Monday, November 1, 2010

Review: Dating Mr. December by Phillipa Ashley

From the author's website:
When a nice girl asks twelve men to get naked, it’s sure to cause a scandal… Emma Tremayne leaves her high-powered PR job and moves to the Lake District looking for peace, quiet-and celibacy. So perhaps it’s not the best idea when, in the spirit of “community-mindedness,” she agrees to help the local mountain rescue team fund raise by putting together a “tasteful” nude calendar. Especially since quite a lot of the community seems to mind what she’s up to-including the tall, dark and handsome Mr. December, Will Tennant, who appears to have gotten the wrong impression about Emma’s intentions. So how does she convince him that he’s more than just the flavor of the month?

This book was originally published as Decent Exposure in the UK and was made into a Lifetime movie which premiered in December 2009.

As Dating Mr. December opens, Emma Tremayne is trying to convince the local mountain rescue team that a "nudie" calendar - featuring the team members - would be just the fund raiser they need to earn enough money for much-needed renovations to their rescue station. She's got just about everyone convinced, except Will Tennant, one of the senior members of the team. He thinks it will turn their team into a laughingstock. After everyone else on the team votes to do the calendar, Will reluctantly agrees to participate.

Emma decides she's not going to let Will get to her, even though he's tall, sexy, and wrong about the calendar. She needs the calendar to succeed, to prove that she's as good at PR as she says she is. She's still stinging from the betrayal of discovering her boyfriend and boss had been seeing each other behind her back, and when she was fired, she fled to Bannerdale to get away from London and start over.

Will doesn't want to like the new PR agent, but she's sexy and fearless and he might be falling for her. He's got a few issues of his own, like never falling in love after his fiancee broke his heart two years ago.

Dating Mr. December is a cute, romantic story set in the small, mountainous town of Bannerdale, England. Emma was a bit of a fish-out-of-water, which was endearing. Her character was sweet I felt so sorry for her broken heart, however - I wanted to smack her for being such an idiot with Will. In that same vein, Will was sweet and sexy, but I wanted to shake him and tell him he was being an idiot with Emma. These two were so hot and cold I couldn't keep up with who was mad at who. The way they'd crash together and then jump away was a bit frustrating to this reader; I felt like there was no basis for the relationship to move forward.

Those frustrations aside, I liked the story - it reminded me of the movie Calendar Girls. Dating Mr. December is an entertaining contemporary romance that had me wishing I could visit the town and meet the characters. I also enjoyed Ms. Ashley's descriptions of the mountains and lakes - it sounds like a beautiful place. The epilogue was a satisfying conclusion to Emma and Will's story. I'm interested in the Lifetime movie (although they changed the setting to Montana) and will be looking that up in the future.

On a totally random side note, I liked the size of this book - it's not trade paperback or mass market size, but rather a combination of the two.

My Rating:

This book was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


  1. When I read the synopsis I thought it sounded like a movie I saw a year ago - and then I read it was on Lifetime. I remember that it was cute.

  2. That's why it was so familiar! I watched that movie :) It was cutish

  3. Mary: I can see how it would be a really cute movie, I'm going to look for it.

    Blodeuedd: LOL, you saw the movie? I think it will be cute.