My Kind Of Christmas | Janet Dailey | Book Review

My Kind Of Christmas is the first book in The Christmas Tree Ranch series. It is not a thought provoking book but it is a good story to help get you in the holiday spirit. The main character Travis is an ex-cop who has spent time in prison for accidental manslaughter. Now he is released and has moved back to his hometown and acquired his family ranch. He does not know anything about ranching but he thinks it will be perfect for a man looking to be a recluse and avoid the public eye. Except suddenly he finds himself the owner of a dog named Bucket, two gigantic horses, a Christmas tree farm, and has his eye on the beautiful Mayor Maggie. So much for being a quiet recluse…

Alot of the reason that Travis is determined to be a reclusive is because of his childhood with an abusive and alcoholic father. The man who is his biological father is now sober, lives in town, and although Hank has tried to reach out to Travis, he wants nothing to do with him. There is so much loaded history and misunderstandings between these men. Especially when Travis and his two friends Connor and Rush open their own tree farm which impedes on Hank’s business as a Christmas tree seller. And the one who finds herself in the middle of all this is Maggie.

There is attraction between Maggie and Travis from the moment they crash into each other – literally – but they are two people from two different backgrounds so they usually do not see eye to eye. Maggie has it in her mind that one of her roles as mayor is to help keep the peace between the citizen’s. This includes Travis and Hank who she think are just being stubborn men. This angle of her character was very annoying for me. She basically continues to give ultimatum that nothing can progress between her and Travis unless he heals his wounds with Hank. It causes too much distress to have them at odds even though this situation has nothing to do with her and obviously was very distressing for Travis who actually lived through it.

Honestly, Maggie and Travis go from the attraction phase to the “love” phase way too quickly. The two barely spend any time together and suddenly they are just meant to be together. I really had a hard time believing it and wish there had been more build up for the two of them. The saving grace for this story was the setting and the secondary characters. I really liked visualizing the small town of Branding Iron and how festive it was becoming for Christmas. The Christmas tree farm was also fun to visualize as well especially with the sleigh rides and Bucket sitting in the front seat. It sounded so cute!

As My Kind Of Christmas is the first book in the series I look forward to getting to see more of Bucket and learn more about the people of Branding Iron. Maybe some of them will find their own romances. Maybe Maggie and Travis wilm grow on me too. Time will tell…

Rating: 3 Stars

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