Once in a Snowstorm (Lily G’s Review)

Title: Once in a Snowstorm (Nortown #1)
Author: Ofelia Gränd
Publisher: Beaten Track Publishing
Release Date: 8th December, 2015
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 102 pages
Reviewed by: Lily G Blunt
Heat Level: 2.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

Daring a snowstorm might not be the smartest thing Aiden has ever done, but he can’t stand being in his flat a moment longer. With only three days to Christmas, he doesn’t want to be alone. He wants a place to belong, wants people around him who won’t look down on him. He might not find all that at his mother’s place, but at least it’s better than being alone in the city. If he can make it there, that is.

Tristan is looking forward to a quiet night in front of the TV, but instead, he has to save an idiot in designer clothes from freezing to death in his forest. Tristan tries not to notice the man’s good looks, just like he has tried not to notice any man’s good looks for the last seven years. He knows where relationships go and is far better off living alone, with his dog, in his cabin.

Aiden is driving Tristan mad with his bratty comments and irresponsible ways, and Aiden is going crazy from Tristan’s judgmental attitude. Luckily, in a few days, the weather will clear up, and the two men won’t have to be together any longer. But will a few steamy nights with the grumpy lumberjack change Aiden’s mind about wanting to leave? And will Tristan still want to go back to his peaceful, predictable life without fear of getting his heart broken?

To appreciate this story you have to accept that many overused tropes and cliches have been deliberately included and thus it’s not meant to be taken seriously. You’ll find many favourites here, including two guys snowed in over Christmas, opposites attract, enemies to lovers, insta-love, the female best friend/confidante. Even the main character names were chosen because an author had blogged about not wanting to see certain frequently used names in an m/m romance again.

Tristan is love-wary and a grumpy lumberjack who wants to be alone in his cabin in the woods. He doesn’t do any tree felling which was surprising as I would have expected people in the town to need Christmas trees at this time of year. He’s not happy about having to rescue the designer-clothed twink and reluctantly agrees to put him up for a night or two until the snow clears.

Aiden comes across as an overly sensitive drama queen. He’d lost his job in the city and was on his way to visit his mother because he was to be evicted from his home. Sadly she doesn’t appear to want him either. Aiden doesn’t do himself any favours.  He takes offence to nearly everything Tristan says to him.  Miscommunication reigns. The two guys, who are physically attracted to each other at least, are at each other’s throats for what seems like the first half of the story. Aiden makes snarky comments and issues nitpicking demands that aggravates the situation. Unfortunately, miscommunication takes up quite a large proportion of the story. Something I don’t particularly like to read, but accepted it as part of the intention of the story.

There’s physical attraction that both men try to avoid. I’m not sure why they fell in love, but when the sudden make-out scene occurs with no real buildup, we have the insta-love trope.

From here on, the romance blossoms and it’s sweet for a time. However, we have some more miscommunication and it looks like it’s the end for these newbie lovers. Don’t worry, it all ends well.

So overall, this is an enjoyable romp with a happy ending for our two guys who turned out to be nice people after all.

If you want a fun read you might enjoy this nicely written snowed-in tale. On the other hand, you might just roll your eyes at their antics.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Once in a Snowstorm provided by the author in exchange of an honest review.


Lily G. Blunt writes contemporary gay romance. She loves to explore the relationship between two men and the intensity of their physical and emotional attraction. Angst often features in her stories as she feels this demonstrates the depth of the men’s feelings for each other. Lily is forever writing imaginary scenes and plots in her head, but only a few ever make it to the page. There never seems to be enough hours in the day despite having left the teaching profession to concentrate on her writing!

Lily discovered the wonderful world of m/m romance novels five years ago via fan fiction and went on to write stories in her spare time. With the encouragement of her friends and readers she decided to publish some of her work. Lily subsequently self-published several stories via Amazon and later published short stories with Torquere Press, Wayward Ink Publishing, and Pride Publishing.

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