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  • Hometown Christmas

  • By: Garrett Leigh
  • Narrated by: Dan Calley
  • Length: 4 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: Romance
  • 4.9 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)

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Summary

Can Yani and Gavin go from friends to lovers this Christmas? 

Yani Nicolaou is sworn off love for good. After fleeing a bad break-up in London, the only blood, sweat, and tears he has left are for his gyro stall at the Christmas market. Rebound fling? No thanks. He’s sticking to one-night-stands. 

Ex-army vet Gavin Richie has even less capacity for romance. Managing a homeless shelter while recovering from injury keeps him far too busy. So what if he’s often alone? He’s content being single, or so he thinks until a chance meeting lights a spark he can’t ignore. 

Yani is the warmth and affection Gavin hadn’t known he was missing. As Christmas lights up the city, their lives entwine in more ways than one. Falling for each other is easy. Holding on is harder, unless a hometown Christmas proves their love can last longer than the festive season. 

Hometown Christmas is a standalone MM Christmas novella.

©2019 Garrett Leigh (P)2020 Garrett Leigh

What listeners say about Hometown Christmas

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

Everything a Christmas story should be

This had every element I was looking for on my holiday read list with out being too over the top and eye roll. They were both closed off from the world but managed to connect somehow and their love bloomed from there. The story line was unique and the chemistry was evident. Great listen

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Hometown Christmas - great overall

What a wonderful Christmas read. It's a good story outside of the holiday elements. I love the characters and their issues and evolution together. The narrator did very well. I'd recommend it.

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Super

A great Christmas story by Garrett Leigh. Enjoyed the story and characters. Dan Calley did a fantastic job bringing the characters to live.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

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Excellent story, enhanced by a talented narrator

This is a perfect example of how a Christmas story should be. It is a reminder that we are more than the battles we fight inside ourselves, more than the physical scars we carry, and more than what we see of ourselves.

This was a beautiful story of two strong, yet vulnerable men. They’ve both closed themselves off from the world, in an effort to protect themselves. Yet, somehow they SEE each other. This is their journey towards love, love for themselves and for each other. They are complicated and messy, yet stubborn and loyal. Their journey involves a slow burn, but the chemistry is white hot. You can feel it through the page.

I love how Garrett Leigh writes a lot of stand alone books, yet still connects them to one or more of her previous books, or even sets things up for future books. I haven’t listened to the two other books that include Gavin, and only one of the books Yani is from. Some previous characters, from Gavin’s life, pop in for a visit. For those who’ve read/listened to them, it will be fun seeing them again. For those of us who haven’t, it may be just what we need to dive into the other books. I know I’m intrigued.

I read this book when it first came out in ebook format, and I loved it. I had no idea it was possible to love it more, it then it came in audiobook format....wow. Dan Calley is a very talented narrator, and he nailed it with this one. He did a great job bringing these guys to life with his narration.

This was a fun, low to medium angst, and well written story. I loved Gavin and Yani. How could you not?

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Highly recommended

I loved this story as a read. It's got a lovely Christmas vibe but it's not overly sweet. Set partially in a homeless shelter over Christmas it doesn't shy away from the reality of that situation, nor does it hide from the mental stresses of the MCs. But it didn't have the angst that can often be found in this author's books.

I love the way this author writes their MCs. Both guys have depth, and a past that makes them interesting. I loved Gavin especially.

The narrator does a great job.

Warning: Don't listen when hungry. I craved gyros and ginger cake while reading.

This book left me with a rumbling tummy and a huge smile.

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On the market for Love

The two men both have their own issues, Yanni has OCD and has left a bad relationship behind and Gavin is ex forces and has PTSD, as well as being medically discharged after breaking his neck. They might have never met if not for Yanni's best friend persuading him to volunteer some time cooking at the homeless shelter.
Dan Called did a great job doing the different accents and was a joy to listen to. Really enjoyed the story and it was easy to immerse myself into it.

