Rating: 4 stars
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Aiden is just your average blue collar guy. He’s a construction worker who doesn’t really do one night stands as a rule, but finds himself unable to turn down the gorgeous guy offering up a blow job in his favorite pub late one night. After the man gets off his knees, he asks Aiden to come back to his for more fun and Aiden follows along, much to his surprise. It is there that reality finally comes crashing down when Tom`s mother surprises the two of them and Aiden discovers two things: Tom is only eighteen and he is rich—very rich. Since Aiden is in his thirties and barely making ends meet, those two facts send him running.
But Aiden can’t forget the sad-eyed boy who has gotten under his skin and, despite his better judgment, he meets with Tom again and they begin a relationship that quickly escalates for both of them. However, Tom soon finds out some news that threatens to derail everything between them.
Christmas Riches is a sensitive and emotionally written holiday story featuring an age-gap romance that is both realistic and intensely moving. Tom may be wealthy, but his life has been far from happy, and the gilded cage he lives in has never sat comfortably on his very young shoulders. Tom is one of those characters you might hear described as “old beyond his years.” He has toyed with drugs, alcohol, and the fast life that left his soul empty and his so called “friends” nowhere to be found after he decided to stop the endless partying.
H.L. Day describes Tom with such authenticity, one cannot help but feel for the young man as he clings to the hope of one day finding someone who will really see him and love him just for himself and not for the money or prestige he can bring to the equation. Aiden is just that man; he is caring and gentle. He quickly becomes invested in seeing Tom smile—really smile so that his eyes light up and his whole demeanor changes. Poor Aiden falls hard and when the foundation is pulled out from under him and Tom, it’s Aiden who suffers the most.
Because Tom has been pushed aside by his parents and forced to mature faster than most his age, it is actually very realistic that he and Aiden become a couple despite the many years difference. Tom sparks something deep in Aiden, something he’s never had before, and it’s that and not the sex that cements the deal for the older man. Theirs was a lovely coupling to watch unfold and grow.
Christmas Riches is a lovely story, one filled with hope and healing just as the holidays should be for all who have been looking for love for so long.