My Christmas novella was inspired by a friend's naughty Boxer dog. My friend would come into work every morning and tell us all about his latest mischievous escapade, and it got me thinking, could a boisterous dog like that be responsible for bringing two lonely people together? With Christmas such a romantic time (at least in books!) I thought it would be lovely to turn the story into a festive one, and Baxter's Christmas Wish is the result.
I've never actually owned a Boxer dog, but I do have a German shepherd called Tessa. She actually features in some of my Kearton Bay books, although that version of Tessa is older, and a great deal
less bouncy! Tessa has—er—what you might call a strong mouth.
We recently bought her some toys for Christmas, but couldn't resist giving her one to play with straight away. In spite of the fact that it was supposedly toughened for big dogs, it lasted less than two days before she'd pulled the seams apart, and there was stuffing all over the living room floor. I'm just hoping she doesn't destroy her other things as quickly, although I can't say I hold out much hope.
One thing I'd never do—mainly because it wouldn't last five minutes—is try to put any kind of clothing on Tessa. My daughter, however, doesn't have the same problem. Her pets have worn antlers, hoodies, onesies, Santa costumes, tinsel and all sorts of things to celebrate Christmas. Sadly, Rosie, the sweet little Cavalier, is no longer with us, but she was always happy to dress up for the occasion. Jake, the Border collie cross, is incredibly patient, and lets my daughter dress him in anything, but, as you can see from his expression, Brian the cat isn't so impressed!
On Christmas morning, all our pets will have stockings full of presents to open, and they'll get a version of our Christmas dinner, too. I fully expect they'll spend the afternoon snoring contentedly, having demolished plenty of turkey, and spent up lots of energy playing with their new toys.
I doubt very much that Baxter would sleep much. He has far too much energy and, besides, he's had quite an eventful run-up to Christmas. I'm pretty sure that he's keeping an eye on things, and congratulating himself on a job very well done.
Thank you so much Sharon, for sharing all about your pets. They all look gorgeous and I think you will all have a very Happy Christmas.
Here's the blurb for Baxter's Christmas Wish.
When Ellie Jackson's marriage unexpectedly ends, she and her young son, Jake, seek refuge with Ellie's cousin, Maddie. But Maddie soon tires of her house guests, including her own boisterous rescue Boxer dog, Baxter.
A trip to the park proves eventful, when Baxter literally bumps into Dylan. Kind, funny, and not-too-shabby in the looks department, Dylan soon wins Ellie and Jake over, and Ellie dares to dream of a happy ending at last.
But as the snow starts to fall and Christmas approaches, Ellie realises time is running out for them. Dylan clearly has a secret that may ruin their happiness, Baxter's home is in jeopardy, and she has no way of making Jake's wishes come true.
Must Ellie give up on her dreams, or can Baxter lead her back to happiness?
Light the fire, switch on those Christmas tree lights, curl up with a hot chocolate, and enjoy this heart-warming festive story of love, home, and second chances.
Wishing you all a very merry Christmas! xx
About the author
Sharon wrote her first book when she was ten. It was about a boarding school that specialised in ballet, and, given that she'd never been to boarding school and hadn't a clue about ballet, it's probably a good thing that no copy of this masterpiece survives.
She is the author of four other novels, There Must Be an Angel, A Kiss from a Rose, This Other Eden, and Once Upon a Long Ago. She has also written for The People's Friend.
Sharon lives in East Yorkshire, with her husband and their dog. She is one tenth of The Write Romantics, and a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association.
She has a love/hate relationship with chocolate, is a devoted Whovian, and prone to all-consuming crushes on fictional heroes. The situation has recently become critical since she was given a DVD of Outlander for Christmas.
Find out more about Sharon at http://sharonbooth.co.uk
You can buy Baxter's Christmas Wish at hyperurl.co/baxterschristmaswish