Christmas Ghosts by Jenn Moffatt

Christmas Ghosts by Jenn Moffatt
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Length: Short story (44 pages)
Other: M/M
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Dealing with the unexpected loss of his mother isn’t how carpenter Steve Browning planned to spend his Christmas. Hoping her costume jewelry can bring some happiness to others, he takes it to the local community theater, where he runs into his first love, Troy Baxter.
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Troy’s trying to help his sister put on a gender-fluid version of A Christmas Carol, but no one on the cast or crew knows which end of a hammer to hold let alone use a power tool. Then a face from the past brings a present-day miracle… one that could lead to the happy future they both thought they gave up back in high school.
Steven is devastated after his mother’s death, but he and his brother decide the right thing to do is donate all her stuff to the small, local theatre company. Steve knows his high school boyfriend, Troy might very well be there since the theatre is owned by Troy’s twin sister, but when the two men meet up again after such a long time apart neither of them are ready for the flood of emotions and rekindled feelings that come back.

This is a lovely and somewhat sweet reunion style of short story. I enjoyed how while it was set around Christmas-time the plot mainly revolved around Steve and Troy rediscovering each other. Steve is a carpenter – and Troy’s theatre is in dire need of an upgrade and there are plenty of sets for the Christmas play that need the touch of a professional. This throws the two old friends into each other’s company a lot and it’s no small wonder that they reconnect.

While it’s clear Troy and Steve’s relationship finishes in a good and positive place I couldn’t help but feel there was a lot of potential for a longer story to continue where this left off as there were a few aspects of both Steve and his brother’s grief over their mother – and the main characters’ plans for the future – that I would have enjoyed seeing come to more fruition.

Happy and sweet, this is a lovely story about revisiting the past, dealing with the present and looking forward into the future. I enjoyed also that it wasn’t overly Christmassy – but a good, modern contemporary romance.

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