by Michelle Pennington
Published October 26th 2011
Christmas is only days away when Ashley Wright leaves Utah and college life behind with nothing to show for the last four years but a bachelor’s degree. Her hopes of finding love with a good Mormon boy have eluded her. She believes that a family Christmas at home will lift her spirits and maybe even help her forget the man her heart yearns for. But life has other plans, and soon her lonely heart will be set … Aglow.
Aglow is a sweet Christmas book that left me warm inside when I was done. Part of the reason I loved it so much was because Ashley’s family reminded me so much of my college boyfriend’s family in that they are tight knit, welcoming and traditional. Both of the main characters were perfectly believable and likable, their chemistry building at just the right pace. There were a few times the writing seemed bogged down by every day details and some small typos, but I admire Michelle for branching out on her own to self-publish.
Overall, Aglow is the best Christmas story I’ve read this year. Michelle Pennington knows how to write just the right amount of romance and an underlying theme of the true meaning of Christmas. Aglow is a clean read I would highly recommend to everyone.
Michelle is with us today to share a guest post. Here’s what she has to say about her debut novel…
“Aglow began in my younger years when I was still waiting for the magic of romantic love to come my way. Christmas was my favorite time of year and romance my favorite genre. Both are full of sweetness, and I heartily believe that the two should go together as often as possible. I wrote Aglow as a Christmas gift for my mom and younger sisters who liked it a lot, mostly I think because they love me and romance. When I began to rewrite it with the purpose of publishing it, I realized that it had a long way to go. Throughout the various versions of it, it has moved up and down in its sweetness levels. Hopefully, it’s hit a good middle ground, but I wish you would read it and let me know where you think it hits on the Sweet Meter.
The Sweet Meter
1) Not sweet enough. Dump some more sugar in, like my husband does when making kool-aid. Needs more cuddling, kissing, cookies, and kittens.
2) Sweeter, but still a little bland. This may require chocolate to fix. In the absence of good chocolate, maybe some eye-gazing and fluttering hearts will do the trick.
3) Perfectly Sweet. Just the right balance of romance and humor. All the flirting and breath-stealing, rapturous kisses anyone could want with a nice touch of humor to even it out
4) Um, Get me some Milk or a bag of salty chips! Sugar is a good thing, but let’s be careful now. Does she have to quiver and nearly swoon every time their eyes meet?
5) Sugar Overload! Diabetic coma coming on. Conflict…Who needs it? Plot…Who cares? As long as there’s smooching and vows of everlasting love on every other page, with every romantic cliché thrown in for good measure, who needs to have anything interesting to read?
Thanks so much to Michelle for visiting us today! Check her out online at facebook/ her blog/ twitter/Amazon/ Barnes and Noble
About the Author: Michelle Pennington has a BA in Liberal Arts from the University of Arkansas in Little Rock. To attain this degree, she studied Literature, Rhetoric, History, and Art. She married her sweetheart, Ethan, while still in college and developed a new penchant for skipping class to spend more time with him. Despite this distraction, she still managed to graduate Magna Cum-Laude. Her love for the written word began at a young age. At four years old, she followed her mother around all day asking how to spell things. Her teen years were spent hiding in trees, on rooftops, and anywhere she could escape her chores for a while to read. Despite this aggravating behavior, her parents always encouraged her love of literature and her dream to write. Michelle is a hopeless romantic and an insatiable people watcher.Currently she resides in Arkansas and is a stay-at-home mom with three children who are at once adorable and exasperating. In the midst of the domestic whirlwind that is her life, she enjoys crafting, cooking, art, and reading. Due to the rise of ebook publishing, she has decided that the time is right for her to embark on this long awaited journey to become an author. She hopes that her readers will come away from her books feeling uplifted and refreshed from the stresses of their own lives.Aglow is her debut novel, but there is an endless supply of stories constantly playing in her mind, waiting for her to breathe life into them and set them free.
The Giveaway: Fire and Ice is giving away both a paperback and ebook copy of Aglow to our readers. Two winners. To enter, click here and fill out the form.