homemade bomb in a bus station locker.
• A child, the prime suspect in the bombing.
• Her partner of ten years abandoning her to solve the case on her own.
Max St. James might be the worst cop in the world—or at least in Toronto:
• He fell in love with his partner.
• He’s the reason she never became a detective.
• He doesn’t much care who planted the bomb.
The IED’s blast ignites years of tension, sending Maggie and Max careening in opposite directions—but opposites still attract.
Can they find a way to come together to solve the case before another bomb goes off?
And will it mean another ten years sacrificing the future they want for the partnership they already have?
I enjoyed this a lot. As I said, I read it as part of a Christmas Reading Challenge. But I’d call it more a book set during Christmastime than an actual Christmas book. I still enjoyed it a lot though.
I thought the characters felt very real and were quite likeable. I appreciated the diversity of the cast and some of the subtly portrayed social flaws. Let them be seen for what they are; all the better if an author can do so without feeling like they’re giving a social justice lecture. Plus, the writing is clean and easily readable.
I did think that, as much as I like the children (and they were well written), they were surely too well behaved and angelic for two little boys who had been traumatized by their last few years of life. Additionally, I found the number of times the narrative was disrupted by the two main characters’ internal thoughts of the other…well, disruptive. There were just too many of them, certainly more than needed to make the point. Luckily this tapered of by the half-way mark.
On a side note—not really related to a review but related to me a reader—as someone who worked in Child and Family Services (what the book calls Child Aid) let me tell you that it is not AT ALL appreciated to purposefully wait until after-hours to call-in a child in need, if you’ve been holding that child since morning or early afternoon, not by the social worker or the eventual foster parent. Nope, not at all appreciated. LOL. But I do also 100% sympathize with Max’s concerns in calling.
All in all, I was impressed and will happily read another Prendeville book.
There also happens to be a giveaway running. For your chance to win a $50 Amazon e-Gift Card, click the link below!
Come back tomorrow. I’ll be reviewing Christmas Lites II, a Christmas short story collection edited by Amy Eye.