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Publisher's Summary

Zac never had a family of his own, but Rudy has enough to share.

Shy, inexperienced Rudy has a crush on Zac from the moment his new colleague walks through the door. On an office night out before Christmas, Rudy finds the courage to make a move, and they form a tentative bond. When he discovers Zac will be alone at Christmas, he invites Zac to come home with him.

Zac prefers to keep people at arm's length. Yet when Rudy offers him a family Christmas it's impossible to resist. With no parents of his own, Zac is pleasantly surprised to be welcomed by Rudy's. The only drawback is that everyone assumes they're a couple. Unwilling to disappoint Rudy's mum and make Christmas awkward, they decide not to deny it.

It's not a chore for Zac to pose as Rudy's boyfriend, but the pretense makes him want things that scare him-things like a real relationship with Rudy. Zac's suffered enough rejection in his life already and is afraid to risk his heart. If he can get over his past rejection and let Rudy inside his armor, he might get more for Christmas than he ever imagined.

©2016 Jay Northcote (P)2017 Jay Northcote

What listeners say about A Family for Christmas

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Sweet little Christmas Story

Sweet little Christmas Story that will make you rejoy.
Rudy has a big family to share, Zac has no family at all but he will learn hiw to be loved by one... and by Rudy.
I had some diffuculties at the beginning, I am not used to a real English accent I'm more of an American accent) and English is not my mother tongue but after a bit the listening got perfect.
Loved it.

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heartwarming...

I really enjoyed this quality quick listen. Rudy and Zach make you root for them from the beginning.

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A feel-good story with great narration

Disclaimer: I was given a code for a free copy of this audiobook in exchange for an unbiased review.

Listening to A Family for Christmas was an interesting experience, as I'd already read, and enjoyed, the novella in e-book form. It's a lovely, relatively light-hearted, low(ish) angst story, even though it somehow never quite comes together for me. I'm a big fan of Jay Northcote's writing, and their wordsmithing here is good as always. But the story ends up being a bit insta-love for me, and Zac raises some real concerns about his relationship with Rudy that I feel never really get resolved for the reader, though an *adorable* epilogue helps cement the feeling of an HEA.

It's a story that is more than the sum of its parts, and that is especially the case combined with Mark Steadman's fantastic narration. If you're looking for a feel-good treat, with some steamy sex, loving family, adorably awkward guys, and awesome narration, it's certainly worth a listen.

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sweet holiday romance

Jay does it again. I love all his stories.
Rudy and Jay work together but don't interact. The night out with the office changes all that.
Holidays at family home changes everything.

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Sweet Christmas story

I don’t usually read Christmas stories, but I received this audiobook with a promise of an honest review. I loved Rudy and Zach, and I thought their shy, awkward relationship was honest.and they were very likable. The descriptions of Rudy’s family and the Christmas celebration was easy to imagine. And I really enjoyed the narration. It all came together as a sweet, delightful way to spend a few hours.

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Love love love

This was such a cute and delightful Christmas story. It really brought a smile to my face. The narration is AMAZING and along with the wonderful story, this is definitely a must read/listen.

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Found Family is the best

Found family stories are one of my favorite tropes and this was really good. Great characters and plot paired with top notch narration.

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Another great Northcote story!

I love Jay’s Christmas stories! (Well I love all his stories but there’s something extra special about the Christmas ones!) I’m not sure if I’ve ever listened to a Mark Steadman narration but I adored it! His voice is lovely and he made the story even better with his narration!

Rudy and Zac were adorable together. Zac has never had a real family and Rudy has a great family. When a drunken night out with the work crew finds Rudy extending the invitation to Zac to join him for Christmas, they are both surprised when Zac accepts. What ensues over the next couple days is family hilarity and a whole lot of chemistry and connection. Zac lowers his walls and Rudy is able to get in and they find that they really want to carry on with a real relationship when they get back home. Zac learns what a real family is like and gets accepted almost immediately. It’s heart warming and just a wonderful cozy seriously good Christmas story. ❤️

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Perfect Christmas Audiobook to Enjoy!

A Family for Christmas was one of my earliest Jay Northcote books and I loved it! His books are wonderful especially his Christmas stories :) This was the first time listening to an audiobook narrated by Mark Steadman and I enjoyed his pleasant British voice. Very well-paced and lovely. Rudy is a shy guy who has a crush on his anti-social coworker, Zac, who shuns hanging out with the others at work. After too many drinks at their office Christmas party, Rudy invites Zach back to his flat and they spend the night together sleeping off their hangovers.

The next day Rudy finds out that Zac will be alone for Christmas so he invites him back to home to spend the holiday with his family. Zac has always been an outsider so he accepts the invitation with some awkwardness and uncomfortableness. He quickly discovers that Rudy's family is large, welcoming, loving, and very warm. After a misunderstanding, Rudy's mother believes they are dating and Zac agrees to go along with the pretense. Along the way, both guys find that they have crushes on the other and keep the farce going. Zac discovers that he does in fact deserve love and Rudy is more than ready to give him all the love he needs. Lovely, endearing, warm, and wonderful audiobook! I thoroughly enjoyed it and plan to listen over and over again :)