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Wonderful Christmas romance

I started my Christmas reading for the year with this one as a e-book, now getting to listen to it performed by Dan Calley is perfection! The story of Yani and Gavin uses an age gape trope which I love and its characters are two men who have given up on love. Of course, they find it in a most unexpected place and the use of the homeless shelter and the food market as settings was perfect. Leeds is a nice change from the typical London setting and I want to know more about it.

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Wonderfully British; a beautiful story.

I read Hometown Christmas when it came out as an ebook a year ago and I loved it. Some of the comments I made at that time don’t exactly apply to the audiobook but I still think they’re pertinent. I love books that challenge me in different ways. Hometown Christmas is one of those books. It has a lot of new-to-me British terms/slang and I loved it. I will admit, though, that I'm very happy I first read it on a device that makes it super easy to look stuff up while I'm reading. While I got the gist of most words as they were used in context during the story, I love being able to really know what a particular term means.

It's kind of funny, I didn't really think of this so much as a Christmas story. Christmas is there but not until near the end of the book and that was fine with me. The story is more about two men, kind of broken in different ways, coming together and creating a relationship that worked for them.

Gavin is former military, discharged due to a serious injury, and he can't talk about a lot of his life. Yani is a cook who has his own stall in a market where he sells Greek food. He has OCD and has to fight to keep it from controlling him.

Both Gavin and Yani are a bit gun shy when it comes to relationships. They first get together as a one-off then become friends. Because of his last failed relationship, it takes Yani a bit of time to accept the fact that what he and Gavin have is more than just a fling. Gavin's infinite patience, and understanding of Yani's OCD, pays off and Yani finally accepts that he's in love with Gavin.

Dan Calley did another great job with his performance of this story and I know I’ll be listening to more books that he performs.

A complimentary copy of this audiobook was provided to me but my review was voluntary and not influenced by the author and/or narrator.

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Will they find love in time for Christmas?

I’m not a huge Christmas fan but a really good holiday romance has been known to put me in the mood. This was one of those books. Probably because Yani has sworn off love. He’s got a stall at the local market where he sells Greek food and he’s popular. He’s got friends and acquaintances and has no need for anyone else. Then he meets Gavin. Gavin who is even less looking for love. He’s recently out of the military with a whole bunch of problems and has taken a job at a homeless shelter. Helping the less fortunate. But when they are short a cook one night, Yani comes to the rescue.

Suddenly both men are facing someone they can be attracted to. Someone they might want to hook-up with. Someone to occupy their time before Christmas arrives.

Except hooking up isn’t enough. They like spending time with each other. They’re there to support each other – Yani as he faces the loneliness of not being with his family and Gavin as he deals with what he endured in the military. When one is imperiled, the other is there to rescue. In the process, they realize they’ve become more than just f-buddies.

So this is a Garrett Leigh book and there are characters with mental illnesses but they the illnesses don’t define them. It just is. I like that about her writing. Real characters who could be people I know in my life. My only complaint is the men are smokers. And I get that it’s an addiction and it might suit the characters but, in this day and age, it just hits me the wrong way. I want these characters to have nice healthy long lives. Just sayin’

Another great book narrated by the wonderful Dan Calley. He and Ms. Leigh make magic and it makes me almost – almost – get into the Christmas spirit. Well done.

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Yanni and Gavin

Sweet listen Garrett and Dan make a great combination. Gavin is Ex Army needing help with a Cook to feed the homeless, in comes Yanni to help. They had ran into each other a few days before and had sized up the other, so they never thought they would see each other let alone form a beautiful relationship.

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Profile Image for RACHEL REED
  • RACHEL REED
  • 27-12-20

An adorable hurt/comfort holiday romance!

This was a cute Holiday romance.
I loved that it was set during Christmas but there wasn't too much focus put on the Holidays.
I absolutely adored Yani and Gavin.
The chemistry between them was intense and instant and I come help rooting for them.
Dan Calley performed an amazing audio delivery as well.

