Review: Faking Under the Mistletoe by Ashley Shepherd


Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Title: Faking Under the Mistletoe
Author: Ashley Shepherd
Genre: Holiday Romance
Audience: Adult
Format: ebook
Length: 327 pages
Publisher: Independently published
Release Date: November 8, 2019
Source: Personal collection
Recommended for fans of: fake dating, enemies to lovers, Christmas romances that don’t suck!
Content Warnings: sexual harassment, sexual assault


Olivia Langley is the human embodiment of Christmas cheer, and she has absolutely no problem spreading it around for all to hear.

Christmas sweaters? She has twenty. Christmas cookies? She’ll take three dozen. Christmas movies? Yeah, she’s seen them all.

So it’s no surprise when she’s put in charge of Loveridge & McGowan’s holiday festivities. Secret Santas? Yep. Ice skating? Of course. Holiday trivia? Duh. Christmas-themed bar crawl? That’s one big jingle bell hell yes.

Kissing her boss at a Christmas tree lighting in front of his ex-girlfriend? Well… it is the season of giving.

And Olivia does not come with a gift receipt. No exchanges. No returns. No refunds. All sales are final.

In an effort to ungrinch the grinchiest man she’s ever met, Olivia enlists herself, Santa’s Executive Helper, to scheme up a plan that includes sleigh rides, snow days, and one too many mistletoe kisses, which certainly gets Asher’s tinsel in a tangle.

She’s pretty sure that she sleighed this whole fake dating thing.

Well… until she realizes there’s nothing fake about her feelings for Asher, and suddenly tangled tinsel, unsolicited Christmas trees, and celebrity heartthrobs are the least of her worries.


When it comes to holiday romances, I am a bit of a Grinch. The cheesy predictability that works so well in a 90-minute Hallmark just isn’t enough for the time commitment of reading 250+ pages. HOWEVER, Faking Under the Mistletoe has depth and all my favorite elements of contemporary romance novels PLUS a heaping serving of holiday cheer!

Enemies to lovers is my favorite romance trope, and I have recently developed an appreciation for fake dating. This book has BOTH! The dynamic between Olivia and Asher is spot on, full of banter, sexual tension, and HILARIOUS antics.

This book also addressed serious topics like the harassment of young women by men in positions of power, particularly in the entertainment industry. Shepherd addressed this issue in a respectful and empowering way while maintaining the light, humorous tone of the book.

I absolutely recommend you pick up this book around the holiday season. It’s not just a good Christmas romance, it’s a good contemporary romance in general!

Author: Caroline | Carolibrary

Hello! I’m Caroline! I am a teacher, a book lover, and a nerd. My passions include reading, writing, bookstagram, barre & yoga, baking, binging TV shows, and Star Wars. I love stories in all formats because they can transport you to a different world while helping you understand the world around you. I have always found books to be a particularly magical source of imagination.

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