To those who still suffer the wounds of war.
Kelly Kennedy thought her life was finally on track. Engaged to the man of her dreams and with a baby on the way, she reassures her five-year-old daughter, Bree, that the father she picked for Christmas still loves her.
Unfortunately, war veteran Tyler Manning has been away most of the year. Recovering from PTSD isn’t easy. Rather than worry Kelly, Tyler spends his time traveling to Afghanistan to work at a children's charity he founded.
Kelly decides to distract Bree with promises of a pet for Christmas. When Tyler is taken hostage by terrorists, she finds it hard to convince Bree that they will truly be a family in time for Christmas.
A Pet for Christmas is a sequel A Father for Christmas. While it can be read as a standalone, you'll get more of the relationship aspect between Kelly, Tyler, and Bree by reading A Father for Christmas first.
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A Pet for Christmas by Rachelle Ayala is an emotional ride. There are moments it made me tear up or fear for the main characters. It's a sequel to A Father for Christmas, which is where one meets Kelly, Tyler, and Bree.
Kelly has been a single mother of Bree for many years. She's not one who willing and quickly admits when she needs help. She's too independent for her own good. Getting used to depending on someone else is hard for her. She's not the greatest at vocalizing her needs to Tyler, who she claims to be her fiance to her family, when her pregnancy starts to get rocky.
Tyler had once been a homeless veteran. With his new career, Tyler's focus is getting spread out far and thin. His traveling and PTSD from the war is causing insecurities for Kelly and Tyler in their relationship.
Bree is one an absolute adorable little girl. Her honesty and innocent questions kept making me laugh. She's a very determined and persistent child. With a little brother on the way, Bree is starting to feel left out. She wants her real father around, not just Tyler. If she can't get her real father, she's willing to settle for a pet of her choice. As time goes on, Bree grows to find what's more important to her, a puppy, her real father, or Tyler.
When Tyler's work get attacked in Afghanistan, I feared for him. I couldn't imagine what Kelly and Bree was going through with not hearing news about his whereabouts for the longest time.
The story kept my interest the entire time. The whole time I wanted to know how Tyler handles becoming a hostage and how Kelly handles not having him near. I kept wanting the best for them and for them to get past their insecurities with their relationship if they were to be reunited.
"Heartwarming story of hope and second chances.” - Ruth Davis on Book 1, A Father for Christmas
"Absolutely breathtaking love story." - Amber McCallister on Book 1, A Father for Christmas
A Father for Christmas (A Veteran’s Christmas Book 1)
To all the veterans who gave so much.
Single mother Kelly Kennedy can't afford lavish gifts for her four-year-old daughter, Bree. Homeless veteran Tyler Manning doesn't believe he deserves a Merry Christmas.
When Bree asks Santa for a father and picks Tyler, both Tyler and Kelly vow to keep Bree from being hurt while fighting their feelings for each other.
Tyler struggles with frightening flashbacks that scare Kelly. Meanwhile, Kelly's criminal past threatens her chance for happiness. Tyler and Kelly must believe in the power of love to give Bree her best Christmas ever.
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The characters in this story had very interesting pasts.
Kelly Kennedy is a single mother who used to work on Wall Street. A bad trade made her lose everything but her family. She had to spend time in jail, which has changed part of her outlook on life. Once out, she did her best to make ends meet and raise her daughter, Bree, well with the help of her mother and sister.
Bree happens to be Kelly's daughter. Conceived by artificial insemination. Bree didn't know her family was missing anything until she went to school. She started to notice she didn't have a father like everyone else. She asked Santa for a father for Christmas. That same day, Bree got lost and ran into Tyler Manning.
Tyler Manning was to be a football star, but he gave all that up to serve his country like his father had. He seen terrible things that happened during the war. He suffers lucid flashbacks of those times. He's a hero in the eyes of the public, but a killer in his own eyes. He gives what ever money he makes to the orphaned children of the war, trying to make amends for what happened over there.
Tyler overhears Bree telling Santa that she wants a father for Christmas. He finds it amusing that Bree and secretly, Kelly, want a father for Christmas. Bree got separated from her mother at the mall, and Bree finds Tyler underneath the big Christmas tree like Santa said her father would be. Kelly finds Tyler with Bree, and she thinks he's trying to kidnap her daughter.
They got off on a rough start, but they keep running into each other after the incident at the mall. With the help of Kelly's mother and Bree, Tyler and Kelly get to know each other. Their relationship begins to grow, yet both of them keep pushing the other away for different reasons.
The characters were well done, but the story line had parts missing towards the end. When Tyler runs, Kelly goes to find him, but parts of the journey for them both are left out. It made the story a bit choppy and didn't flow as well as the rest of the story did.
About the author
Rachelle is the founder of an online writing group, Romance in a Month, an active member of the California Writer’s Club, Fremont Chapter, and a volunteer for the World Literary Cafe. She is a very happy woman and lives in California with her husband. She has won awards in multicultural and historical romance.
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I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.
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