Winter Blogfest: Sadira Stone

This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win a digital copy of Christmas Rekindled.

The Time Between the Years: Reflections, Predictions, and Lucky Pigs! by Sadira Stone

For those who celebrate, I hope you had a splendid Christmas. Time to take a deep breath and enjoy a moment of quiet before the glitz and clamor of New Year’s Eve.

Though American by birth, I spent thirty years in Germany, where this period is called die Zeit zwischen den Jahren, or “the time between the years,” that quiet period between Christmas and New Year’s when we reflect on the past year while planning our goals for the next.

Why “between the years?” Attached to their old celebrations, Europeans took many years to accept a new start date for the year when they switched to the Gregorian calendar.

Fun fact: This idea of a transitional time between the old year and the new one also exists in the Jewish tradition and even in Ancient Egypt, as this time marked the Nile’s annual flood, more or less.

Nowadays, the time between Christmas and New Year’s Eve (Silvester in Germany, for the Saint’s Day that falls on December 31st) is associated with predictions and good luck for the coming year. We’d buy lead-pouring kits (Bleigießen), where you melt and pour a glop of molten lead into water, then interpret the resulting shape to predict what the new year has in store.

In Austria and Southern Germany, this time of year brings noisy parades of scary, costumed figures who drive away evil spirits. That’s why we bang pots and shoot off fireworks on NY Eve—gotta scare away any demons who might pollute the new year.

At midnight on New Year’s Eve/Silverster, the whole neighborhood moves outside at midnight to drink champagne, holler, shoot off bottle rockets, and raise a ruckus. Prost Neu Jahr!

Other German superstition: Don’t hang laundry out to dry during this time or wandering spirits might get caught in your sheets and wreak their revenge on the household. Also, for good luck eat lentil soup, sauerkraut, and fried carp during this time. People give gifts of Glücksbringer, lucky charms like chimney sweeps, ladybugs, lucky pigs, four-leaf clovers, and lucky pennies (1 Euro cent).

So if you want to celebrate the German way, give your friends a chocolate pig or ladybug and wish them “einen guten Rutsch”—a good slide (into the new year.)

And here’s my all-time favorite Germany New Year’s tradition—Germans love to watch a 1963 British comedy short called Dinner for One, with Freddie Finton and May Ward. It’s just 18 minutes long. Watch it—you won’t be sorry!

Bartender River Lundqvist has a damn good reason for hating Christmas. Bangers Tavern is the perfect place to lay low over the holidays—until Charlie walks in. His first encounter with the saucy server nine years ago was utter humiliation. Her reappearance stirs up powerful desires and hopes for a new start. But the timing is all wrong.

Back in Tacoma to care for her estranged dad over the holidays, freelance web designer Charlie Khoury braces herself for the suckiest Christmas ever. A temporary job at Bangers Tavern gives her a chance to escape Dad’s criticism and blow off some steam. But why does the hunky bartender seem to hate her?

A pretend girlfriend is just what River needs to keep his family off his back—until a kiss under the mistletoe flares hot enough to melt the North Pole. When greedy developers threaten Bangers Tavern, River and Charlie must team up to save it. Their sizzling chemistry feels like the real thing—but everyone knows rebound relationships don’t last.

Come to Bangers Tavern for an enemies-to-lovers tale of reconciliation, found family, holiday cocktails, and the steamiest Christmas miracle ever.

Award-winning contemporary romance author Sadira Stone spins steamy, smoochy tales set in small businesses—a quirky bookstore, a neighborhood bar, a vintage boutique… Her stories highlight found family, friendship, and the sizzling chemistry that pulls unlikely partners together. When she emerges from her writing cave in Las Vegas, Nevada (which she seldom does), she can be found in belly dance class, or strumming her ukulele, perhaps exploring the West with her charming husband, or cooking up a storm, and always gobbling all the romance books. For a guaranteed HEA (and no cliffhangers!) visit Sadira at

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Buy the book at Books2Read.


  1. It was so interesting to learn about German customs for this time of the year. I’d never heard about any of them before.

  2. interesting info

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