BOOK REVIEW & GIVEAWAY – An Ex for Christmas by Lauren Layne

BOOK REVIEW & GIVEAWAY - An Ex for Christmas by Lauren Layne

An Ex for Christmas became my new favorite Christmas romance! So check out my 4.5 Star Review below and enter a fabulous giveaway! Enjoy!

BOOK REVIEW & GIVEAWAY – An Ex for Christmas by Lauren LayneAn Ex for Christmas (Love Unexpectedly #5)
by Lauren Layne
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads


She’s making a list—and checking it twice. But is there a nice guy among all her naughty exes? The New York Times bestselling author of Blurred Lines returns with a charming friends-to-lovers rom-com.

When a psychic tells spunky, superstitious Kelly Byrne that she’s already met her true love, she becomes obsessed with the idea of tracking him down before Christmas. Kelly immediately writes up an “Ex List” and starts contacting old boyfriends to figure out which one is the one. When her college sweetheart rolls into town, Kelly convinces herself that they’re meant to be. The trouble is, sparks are flying with someone she’s never given a chance: her best friend, Mark.

Mark Blakely has watched the guys on Kelly’s list break her heart, and he’s not looking forward to watching them do it all over again. Mark’s always been there for her, but the timing’s never worked out for their relationship to be something more. Now, just as Mark is ready to move on, the sexual tension between them is suddenly off the charts. With Christmas morning around the corner, he just hopes Kelly will wake up and realize that everything she wants has been right in front of her all along.


If you’re looking for a book that will put you in the perfect Christmas mood, then definitely pick up An Ex for Christmas!  Not only was it fun, flirty and sexy, but I found myself humming Christmas songs for days after I finished that last page.  It was impossible not to since we got to witness them decorating for the holidays, there was Christmas songs playing in the background and the story even took place in a setting that felt like a winter wonderland.  An Ex for Christmas became my favorite Christmas romance, and I hope you end up loving it just as much as I did!

I turn back to Mark’s house and look up at the second floor, even though I know his bedroom window faces the opposite way. As expected, there’s nothing but still darkness, and I can’t stop the sinking sensation that things are somehow changing between us. And I don’t know why, and I don’t know how to stop it.

Kelly Byrne was a character I definitely haven’t met in a book before.  She used Magic 8 balls, horoscopes and tarot cards to help determine where she should go in life.  I liked her quirky, friendly ways, especially since she was a huge ball of happy energy.  On her way home at the train station, a woman beckoned to Kelly that she had news for her.  She told Kelly that she’d already met The One, and he’d come back to her before Christmas.  Taking it as the honest truth, she made a list of her exes and slowly started meeting back up with them.

The last thing I need when I’m trying to hunt down my exes is to start getting sexy thoughts about my BFF.

When Kelly started meeting her exes I was either a laughing, cringing, or desperately needing to cover my face kinda mess.  Oh my gosh, count on being more than entertained each time she met a different ex lol.  I felt bad for her because each time her hopes were so high.  She was always so optimistic!  But then when disaster would strike, she’d be reminded all over again why that man was definitely on her ex list.  Thankfully Kelly always had a constant in her life, no matter how horrific her meet-ups were.  And that was her best friend Mark Blakely.

He doesn’t meet my eyes. Not once. Not until he lowers his hand, his fingertips brushing over my lips at the very moment his gaze lifts to mine.
It feels like an electric shock.
The touch of his fingers on my lips, the heat of his gaze, the weight of his body pinning mine to the ground . . .
Somehow all of those combined is creating the most intense, unexpectedly carnal moment of my life. My eyes flutter in confusion.
No, that can’t be right. “Carnal” isn’t a word I associate with Mark.

Kelly and Mark had been best of friends for the last ten years.  They shared a dog, a backyard and they were extremely comfortable around each other.  Yet I couldn’t help but melt during so many of their interactions.  And the thing was, Kelly started to be affected during some of those moments too.  Which she shouldn’t be, because he was just her bff right?!  Well it didn’t help that gruff, sexy Mark was kinda hard to read.  You see his actions, words or even eyes would come across in an ever so sexy way, but then the next second he’d go back to being just Mark.  So I found myself smiling and sighing out loud a lot of the times when Mark was in the picture.  I was all for Kelly taking that step to see if Mark was into her too.   Yet she didn’t want to risk their friendship and tumble down that path.  I got it, in real life I would have acted the same way that Kelly did, but since this is a book I found myself wanting to bonk her over the head ever so lightly with her Magic 8 Ball and say go after Mark.

He steps even closer, a slight smile playing at his lips. “Kell?”
“Shut up.”
He sets a knuckle to the bottom of my chin, tilting my face toward his.
My heart’s still pounding, although now it’s not so much about panic as . . . want.
I want nothing more at this moment than his lips on mine, his hands on my back pulling me close . . .
Mark’s lips brush my cheek.
My cheek.
He pulls back slightly, eyes locking on mine for one heated heartbeat.
And then he steps away . “Night, Kell.” His voice is rough.
He turns and walks into the raging blizzard, leaving me staring after him, mostly oblivious to the snow that’s getting all over my kitchen floor, soaking my borrowed pajama pants.
I’m ignoring the storm outside because I’m too aware of the storm within . . . and the startling realization that I want a do-over on that mistletoe kiss.
Because a part of me wishes it had gone very, very differently.

The way the story ended *happy screaming* awwww it was the best ever!  So if you adore happy quirky females, guys that give off the gruff and sexy vibe, and a cute story line that will give you all the Christmas feels,  then definitely check out this book.  LL did a fabulous job writing this festive and fun Christmas story, and I’m hoping you’ll love it too!

*ARC kindly provided by Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

About Lauren Layne:

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of romantic comedies.  She lives in New York City with her husband.

A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career. She signed with her agent in 2012, and her first book was published in summer of 2013. Since then, she’s written over two dozen books, hitting the USA TODAYNew York Times, iBooks, and Amazon bestseller lists.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Amazon



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  1. Theresa Hernandez

    Your thoughts are very similar to mine. Remember when I said I thought I knew how it was going to end? I was right, but I love that I didn’t anticipate how it got to that ending.
    Theresa Hernandez recently posted…#1LineWed – Rough or ToughMy Profile

    • Jen

      Yes, I wondered what you meant by that! I didn’t guess that special little thing at the end of the book, but I loved how it all played out. I’m so happy you enjoyed another one of her books too!

      • Theresa Hernandez

        Not THAT special little thing, but who she was going to end up with and what the fortune teller’s message really meant.
        Theresa Hernandez recently posted…Cover Reveal – RIGHT KISS WRONG GUY (Offsides) by Natalie DeckerMy Profile

        • Jen

          Ohhhhhhh okay LOL!! I was going to say that you are very talented at guessing endings ha! If you know of any other holiday books that have this type of feel to them please let me know. I would love to read another Christmassy book.

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