I love holiday books, and Red Velvet Crinkles and Christmas Sprinkles was a quick read and a nice break from my hectic day of work, preparing my mind for the upcoming holiday season. 


About The Book

Christmas Cookies: Book 1
Publication Date: November 2, 2021

Competitive, work-obsessed Bella Simonetti has just been fired from her high-paying job at a Manhattan law firm. At an all-time low, she returns home and helps her parents at their small-town gift shop, but the business is failing and may not make it past the Christmas holidays.

Successful landscape architect Dean Jackson is like a son to Bella’s parents. But he’s a persistent annoyance to her—he seems to have forgotten his unforgivable blunder thirteen years earlier.

When Bella transforms her parents’ gift shop into a cookie cottage, Dean’s generosity and magnetic smile are hard to resist, and those feelings of unrequited adolescent love come rushing back. But can Bella let go of the past and accept Dean for the man he is today?



The Review

Red Velvet Crinkles and Christmas Sprinkles by Maria Imbalzano is a book in the Christmas Cookies series with books written by different authors, each having a different cookie being essential to the story. 

At only eighty-one pages, it was a quick read filled with lots of Christmas details along with the shop run by Bella’s parents front and center. 

When Bella returns home after being fired by the law firm she worked for in New York City, she’s at loose ends and keeping secrets. Her parents welcome her back, and her mom is looking forward to Bella’s help in the family’s shop. But the family has secrets too concerning how well the shop is doing financially. 

Her brother’s friend Dean is always underfoot since he’s like a surrogate son to her parents. He and Bella have a history, and while Dean seems to want to know her better, Bella remembers some of his actions in high school and is not at all pleased to have him around.

The story has a nice flow and beautiful descriptions. As secrets unfold and Bella’s parents accept her help, Bella also receives help from Dean, and things get on a more even keel. 

There are some hard realities to swallow and lots of discussions, compromises, and attention to detail. I liked how Bella’s ideas were listened to and some implemented. When Bella and Dean decide to communicate, things turn more playful with a hint of romance. They complement each other well, and when Bella keeps an open mind, who knows what could be in her future. 

Christmas envelops us, and it is nice to learn of some of Bella’s family traditions. There is a happily ever after in the offing and some closure, but an epilogue would have rounded out the story nicely. 

I love holiday books, and Red Velvet Crinkles and Christmas Sprinkles was a quick read and a nice break from my hectic day of work, preparing my mind for the upcoming holiday season. 

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About The Author

Maria Imbalzano is a retired matrimonial lawyer who now writes full-time. Instead of drafting motions, legal memoranda, and briefs, although fascinating, she now spends her days creating memorable characters and taking them on their emotional journeys through her contemporary romance novels.

Her novel, “Unchained Memories,” won the Wisconsin Romance Writers Write Touch Readers’ Award and the ACRA Readers’ Choice Heart of Excellence Award. “Sworn to Forget,” the first of the four-book Sworn Sisters Series was a finalist for the illustrious RONE award as well as the Book Buyers Best Award. Her novellas, “The Blueberry Swirl Waltz” and “A Song For Another Day” each came in first in their category in the National Excellence in Story Telling contest.


Blog Tour Schedule

November 1:
1: Stormy Nights Reviewing & Bloggin’
2: Sea’s Nod
3: The Obsessed Reader
4: Locks, Hooks and Books
5: Aubrey Wynne: Timeless Love
6: The Key Of Love
7: Booklover-Sue
8: Words of Wisdom from The Scarf Princess

November 2:
1: Andi’s Book Reviews
2: Read Your Writes Book Reviews
3: Romance Novel Giveaways
4: Wendi Zwaduk – Romance to Make Your Heart Race
5: Bibliomanaic Aza
6: Tina Donahue Books – Heat with Heart
7: The Pen and Muse Book Reviews

November 3 :
1: Long and Short Reviews
2: What Is That Book About
3: Our Town Book Reviews review
4: Fabulous and Brunette
5: The Avid Reader
6: Westveil Publishing

November 4:
1: The Faerie Review
2: Literary Gold
3: All the Ups and Downs
4: Hope. Dreams. Life… Love
5: Iron Canuck Reviews & More
6: Harlie’s Books review
7: Coffee and Wander Book Reviews review
8: Notes From a Romantic’s Heart
9: Lynn’s Romance Enthusiasm
10: Girl with Pen

November 5:
1: Novels Alive review
2: Momma Says: To Read or Not to Read
3: Eye-Rolling Demigod’s Book Blog review
4: Maggie Blackbird review
5: Christine Young
6: So Many Books
7: Gina Rae Mitchell
8: Wake Up Your Wild Side
9: Sandra’s Book Club review


JoAnne Weiss, nee Montalbano, was born and raised in NYC until moving to CT with her family when she was 16 and she's never left. Married for 41 years with one grown son, she works in an elementary school office where she's been since it opened in 2003. Prior to that, she was an accountant in several corporations before becoming a stay at home mom for 12 years. JoAnne enjoys reading, traveling, spending time with her family, and extended family as well as with friends. She enjoys cooking and rarely uses a recipe the way it was intended but instead uses them and cooking shows to give her new ideas and suggestions. JoAnne has a huge bucket list of places she'd like to visit but has been lucky enough to travel to England, Italy, the Caribbean, Mexico, Canada, and many states in the U.S. including Hawaii, California, Nevada, Arizona, and Maine among others. Some of JoAnne's favorite genres include contemporary romance, chick-lit, romantic suspense, and historical romances including regency and those set in the west. JoAnne is on several author's street teams and enjoys interacting with many of them on Facebook as well as reading their newsletters. She has been lucky enough to meet some of her favorite authors among them Susan Mallery, Debbie Macomber, Nora Roberts, Meg Tilly, Beatriz Williams, and Marie Bostwick. JoAnne took a road trip with her sister in the fall of 2019 and visited Nora Roberts' bookstore in Boonsboro, Maryland for an authors' signing. She hopes to do more of this in the future. JoAnne leaves reviews for all books she reads on Goodreads and her reviews can be found at JoAnne currently reviews for - and which is on hiatus. Previously she reviewed for which has since closed. Payment is in the form of receiving free books to read and review. Her mantra is too many books and not enough time!



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I love holiday books, and Red Velvet Crinkles and Christmas Sprinkles was a quick read and a nice break from my hectic day of work, preparing my mind for the upcoming holiday season. 4-STAR REVIEW: RED VELVET CRINKLES AND CHRISTMAS SPRINKLES by Maria Imbalzano