Monday, November 27, 2017

Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful by Susan May Warren

Oh the Weather Outside is Frightful by Susan May Warren

This novella is part of Susan May Warren’s Montana Fire series.

Let’s begin with the summary:

She kept him alive in his darkest hour…

CJ St. John never dreamed his epic summer as a smokejumper would end with a harrowing plane crash—one that crushed his pelvis and rendered him nearly an invalid. He wouldn’t have made it through the dark night of pain and danger without brave fellow smokejumper Hannah Butcher. In fact, if he were to admit it, he probably fell in love with her that night.

He gave her the courage to reach for her dreams…

Hannah Butcher had dreamed of being a smokejumper for years—but dreaming and doing are vastly different. During rookie camp, she would have given up if it hadn’t been for CJ St. John urging her on. She probably fell in love with him then—but especially when he held her hand and kept her calm during their terrifying survival.

A winter storm awakens their memories—and fears…

When Hannah discovers that CJ plans on skipping out on their mutual friends’ wedding, she knows he’s been lying to her about his recovery—and determines to give him the same stubborn encouragement he’s given her by forcing him to attend. But when a blizzard detours them, and worse, they’re run off the road, they’ll have to face their darkest fears to survive. A Christmas story about the miracles that happen when the weather outside becomes frightful.

And now, my review:

No matter which SMW book I pick up, full length or novella, I’m almost always hooked through the whole story. I love her characters and plots. The character arcs are satisfying.

CJ is stuck in his pain and his fears of what the future may bring, given his new condition. He’s closed off due to those fears. Hannah is very brave, but doesn’t see herself that way. Part of her journey is learning to see herself as the competent medical professional she is. But first, she'll be tested.

One of the things about this author’s writing that jars me as I’m reading is the POV issue of the point-of-view characters using their parents’ real names, rather than Mom, Dad, etc. She writes this way consistently, so I’m sure it’s a purposeful choice, but it’s jarring because it isn’t true to POV. (The characters don’t call them by their first names in dialog.)

I liked how Susie used her son’s name as one of the smokejumper’s names in this series.

Candy Cane Kisses anthology

This story was part of an anthology called Candy Cane Kisses from 2016, but you can buy this novella separately now, plus it is an extended version (longer than the one in Candy Cane Kisses). I read the first version.

As someone who tries to read all of Susan’s books, and for the sake of her series, I recommend reading this novella in the smokejumper (Montana Fire) series. That way you won’t miss the romance of these characters.

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