2 people found this helpful

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  • MagicalAM
  • 13-12-20

Short and sweet

This story has some great Christmas themes while not really being about Christmas. It takes place during the season, but the holiday is not directly referenced often. But much of the book takes place at a homeless shelter and the story focuses on the characters' joint commitment to helping others in need, while they both need help in their own lives. The best part is that the author doesn't hit you in the face with these themes, but they are subtle in how they are presented through the characters actions. There is great dialog between the MCs though a few times it was hard (as an American) to understand the accents, but it was not often and didn't detract from the overall listen. It is definitely not a light-hearted holiday tale, but it is a sweet and sexy story about two interesting characters.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Shin Mon Thway
  • 29-12-20

Feel good in the heart and soul my love


A love story set in lovely Northern England, it has all the Christmas feels and warm, gooey feelings! My kind of a holiday story with two very likeable men. Garret Leigh has done it again to make me feel all the feels.

Two imperfect men finding for their perfect match in Leeds in northern England. It was such a feel-good love story. I loooooove the markets set up in the town. I also love how they go back to their hometown and finding true love there. I also really love really yummy and delicious sounding foods in this novel. It makes me wanna eat all those goodies. And I also love how these two boys are related to author’s other stories and the glimpses of characters from other stories. Their friends are the greatest. Dan Calley also did a great job with his performance. All in all, this is a perfect audio to curl up and listen in bed while sipping a cup of tea in the cold winter. Loved it to the moon and back.

4.5 Feel good in the heart and soul my love stars
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫



Audio rating

Story - 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Narration - 4.5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫
Performance - 4 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Overall - 4.5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

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  • Samantha Cato
  • 28-12-20

Very enjoyable!

Loved this sweet story from Garrett Leigh! It was very well written and had wonderful main characters! This is great if you are wanting a shorter book to listen to. Dan Calley did a great job narrating this one.

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Profile Image for Troy
  • Troy
  • 27-12-20

So amazing

Garrett Leigh writes damaged characters so well. This story totally rocked. Great narration too. 😊

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Texas Native
  • 27-12-20

Wonderful

What a sweet story. Gavin and Yani weren't looking for love, but they found it. Very accepting men not trying to fix the other. I also thought the narrator did an amazing job. I could listen to him talk all day. I look forward to listening to more books narrorated by him.

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  • Janet L Hunt
  • 26-12-20

Wow! Fantastic!

This was excellent! Loved Yani and Gavin! Ya I is dealing with OCD and Gavin with PTSD, you’d think they’d be a mess but they were perfect for each other! Dan Calley, as always does a fantastic job with the narration!

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  • Reading*Renee
  • 26-12-20

Christmas-Lite Character-Driven Hurt/Comfort Story

I'm a big fan of friends-to-lovers and holiday romances, but "Hometown Christmas" isn't really either so much as a character-driven hurt/comfort story between acquaintances-turned-lovers that coincidentally occurs around Christmastime. Yani and Gavin are interesting, complex characters actively dealing with mental health issues, with military veteran Gavin also adjusting to civilian life, and there's a real-life believability to them and their deepening connection and loving concern for one another. Still, the story never fully clicked for me, some of which may be down to it being a bit more angsty and less Christmassy a story than anticipated given the book blurb. Dan Calley is a new-to-me narrator and I enjoyed his performance and varied British accents. I received this free review copy audio book by request and have left this honest review voluntarily.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Kathryn M
  • Kathryn M
  • 25-12-20

Sweet

Hometown Christmas by Garrett Leigh is a contemporary holiday M/M romance. Yani and Gavin's lovestory is one of instant attraction, sweet connection,  and sexy interaction.  There is hurt and comfort and some big emotion and topics in these pages.  I found the story well written, entertaining,  and enjoyable...with characters that maybe flawed but are for sure endearing.  Dan Calley does a great job as Narrator and it is a fantastic performance of voicework and clear recording work.  Very enjoyable listen.

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  • Blackmermaid
  • 24-12-20

Great Book to Listen to in December

Despite the title, it's not necessarily a Christmas story. I enjoyed it regardless.

I enjoyed the characters and I liked that they weren't "perfect". Their relationship is realistic. The narrator did a good job.