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on 24 December 2014
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This short story is set around Christmas time and is about Ella who's planning to spend Christmas on her own due to losing her parents earlier in the year. Since losing her parents she has tried to completely change her life, but finds that maybe she has stopped living her life in the process. Ella lives and works with her two best friends, Amy, who eats raw bread instead of toast for breakfast and Lee, who looks slightly like Dermot O'Leary (mmmmmmm). Then Joe, the nephew of Ella's boss Patrick, comes along with a bump and turns Ella's world upside down and put the steam back into steamed Christmas Puddings!

This is an absolutely brilliant, romantic, adult fiction love story filled with friendship, romance, moving on and lots of Christmassy feelings. The opening of this story grabbed my attention from the offset with a great reference to Dirty Dancing and great Christmas songs and Christmas film references, snow and a touching snowball fight that is sure to melt anyone's heart.

I loved literally all of the characters and they were all individual and unique in their own ways which for me made me love the story even more. They were all just so real and likeable that it made it impossible for me not to grin whilst reading. Normally when I read a short story it always feels unfinished in some way but with this book yes I could have kept on reading, but the story pulls you in that much that you do not even realise or remember that it's a short story. The humour was absolutely spot on for me as well giving me more than a couple of good chuckles in the mix.

I cannot not talk about this novella without talking about a new discovery that I have never heard of before! MOVIEOKE! Basically the characters in the book work for a company that runs Movieoke nights where by you pick a scene from a film and act it out. So basically Karaoke but acting! I am fully intrigued! I HAVE to try this someday!

Esme Taylor is a pen name for Keris Stainton's adult fiction and is such super fabulous author!

All I Want For Christmas is most defiantly for older readers and I know that there is another Esme Taylor short called Baby One More Time which I am going to read around Valentines Day. I love the way Keris writes as she completely pulls you in as a reader and creates such fab, realistic characters and great stories.

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on 18 February 2014
I have to say before reading this book, I love the whole concept behind Unlocked Books from Hot Key Books. All the books in this imprint will be digitally printed for now, but I am guessing that at a later stage the books will be bound by a theme and published in paper back format in the future, though don’t quote me on that. Each quarter they will be publishing another set of books which will deal with different genres. I am already hooked on the New Adult ones.

I love Christmas books! Christmas itself – not so much. As it tends to be one of the busiest and most stressful times of the year, what more could I want but a little nugget of Christmas romance, easily readable in an evening, when time tends to be short.

This book is written under a pseudonym for reasons which I can’t work out as everyone knows that Keris Stainton wrote it. I am presuming it is because of her YA books but as this is the next step up from YA, I don’t actually get it. However, I do love the name – Esme Taylor!!

Ella and Joe are a great couple of characters. Ella has had a hard year and she is struggling to get past the things that have happened. Joe comes along and quickly becomes the antidote to her state of mind, quickly wheedling his way into her feelings. They are exact opposites of each other, yet attractions draws them together to create a promising future.

I loved Movieoke!!! I definitely want to find somewhere to pretend I’m in scenes of my favourite films.

There are some sexual scenes in this book, so don’t go downloading it for your twelve year old daughter as a little extra present. I would imagine it would appeal from 14 years up, even with the mild sex scenes.

There is a lovely Christmas feel to this book and I do think it blends romance, Christmas and sexual content really well. If you want just a slice of Christmas, then this is the book for you.
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on 10 May 2014
All I Want for Christmas began with a Dirty Dancing reference so really I was sold from the very beginning! My first taste of HotKey Unlocked went down a treat.

In a rather short number of pages I really became involved with Ella and I completely understood what she was feeling, a little too acutely sometimes. Then again, it was a really nice undertone to Ella’s burgeoning relationship with Joe which was fun and sexy, but not off-puttingly graphic. Go Esme!
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on 3 November 2013
I really enjoyed this, just the right mix of sexy and romantic and the characters were very realistic and likeable.
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on 18 November 2013
This was so much fun to read. The chemistry between Ella and Joe was fabulous and very real, the banter among all the characters was great, and while I wished the ending had been expanded a bit, I enjoyed the whole piece so much. Really, really sweet and fun.
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Cute story. Engaging characters. The story shows the paths people take can be unexpected but still lead to where you are supposed to be and who you should be with. Nothing too explicit, probably suitable for library shelves if restricted to 15+ or parental consent.
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on 3 November 2013
A Christmas treat - a sexy romance which is pitched perfectly and leaves you wanting more. Esme Taylor is great at creating realistic characters and making you care about them. I've love to read more about the people she creates for this novella.
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on 4 November 2013
A good, fun read to help get you in the Christmas spirit with lots of sexytimes! Loved the characters - a great read for a cold, wintery afternoon.
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