TWO 4 Stars for Blame It On The Fruitcake (Part of Sleigh Ride Anthology) by Pat Henshaw #MM #Holiday


Title: Blame It On The Fruitcake (Part of Sleigh Ride Anthology)
Author Name & Publisher: Pat Henshaw (Dreamspinner Press)


Fruitcake is the laughingstock of the holiday season. But can it be an aphrodisiac instead? Motorcycle mechanic Sam McGuire is surprised to find a gaily wrapped box on his doorstep with a piece of fruitcake accompanying an invitation to a holiday party.

Wondering if he’ll fit in, Sam attends the party—mostly to get more of the fruitcake he falls in love with—and meets Jay Merriweather, his new neighbor. The lure of Jay’s big family and its holiday tradition of enjoying Grandma’s fruitcake hook Sam, as does the sexy man himself.

But Sam can’t imagine why handsome, college-educated Jay would want someone like him, who was raised in a children’s home and barely graduated high school. Maybe the magic of the holiday season can help two men who seem so different come together like the ingredients in a well-made fruitcake.

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This was such a cute holiday story!

So with this story we get Sam who is a motorcycle mechanic and was a orphan so he really did not get very good Christmas’s growing up. Well he has never tried fruit cake before and gets his chance when a new neighbor gives him some as a present when he invites Sam to his housewarming party. Let’s just say Sam and the fruit cake hit it off right from the start and he loves it but at the same time he has a instant attraction to his new neighbor.

I thought the way this author wrote this story and these characters was so good! You get your sweet in this book and you get to see Sam work through his fears as he grows closer to his new neighbor.

All together I really liked this story and would definitely recommend this novella!



This is the first book by this author and I loved it. There were parts that were humorous and parts that were down right frustrating. I immediate felt for Sam because now one should be left out of the holidays. I also love Jay and was glad to finally see them get together.  This was only 36 pages and the author made every page count. Great job, Ms. Henshaw.



I STARTED to wipe my feet on the front door mat and just about stepped on a tiny package and note.

What the hell? Nobody gave me Christmas presents. Nobody. Ever. The Children’s Home had a pick-a-number gift system. Then the trading began. But gifts given directly to me?


After wiping my feet on the mat, I opened the door to my loft apartment. I juggled the paperwork and the present with its envelope. I shucked my shoes by the door, put everything in my arms on the kitchen table, and got rid of the tie.

I don’t do ties unless something’s really important, like meeting with a loan officer to get money to build an addition to the garage. Mostly I’m a jeans, work boots, and ratty T-shirts kinda guy who makes his money without wearing a suit. I fix and modify bikes, mostly Harleys, since I’m one of their certified mechanics. These days, I’m catching the wave of weekend warriors who’re donning black leather jackets and forming clubs after their offices cough them out for two days.

Living in the central valley of California makes mine a year-round job. In fact, next year I’ll turn a corner into a bigger garage and two more actual employees. With Janene, our bookkeeper and resident Mama, we’ll be a full-time family of six and as many community-college interns as I can get.

I’d climbed out of the Children’s Home and was now a productive member of society, even though I probably didn’t look like one to the common guy on the street. I sure didn’t to any of the prospective mommies and daddies who periodically came by the Home when I was a kid.

Now I had my very first Christmas present just for me, nobody else. I didn’t even have to pick the right number for it or trade with someone else.

I poked the puffy bow. It sprang back and shouted, “Open me!”

I decided to tackle the envelope first. The handwriting was blunt lettering, a lot like Tim’s down at the shop.

Hello, Sam McGuire in Apartment 300. How are you? I’m your new neighbor in 303.

Hope you’re not allergic to fruitcake because the piece in the box is my grandmother’s traditional recipe and the only way to start the holidays.

I’m holding a get-together on Saturday, December 1, 9:00 p.m. to whenever. You’re invited. If you can’t party here on Saturday, I promise to try to keep the noise down after 10:30.

I’d like to meet you.

Happy holidays. Hope to see you soon.

Jay Merriweather


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Pat Henshaw was born and raised in Nebraska and promptly left the cold and snow after college, living at various times in Texas, Colorado, Northern Virginia, and Northern California. Pat has found joy in visiting Mexico, Canada, Europe, Nicaragua, Thailand, and Egypt, and relishes trips to Stowe, Vermont, and Eugene, Oregon, to see family. Now retired, Pat spent her life surrounded by words: Teaching English composition at the junior college level; writing book reviews for newspapers, magazines, and websites; helping students find information as a librarian; and promoting PBS television programs.


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