My review: Faux Ho Ho restored my faith in holiday romance stories!

Book cover for Faux Ho Ho. A winter scene on a snowy night. Two men stand in front of several tables draped in festive red cloth. On either side of them are street lamps wrapped in red and white ribbon, like a candy cane. The posts of the lamps are attached to black wrought iron gates. There are Christmas lights strung high over the tables.
Faux Ho Ho is available now from Book Strokes Books!

I can’t even tell you how much I’ve grown to despise holiday stories, and here’s the kicker: I’m a sappy romantic human! I’ve just found so many of them feel snoozy and overdone. Most times, I can’t get beyond a few pages.

Then I read ’Nathan Bourgoine’s Faux Ho Ho holiday novella. OH MY FREAKING WORD! This author restored my faith in holiday romance. I loved it so much. I cheered and whooped at the end, too.

Faux Ho Ho is about Silas, a gay man (and kind-hearted geek) living in Ottawa who desperately wants to avoid attending holidays with his ultra-conservative, ableist, and homophobic family in Alberta. Silas’s “tank” of a roomie, the beefy, delicious, and altruistic Dino pretends to be the boyfriend during a video-call with Silas’s mother. That brief charade gets Silas out of having to go back for Thanksgiving, but then his loving and accepting sister is having a December wedding. The invitation includes Silas and Dino! Oops.

Aside from this being an amazing take on the fake boyfriend trope, there are some solid truths about how gross ultra-conservative attitudes are towards marginalized people. It also underscores that even though you might have loving family members among the trolls, there’s nothing like chosen family.

As a disabled woman with fibromyalgia, I loved the representation in Anne, one of the side characters. LOL—she is no pathetic soul. I would have made the same choice she did. You’ll get what I mean when you read this novella. And trust me, you need to buy it!

I just cannot recommend it enough. Makes for a cozy read during the holiday season! (Actually, it’s so bleeping good, it makes for a great read any time of year.)

You can follow ’Nathan Burgoine on his website, to find out more about him and his other works. He’s one of the few authors who gets me stoked whenever a new story of his comes out!

Cait Gordon, in a black and white digital sketch
Cait Gordon

Cait Gordon is a disability advocate and the author of Life in the ’Cosm and The Stealth Lovers. When she’s not writing, Cait’s editing manuscripts and running The Spoonie Authors Network, a blog whose contributors manage disabilities and/or chronic conditions. She also teamed up with Kohenet Talia C. Johnson to co-edit the Nothing Without Us anthology in an attempt to take over the world. Narf.

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