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Warm Christmas Feels

This story had an interesting premise where Zac enjoys a Christmas Holiday with Rudy, his co-worker. I am from the states and I love all things British. I enjoyed hearing about the meals and holiday games and even the drafty old farm house--but that was just wonderful window dressing to the overall story of 2 guys who saw themselves as misfits finding they truly enjoy one another and are not just attracted to the outside. Both characters explained a wonderful vulnerability for where they were coming from into this new potential relationship. This book definitely had hot moments as well--IMO made hotter because they were falling for each other. I noticed other reviewers mentioned an issue with the narrator and I just wanted to say that I had no notable issues with the narration of this book. I was very pleased--but then again, I could have just been seduced by the accident, Reading this at Christmas and with one of the main characters as Rudy who was a bit shy did remind me of Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer--but that is clearly just me because I have been listening to way too much Christmas music : )

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  • HMM
  • 01-01-19

The narrator distracted from the story

I liked the story, the characters and their inner turmoil but would have liked a lot more chapters. I could not realy enjoy the book because of the narrator who pauses after every four words. His voices were fine. I'd like to try more Northcote books but Steadman goes on my avoid list.

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  • Anna E.
  • 02-09-21

A wonderful Christmas tail!

What some Christmas cheer? Then this is the one for you! Very slight angst brought in by the boy’s themselves but a lovely story about overcoming your fears to get what you want.
Some hot parts too!

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  • DanNet
  • 01-02-21

Perfect Christmas story

This was a perfect Christmas story. It had sweet and vulnerable characters and the find something in each other. One is a shy virgin and the other hasn't known a warm family connection. They end up spending up spending Christmas together and falling in love. The narrator did a good job too.

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  • Pat Johnson
  • 12-24-20

Everyone needs a family.

I certainly enjoyed this audiobook .
I adored both men .
Rudy has a huge loving family always excepting of others kind ,considerate and loving ..
Zac , has no family no one to spend Christmas with until Rudy asks him to have Christmas with his family.
This is such a beautiful story of how Rudy and Zac make a friendship into more ...
Well written with wonderful characters ..
I adored the narration by Mark Steadman ..

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  • AliE
  • 12-17-20

Sterling

I love this seasonal story which is long enough to allow a real relationship to develop. Rudy and Zac begin a tentative friendship which sees trust grow, particularly in Zac. This then turns to love.

I enjoyed the hustle and bustle of a family Christmas with its moments of gentle humour (the game of Sardines!) and an atmosphere that lets Zac flourish. The introduction of a kitten into the mix is masterful.

Mark Steadman delivers his usual sterling performance with this narration. His choice of voices is similar to those in another audiobook I have listened to recently, but this didn't detract from my enjoyment.

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  • Rebekah
  • 12-15-20

Enjoyed

I enjoyed listening to this book as Zac gets to see a family all together. They both have insecurities as they plan spending time together at Christmas. It’s fun to watch sparks ignite.

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  • P. S. Johnson
  • 12-14-20

Colleagues to Lovers

I took a little while to get into loving the two main characters. Perhaps it was because Zac is shying away from friendships with every fibre of his being. He's been rejected by everyone in his life so he can't give his heart if it means another rejection down the line. Until we find out why this is he doesn't jump out of the story at me. Once the two boys get down to Rudy's parents' for Christmas the story really comes alive. You can feel Zac's apprehension about coping with a large gathering and Rudy's desire to be more than an office colleague. As usual Mark Steadman does a great job. A male narrator who can also handle female voices convincingly scores highly in my book. I would like a sequel to this so we know how life pans out for Zac and Rudy.

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  • kuroi-neko
  • 12-13-20

sweet Christmas novella

Short and sweet gay romance without much conflict. Just right to listen before Christmas.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Edga
  • 12-13-20

Christmas Romance.

A super sweet and romantic Christmas story. Both MCs are shy and insecure, however, Rudy is sweet and a true romantic, whilst Zac comes across as cool and standoffish. I liked how the two came together with the help of Rudy's family. I really enjoyed the story, all the things I love about Christmas were there.

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  • L.D.
  • 12-13-20

A Lovely Holiday Romance

A Family for Christmas is a standalone novella that is perfect the holiday season. Rudy has had a crush on his coworker, Zac, but does not know how to make the first move. A work party soon leads to Rudy inviting Zac to his family’s home for Christmas—cue the fake-dating-turning-into-a-real-relationship trope. The entire plot is centered around the developing relationship between Rudy and Zac and the personal growth each man experiences. There is some angst, but it is very low level and soon replaced by fluffy sweetness and cute romance. This is the perfect book to read with a cup of hot chocolate for a dose of holiday cheer.

The audiobook was narrated by Mark Steadman who does a great job. I really like Mark’s voice and thought he did a great job with the character voices. The audiobook production was well done and overall it was a really enjoyable listening experience.

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  • Alan
  • 12-15-20

Heartwarming and fun

Emboldened by tequila at a work Christmas drinks, a very shy Rudy tells the very solitary Zac of his crush for him. Too many drinks later, Zac agreed to spend Christmas with Rudy’s family. I loved everything about this, Jay has a knack for sketching vulnerable characters: while Rudy is shy, he has the support of a loving family which enables him to take a risk; having grown up in foster care, Zac has trouble believing anyone will stay so he is risk-averse. As usual, Jay Northcote has painted a very natural, fun family get-together without making it twee, revelling in the time spent over meals, chatting, and playing family games. The effect is heartwarming, romantic, and entirely believable. Mark Steadman provides excellent narration on the audiobook, giving the characters warmth and genuineness 🎧