Manny Rodriguez had transferred from a community college in Florida to Appalachian Christian College in the mountains. He has considerable doubts about the transfer, but he felt led to make the change. And what he’s found so far is a bit of antagonism against Hispanics and an almost-hostile single mother, aiming her almost-hostility right at him, attending the school. A woman with a bany and no husband attending a Christian school?
Jessica Saltare flares into instant defensiveness whenever she sees or runs into Manny Rodriguez. He’s several years older, and he is a vivid reminder of the man who raped her, her mother’s boyfriend who happened to be Hispanic.
What eventually brings them together is a college Christmas program, to help raise money to replace a stolen nativity scene. Manny suggests a Latino Christmas like he knows at home in Florida. He even has a recipe for tamales.
A Tamale Christmas is a novella by Linda Rodante, using the same college setting and some of the same characters from several books in the Dangerous Series of Christian romantic suspense novels. The series currently includes seven books: Amber Alert, As Long as You Both Shall Live, Splashdown, Looking for Justice, Honor Respect Devotion, Pursued, and Warrior. Rodante has worked with both crisis pregnancy centers and anti-trafficking groups, and that experience infuses her fiction. She lives in Tennessee.
It’s a story of two dissimilar people who at first struggle to understand each other, until they gradually look beyond surface appearances. And when that happens, love can’t be far behind.