Take a break and enjoy.
The evenings are getting longer, the nights colder, and the holiday season is just around the corner. Between shopping and preparing for Christmas, it was time for a break, so I decided to take a look at this wonderful collection of brilliant stories from Ylva Publishing.
The anthology contains twelve stories by established writers such as Caren J. Werlinger or Lois Cloarec Hart. But I was also pleasantly surprised to discover some new talents I didn’t know before.
My choice for third best out of many favorite stories in this book is “Red Suits and Second Chances” by Eve Francis. The main character, Gina, dreads the holiday season. Years before, when she wasn’t out as a trans woman, she always had to play Santa Claus at her office’s holiday party. Now her life is considerably different, and her only wish is to get through the holidays without revisiting her past ghosts. But sometimes the good ones are just around the corner, and Felicia, a helpful coworker, has a plan that involves some rethinking of the Christmas spirit and what else to do with red fabric.
To choose between second and first place of all these romantic holiday moments was rather difficult. But I finally chose “Snow, With a Chance of Love” by B.A. Caldwell as my personal second-place winner: Britt and Anne are the two main characters, and George, a dachshund-terrier-mutt, also plays an important role in this winter romantic fairytale. From the moment I started to read the story, Britt and Anne managed to brighten my mood. They brought the typical holiday story tropes: winter, snow, evolving and delicate feelings, hesitation, but at the end, there is a charming affection between two lovable women.
A good short story has only a few pages to wrap you around its finger. Not every story manages this, but in Do You Feel What I Feel – A Holiday Anthology, there are several stories of love and hope, past and present. The message of the book as a whole is: it is never too late. Don’t be afraid to take a chance, you never know what will happen.
So it was only natural that “More Than a Holiday Romance” by Chris Zett made it to my favorite story in this anthology. Carol and Laura, two women who have known each other for twelve years, start a new journey and get reacquainted all over again. At the end, there promises to be a happy ending if Carol and Laura are brave enough to approach each other.
Do You Feel What I Feel – A Holiday Anthology has several other great stories, from a tattoo artist hiding an origami angel in her lover’s desk to a seventy-year-old woman hesitating to accompany her partner to a family celebration on the first night of Hanukkah. The ensemble in this anthology is fairly matched, and it is a pleasant and enjoyable excursion into the variety of lesbian fiction.
And the best is: all profits of this anthology will be donated to YouthCare, a shelter for LGBT homeless youth in Seattle in the United States, and to Angalia, a group giving shelter and food to refugees in Greece. So you can pair charity with great quality fiction. Buy this one guilt-free, and take some time for romance this holiday season.