Lovely romance with strong themes!
I've been a fan of Ms. Schott's writing for many years, so I knew that I would enjoy this piece; I just wasn't prepared for how much I'd love it! As always, her writing style, both technical and literary, is nearly flawless. She makes the labor of fiction feel effortless - the mark of a great artist. It was remarkably easy for me to get swept away by the narrative.
Read the story now
As another reviewer said, the first chapter is a bit long. I think some of Holly's musings on Yule could be cut, as they are clear in a later flashback. However, that is a small matter in light of the richness of the story as a whole.
Themes of transformation, death, and rebirth are strong, and the Pagan elements mesh perfectly with the down-home, "rustic" feel of Oklahoma. (Note: I LOVE that such a romantic, fantastical story takes place in OK!) Holly is an engaging narrator who is transformed through the love of her life, even though he has long since left this world. The supporting cast is small, but memorable and lovely. The conclusion is satisfying and beautifully heart-wrenching.
I highly recommend this story!
So...where can I get one of those paintings of Yule? ;)