Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Review: I'll Be Home For Christmas by Jessica Scott

By 12:32 PM , , , , ,

I'll Be Home For Christmas (Coming Home #2.6)
   by: Jessica Scott

Publication Date: Nov. 5, 2013
Publisher: Forever Romance
Genre: Contemporary
Age Group: Adult
Source: e-ARC provided by NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 126 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars

There's nothing in the world Army Sergeant Vic Carponti loves more than his wife and his country. Smart-mouthed and easy tempered, he takes everything as a joke...except his promise to come home to his wife, Nicole, for Christmas. As he prepares to leave for his latest deployment into Iraq, Vic will do everything he can to shield his beautiful, supportive wife from the realities of war...and from his own darkest fears.

As a career army wife, Nicole Carponti knows just what to expect from her husband's tour of duty: loneliness, relentless worry, and a seemingly endless countdown until the moment Vic walks through the door again. But when the unthinkable happens, Nicole and Vic's bond is tested like never before and changes everything they believe to be true about the power of love and the simple beauty of being home for the holidays.

Ok, I admit it. I'm obsessed with these holiday novellas. They make me really happy! However, do not let this cover fool you- this book is SO much more than a holiday story. In fact, the holiday aspect only plays a rather minor role. This is more a military story than a holiday one.  I'll Be Home For Christmas is beautiful and funny, as well as emotional and heartbreaking at times. I absolutely adored that the main couple in this book is already married and in love with one another. I really felt their relationship was so much more believable having had that establishment already made.
Nicole and Vic's relationship is a stable, strong one but both are put to the test in this novel. Vic is a Sgt. in the Army and is leaving for another deployment in Iraq. Everyone is concerned this time, as the Surge and threats are greater than ever and the odds are stacked against them coming home safely. Vic's MO is to make others laugh and help them forget the heaviness that plagues them. He is a jokester, and I loved that about him. One of his favorite things is making his wife laugh and I found my heart melting every time he did something completely ridiculous (like creating a dress for his 'man') He has his moments of apprehension with his wife. He is afraid she'll wake up one day and realize that she's with the wrong man, or that he won't be good enough to hold onto her. Nicole, however, is 100% in love with her husband and all she cares about is that he makes it back to her safe and sound.
My heart ached for Nicole, especially. Vic deploying is always difficult on her and even though she knows what to expect (the long time between calls, etc), it doesn't make it any easier. The image of her curling up in one his shirts and spraying his cologne on her absolutely shattered my heart. I can't even imagine what it would be like to be a military wife/girlfriend and have the person you love most put their life on the line time and time again. With that being said, I have a hell of a lot of respect for those in the military.
War changes people. We know this. We see young men come home from tours that suffer from PTSD and other emotional instability. Watching men in your platoon get hurt and constantly have to wonder if an IED is going to blow up and take you with it, has to be exhausting. Soldiers become distant from the ones they love- they do not want to worry their spouses, etc with the gritty details and sometimes calling home and hearing that one voice of relief brings even more turmoil.
I found this not only to be the case with Nicole and Vic, but also his XO, Trent Davila. He has not called his wife Laura in weeks and Laura is frustrated, hurt, and afraid of what this means for their relationship. The next novel features those two and I definitely want to pick it up to see if these two can repair the ever-growing rift between them.
I think this story really shows that true love is everlasting and can withstand all obstacles. Vic and Nicole go through a pretty big hurdle together toward the end of the book, but they don't give up on one another. They fight through the pain and offer each other comfort and reassurance that their love knows no bounds.

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