Return of the Christmas Bride by Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy

Heat Level 2
SKU 978-0-3695-0736-5

Create Wishlist

They fell in love as teenagers and became lovers, promised to wed. Delaney Sackett wanted to experience the wider world to attend college elsewhere but Guthrie Travis begs her not to go, afraid she won't come back. When she does, they plan a Christmas wedding.

She leaves again and doesn't return for a decade and by then, everything they once had is ancient history. When she returns to their hometown, their chance meeting ends in a kiss. They talk about what happened and realize that neither had known the full story. Within weeks, they're together again, planning another Christmas wedding that neither believes anything can stop.

When Delaney is abducted, however, their lives—and the weddingare on hold and hers may hang in the balance. With days left until the planned Christmas Eve wedding, it will take a holiday miracle for Delaney to return and for the wedding to kick off the rest of their lives together.



            Maybe Thomas Wolfe, some ancient author, had said you can’t go home again but Delaney could and did. Nothing was the same for her when she returned to the small Missouri town where she had been born and raised. She had always thought when—because it had never been if—she came home, it would be in triumph. She would be famous and rich, and everyone, especially Guthrie Travis, would be impressed. Instead, she returned to teach creative writing at the community college she had refused to attend after high school and she hadn’t spoken with Guthrie in years. Although she still had the promise ring, she didn’t wear it on her finger. Instead, it was on a long chain hidden beneath her clothes. She didn’t try to contact him when she came to town. Instead, she rented a small house, got her bearings, and settled down before the semester started. Delaney planned to be content and she was, right up till the day she ran into Guthrie at the smallest grocery in town.

            She walked out, purchases in hand, and almost ran into Guthrie. Delaney stumbled and would have fallen if he hadn’t caught her. His arms steadied her. “Excuse me,” he said in the voice she remembered so well. “My fault.”

            Delaney stared at him and he glanced down, then drew a sharp breath.

            “Guthrie, it’s mine,” she said. “I wasn’t paying attention.”

            He paled. “Delaney, I didn’t know you were back.”

            There were so many things she wanted to say but if they were going to stick to trite and polite, she could do that too. “I’ve been here for almost a month,” she told him. “I’m going to teach writing.”

            Guthrie quirked an eyebrow. “At the high school?”

            “College, starting Monday,” Delaney said. “Where do you work?”

            If she had guessed, she would have figured he worked at a local factory or maybe taught ag at the high school. Maybe he was a farmer or rancher.

            “I’m a highway patrol officer,” Guthrie told her. “I’ve only been back in this district for eleven months.”

            Delaney didn’t know what to say.

“It was good to see you,” she said and tried to move past him. Talking seemed awkward and uncomfortable.

            “Good?” he asked and let go of her. “That’s all you got to say after all these years, Delaney? I’d hope to shout that we can do better than that.”

            So did she but she refused to admit it. “I don’t know what to say.”

            “I do,” he said and before she could walk away, Guthrie kissed her. His mouth tasted sweet and he smelled the same, a rich masculine scent that was part cologne and part just Guthrie. His hands were firm as they pulled her close and she gave back the kiss.

            “Excuse me.” An elderly woman stood there, hands on hips, wanting to enter the store. From the sour expression on her face, she didn’t approve of public canoodling.

            “I’m sorry,” Guthrie said. He stepped around Delaney to hold the door open for the woman and once she’d entered the store, he turned back to her. “I’d like to talk to you, Delaney.”

            Talk? He’d just kissed her breathless and now he wanted to talk. “I don’t know, Guthrie.”

            His lips curved into a slight grin but his eyes—those rich, dark-chocolate eyes—met hers, serious and intense. “Please?”

            Her heart did some skips and flips, then she nodded. “All right, but not here.”

Product Reviews

Score: 4 out of 5 (based on 10 ratings)
leave a review
Delaney & Guthrie!!
Written by Wendy L on 30th Jan 2023

Delaney and Guthrie were in love as teenagers, and planned to get married, and they have three attempts, but something always happens, and she leaves. Will they ever get their HEA? This is an ok story, and the first of this author’s work which I have read. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.

Christmas Read
Written by Danee on 30th Jan 2023

On the recommendation of a friend, I started reading this book by the author Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy. It's a sweet and a second chances story in one and it was also nice that there was a Christmas touch to it and that the characters did everything they could to be together.

Written by tburbr on 30th Jan 2023

This was an entertaining read that kept my attention from beginning to end with the endearing characters. This was a great second chance romance.

Short Story
Written by Jeanne R on 30th Jan 2023

This is the first book I've read written by Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy; I can’t wait to read more of her books. This is part of Romance on the Go Series; it is a stand-alone short story. The story is about Delaney & Guthrie; they were together in high school; when she leaves for college he doesn’t think she come back but does. Then she leave again and gone for over ten years when she is abducted. I received a free copy of this book via booksprout and I’m voluntarily leaving a review.

Written by Dannie on 30th Jan 2023

Waiting a decade for you love to return can be awful. I thought this was a great story. Love these characters.

The Christmas Bride!
Written by Mary on 30th Jan 2023

This is a short and quick read about second chances, third chances and young forever love. Delaney and Guthrie we high school sweethearts that planned three times to get married. However, misunderstandings and meddling individuals keep them apart. Now ten years after their original parting they get another chance. However, will a stalker and a mother destroy this final chance at love. This is a good story. It did seem a little rushed but overall a good read. I love the characters!

Third time the charm?
Written by Babs on 30th Jan 2023

Part of the Romance on the Go series. Delaney Sackett and Guthrie Travis will try three times to get married at Christmas, but each time something comes up and she leaves, for years at a time. This is their third try will things work out for them this time? I enjoyed reading this story. This is a new Author to me. I received a copy of this book via Evernight and am voluntarily leaving a review.

Sweet Second Chance Suspenseful Read--Great short read-
Written by Andrea R on 30th Jan 2023

This was a very sweet and quick read. I loved the second chance romance with the added suspense towards the end. Loved how these to fought to be together. Great read for sure.

Return of the Christmas Bride Romance on the Go by Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
Written by mickala r on 19th Dec 2022


Lovely read
Written by Firecracker on 19th Dec 2022

What charming romance, simply lovely with a HEA. It will make you smile and see love in a new light.