THE SNOW BRIDE

Debbie Macomber, Author . Mira $14.95 (240p) ISBN 978-1-55166-736-2

Prolific Macomber puts a new twist on the smalltown romance with this lightweight Christmas caper, which takes place in the one-woman town of Snowbound, Alaska. Despite having a population of only seven, Snowbound has a cafe, a grocery, an airstrip and, as 31-year-old Los Angeles native Jenna Campbell soon learns, several bighearted bachelors. Having spent six years mooning after her workaholic boss, Brad Fulton, who barely knows she's alive, executive assistant Jenna is now ready to seek snowier pastures. She quits her job and heads to Beesley, Ala., to meet Dalton Gray, a poetic outdoorsman who has been corresponding with her via e-mail. But when Dalton doesn't arrive at the airport to greet her, she hires Reid Jamison, her annoying seatmate, to fly her to Beesley. Reid knows Dalton and has good reason to despise him, so he changes directions and whisks Jenna away to his home in Snowbound. Meanwhile, Brad decides he can't function without Jenna and vows to do anything (even offer marriage) to get her back, and Dalton frantically searches for her in the local bars. Add Jenna's flighty, five-times-married-and-divorced mother, Chloe, to the mix, and the madcap race is on for who will win Jenna's heart. Macomber's characters never evolve beyond their stock roles, and the romance between Reid and the exasperatingly prissy Jenna is superficial. Dialogue-heavy and virtually devoid of the kind of descriptive details that would wrap readers up in the book's snowy setting, this tall tale has all the intensity and substance of a fall flurry. Still, it's a fast, frothy fantasy for those looking to add some romance to their holidays. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 09/29/2003
Release date: 10/01/2003
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