Mail-Order Christmas Baby (Montana Courtships #1) by Sherri Shackelford

The Rancher’s Special Delivery 

The “package” is addressed to him, but rancher Sterling Blackwell certainly didn’t order a baby! More scandalous still, he and the town’s pretty teacher are named as parents. With gossip running wild, only a marriage of convenience can protect little Gracie and their reputations until her real family is found. 

Heather O’Connor is content to be the spinster schoolmarm of Valentine, Montana…until Gracie’s arrival stirs her heart. She can’t keep the adorable child without Sterling’s help, though she promises not to interfere with his life. But staying aloof from her handsome husband isn’t easy with a tiny matchmaker in tow. A mistake brought them together, but love might just make them a family by Christmas…

Mail-Order Christmas Baby (Montana Courtships #1) by Sherri Shackelford

If you’re like me and are creeped out by covers with only a baby (or babies) or a toddler on them, don’t worry: there’s much more to this book!

I actually skipped over Mail-Order Christmas Baby the first time I was picking a review book – that kid-cover! – but then I went back, realised the author was one whose work I really enjoy, and decided to be brave.

I am glad I did. This is one of the more mature (not in age, but in character behaviour and author skill) Love Inspired books I’ve read, and I really enjoyed both hero and heroine.

The story has twists and turns and never drags. In fact, I might have enjoyed this book more than any other Love Inspired Historical I’ve read – and I’ve read quite a few!

All the characters came across as regular people, all with their own personalities and flaws. Yes, even the cherubic child on the cover isn’t perfect! A nice surprise for a Christmas/Christian/child-themed book.

For me, the mark of a good Christian book is that you don’t remember it IS a “Christian” book, but just enjoy it as a good story. This is definitely the case here. Sure, these characters go to church a couple of times, but #1 it’s Christmas and #2 it’s the 1800s – people did that!

Other than that, this is simply a nice little (sex-free) romance that has some kissing etc., but gives our characters time to fall in love.

A side note: I was really surprised to see the American word “diaper” was absent from the story, so I did a little research. It turns out that term has only been used since the 1950s.

I would definitely recommend Mail-Order Christmas Baby for anyone who likes historical romance set in the American wilderness. It’s not too cheesy, but it’s perfect for Christmas.


(Oh, and you SHEAR a sheep, but they SHEER the sheep in this book. I’m Australian; we have sheep everywhere. It’s a bit hard to overlook that one!)


Review copy provided by NetGalley.

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