If you’re looking for a fun holiday read, this is a FREE Kindle title!
TITLE: Merry Inkmas
AUTHOR: Talia Hibbert
RELEASED: December 1st, 2018
AGE RANGE: Adult
Cash Evans and Bailey Cooper both grew up with troubled home lives, and their experiences have taught them coping methods: for Cash, he has a “90 day policy”—90 days, no more, and he walks away without ever looking back. Bailey, on the other hand, walls herself off from love. What happens when she finds herself a new hire at Cash’s tattoo shop and they both begin to feel things that go against all of their beliefs?
At this point, do I even need to introduce this review? I mean… it’s Talia Hibbert. We all already know where this review is heading.
She’d started to think of him as a cup of coffee: black, with a shot of gingerbread syrup curled up at the bottom. Someone just needed to stir him up and make him sweet all the way through.
Bailey is the cutest damn heroine. Talia never stops slaying me with these gorgeous, geeky black girls with their amazing plus-size rep and their intricate personalities and their fantastic senses of humor, and Bailey is no exception—I even texted a friend halfway through to say that I didn’t think any of Talia’s heroines could be more lovable than Ruth Kabbah, but Bailey gives Ruth a run for her money.
He searched for some way to fix the mess he’d just made, to reverse the process he’d just started. To stop himself from falling. Too late. Gravity didn’t work that way. And sometime in the last few minutes, this woman had become the centre of his solar system.
As if Bailey wasn’t enough, Cash? Fantastic. If you like brooding, angsty bad boys with a quiet little gooey heart of gold on the inside, line up, lovelies, because Cash Evans is your man. He’s a little dominant and a little jealous without ever becoming toxic or gross, and much like all of Talia’s heroes I’ve read so far, he knows how to give our heroine space to be amazing without ever overshadowing or “rescuing” her—no damsels here, just mutual respect and consent and sexiness.
“And now I know why they call it falling. You can’t just step into this shit. And you can’t stop it once it’s started.”
As far as the plot and writing go, for this to only be a 211-page novella, Talia manages to fit a fully fleshed-out storyline in; I actually reached the end and realized that it felt like I had just finished an entire novel, because I never felt like the characters were overly simplified or like any loose ends were left unraveling. I do think there was some room left for us to explore other characters from this world later on, maybe? (Crossing my fingers for a spin-off novella about Gem, pleeeeease Talia?)
Nothing. Nada. Sorry. As usual, I’ve walked away from a Talia Hibbert story with literally NO COMPLAINTS. Swooning forever, y’all.
Overall, Merry Inkmas is an absolute diamond of a Christmas story and I cannot say enough how much I needed it in my life. It’s fun, sweet, has some amazing family themes to it, and definitely helped me get in the holiday spirit—plus, it’s surprisingly slow-burning for a novella, which is always a big positive in my book as I live for the anticipation. I also appreciated the genuine care Talia took when discussing the queer rep and abuse themes, as well as the topic of homelessness.
Everyone and anyone who enjoys steamy, sweet adult contemporary romances, especially if you’re looking for some incredibly well-done diversity in the genre. Not only do we have a fat black heroine, but we also are treated to an adorable gay side character, as well as another lovable side character who I believe had some hints dropped referring to their queerness. (QUEER SPIN-OFFS, PLEEEEAAAAAASE)
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