Bear’s Midlife Christmas by Meg Ripley

Posted January 1, 2023 by Marsha in Booksprout ARC, Sexual Content 18+, Shifter, Shifter Series / 0 Comments

Christmas is supposed to be the season of miracles. But seeing my ‘90s high school boyfriend change into a bear isn’t the miracle I’d hoped for.

I’ve spent my life trying to create the perfect family.  Now look at me, divorced at 44 with an empty nest, spending my first Christmas alone.

I just inherited my aunt’s winery up in Carlton, so at least I’ll have that to keep me busy.  But when my high school first love shows up, nothing can distract me from the feelings rushing back– Until reality smacks me in the face.

Corey took off 26 years ago and broke my heart, leaving me no choice but to move on.  But now here he is with his same boyish charm, asking for a second chance.  As we go on some festive dates together, I finally start to let my guard down with him– Until I find out he’s been hiding a dark secret.

He’s not only capable of morphing into a bear, but he was also under a feral curse for all those years.  And when a wolf from his past comes looking for revenge, so much for a holly, jolly Christmas– I’m now caught in the crossfire between two vicious beasts.

Titles in the Shifter Nation: Fated Over Forty series include — Alpha’s Midlife Baby (prequel) —♦— Bear’s Midlife Midwife —♦— Bear’s Midlife Baby —♦— Bear’s Midlife Matchmaker —♦— Bear’s Midlife Second Chance —♦— Bear’s Midlife Psychic —♦— Dragon’s Midlife Soulmate —♦— Bear’s Midlife Surrogate —♦— Bear’s Midlife Witch —♦— Cursed Midlife Bear —♦— Next Door Midlife Bear —♦— Bear’s Midlife Christmas —♦—

This is an adult 18+ story that contains language, possible violence, and/or sexual situations geared to an adult audience.

Booksprout ARC

Title:  Bear’s Midlife Christmas
Series:  Shifter Nation: Fated Over Forty #11
Author:  Meg Ripley
Published:  November 22, 2022
My Rating:  4.5 stars

Bear’s Midlife Christmas is the eleventh title in the Shifter Nation: Fated Over Forty series and what an amazing story to bring this part of Shifter Nation to a close and introduce one character from the next Shifter Nation series to soon launch.  I loved everything about this story and this couple.  It’s intriguing, and sizzling, with a lost love second chance romance along with a bit of a mystery added along the way.

Tara and her twin sister, Tricia (Next Door Midlife Bear) inherited properties from an aunt that brought them back to this small town neither ever thought they’d set foot in again.  Especially Tara as she’d lost the love of her life in this town when she was ghosted by the man she believed would love her for eternity and beyond.  She went on to marry, have two children, and divorce with her children now grown and off to college and their adult lives.  Running the winery probably wasn’t at the top of her wish list, but it gave her purpose and she was enjoying being back here – for the most part – if only those pesky memories of Corey and how he’d done her wrong weren’t so close to the surface.  Tara will soon discover that not everything is cut and dried and placed into convenient compartments of life… there are a lot of greys, and so much that is completely new to her understanding of this small town and the boy she once gave her heart to.

I enjoyed Bear’s Midlife Christmas so much.  A second chance to get love right doesn’t come around often yet these two are fighting battles on so many fronts – some from within and some from some very vile enemies.  The danger to them both is very real, the secrets complicated but if Tara can forgive and understand what really happened those lost years ago then they have a chance at that fated life together she’d dreamed of.  I loved that we get a chance to meet one character from the next upcoming Shifter Nation series.  No spoilers, but I cannot wait for that series to launch.

I had fun here, enjoyed the well-written story, and got lost in the past with hope for the future for Corey and Tara.  If you love a really good shifter romance with puzzles to sort out, a touch of danger, sizzling chemistry, and a love for the ages… then this one is perfect for you.

*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the author or author’s team via Booksprout. The opinions expressed in this review are my own – good, bad, or indifferent.*

Available for the Kindle as this title and series is currently in KU