Opening Editorial by Lezli Robyn
We hope you are all warmed up for our next issue of Heart’s Kiss. Leading into our holiday offering, the last issue in our first year as editors of this magazine—Wow, what a year!—Tina and I discussed our wish to represent different types of festive occasions, because not everyone celebrates the end of an often hectic but successful year the same way with their family. While some people enjoy a beautiful white Christmas akin to the ones you witness in your favorite Hallmark movies, others celebrate a Christmas Day in singlet tops and shorts on the other side of the world, sweating off a year’s worth of food indulgences while they roast way too many meats in the outside weber (cooker) in 109 degree heat. Others do not celebrate Christmas at all.
So for Issue 12, we’re delighted that Debra Jess decided to write us a story, “Shaped by You”, that focuses on finding love during a Jewish holiday season. Tina Gower also delights us with her pagan and paranormal offering, “The Lipski Partner Axiom”—jackals and gremlins and angels, oh my!—where her romantic leads celebrate Yule, finding love during their attempts to foil a crime.
The author we’re featuring this issue is the amazing Susan Donovan, whose novella was so flawless Tina and I were hard pressed to find anything to edit, except to say it was amazing, and invoked all the right feels. It depicts a British immigrant’s journey through loneliness and unintentional fumbles in the lead up to Christmas, as she falls in love with a man in uniform and discovers the family she was missing. We also interviewed Susan about her writing process and how her life as influenced her writing. It’s an equally fascinating read.
For something different, Gracie Wilson’s story, “Song of the Brave”, takes place on New Year’s Eve, a holiday where people celebrate the year just gone, and the promise of the year to come—and to more importantly gather the courage to kiss the one they love when the clock strikes twelve. Or if you are wanting a good swoon, bestseller Anthea Lawson will take you back in time to deliver us love in Victorian times.
Once you are done with the fiction, this issue’s non-fiction section includes more recommended reads by C.S. DeAvilla, a discussion on different holiday traditions and tropes in Julie Pitzel’s regular “You Read That?” column and the recipe for a Chocolate Ganache Cake by our personal temptress, Andrea Abedi, that will make you fall in love with her.
And last, but definitely not least, we have an exciting update written by Christine Feehan, the queen of paranormal fiction, telling us about an exciting development in her Carpathian Series. You will not want to miss out on that. (How many of you are now flipping to the back of the issue to read it? Wait—I’ve got more to tell you!)
Maybe you will heat up some eggnog, skewer marshmallows on a hardy stick or fire pocker, and plant yourself in the front of the fire in your warmest sweater and eighties-inspired legwarmers to read the holiday issue of Heart’s Kiss on your e-reader. Or, perhaps you slip on your bathers (Aussie for swimsuit), grab some fish and chips, and head to your local beach to devour the print copy of the magazine as you recline in your beach-chair, beer in hand.
However you are spending your end-of-year holidays, we hope the contents of this issue warm you up in all the right ways. I could just wish you all a Happy Holidays, but that seems to be cheating, somehow. So I wish you all a loving Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s—or Christmahannukwanzear for short. We hope your holidays are filled with family and amazing food, and most importantly, love.