From the sharp mind that brought us the best romance novel of 2023, Forever Your Rogue, comes Some Winter’s Evening by Erin Langston—another remarkable, beautifully warm gem to add to our collection. Now, Langston has a story we can revisit during every season, which is especially perfect for seasonal mood readers. Nevertheless, this story is something else entirely. It’s for the softies and the souls who are a bit broken, trying to make the best of their situations. It’s for the ones working themselves to the bone, never asking for help, never taking anything from others. We all imagined that Gavin Sinclair’s story would hit like a ton of bricks, but surely none of us had it in our bingo cards that it’d hit this hard. (Though, really, what are we to expect from Langston at this point? She’s here to ruin us all in the best way.)
Emilia Davis and Gavin Sinclair’s love story is on the quicker side of things, similar to Raymond and Rosalie’s in A Day Until Forever. Still, even though it’s a novella, it never feels rushed or unearned. Something tends to happen when people are given the safe space to be themselves outside their homes or places of comfort. Thereby, between the frenzied yet perfectly apt meet-cute that I, for one, wasn’t expecting, to the wholesome dance and sweet, dazzling kisses, their love story feels profound right from the beginning.
Some Winter’s Evening by Erin Langston is the perfect Christmas novella for how it encapsulates the longings many feel around the holidays. The places they’re trying to find, the layers they’re trying to shed, the warmth they’re searching for—all of it. And, perhaps, more importantly, the simple yet profound desires to merely be regarded. In each of her stories, countless moments stick out to the reader, which will likely differ depending on inner emotions, personality types, and so forth. There’s a good storm of glowing moments in Some Winter’s Evening, but this writer needs to wax poetics about: “The thoughtless disregard of others was imprinted beneath her skin.”
My heart ached tremendously for Emilia, and then it ached for myself, and it ached for every single person who’s yet to find the Gavin Sinclair to ensure that people who give and give and give are taken care of, too. While this is a winter’s novella, which gorgeously paints scenic descriptions that are warm and bright, Emilia Davis is a folklore “august” girlie—to live for the hope of it all. Her optimism, shining kindness, and endearing warmth made the entire novel feel like an unexpected little gift. The present you unwrap when you aren’t expecting one, understanding at that moment that there are indeed people who care. There’s so much about Emilia that the small quote underscores, revealing eons of aches and desires that many people—readers and Gavin—could relate to. Yet, with Gavin, she’s out of the shadows, seen in every way possible, no part of her tucked away.
How Erin Langston takes the idea of a dollhouse and slowly turns it into the reality of two pegs for coats and a man waiting to keep her warm and treasured is precisely how a great writer honors her characters through meticulous attention. The repetition, the small corridors we hear about, the tension that builds around these desires, and the reality that we see come to pass makes Some Winter’s Evening by Erin Langston feel like the bright, warming fireplace burning on Christmas day. All is right. There’s gratitude in the air, a safe place to fall, and an ink-stained soft hand to hold onto.
And that’s just it—this is a story about coming home and finding the one person who makes every aching day worthwhile and healing. A partner doesn’t cure anxiety magically or change a person’s character, but day by day, they make them feel less alone and treasured. Emilia does this for Gavin the moment she meets him, and he does everything in his power to keep her loneliness at bay. Two soft souls loving each other and fighting for one another ensure they challenge each other to continue doing the right thing, even when it’s difficult.
Further, as much as this is a cozy Christmas tale, Langston also includes yet another prominent court case to highlight the perils of the time—this time, it’s surrounding governesses, loneliness, and injustices. Between the gripping plot and the soft and simultaneously steamy romance, the story comes to life in a crystalizing fall that sticks. These snowflakes aren’t fleeting; they’re staying, bringing to the world another memorable romance that results in an intimately touching achievement that ensures lost souls find a safe place to call home.
Some Winter’s Evening by Erin Langston is for the anxious, restless souls wanting a break. It’s for the people who are tirelessly in their heads about what they want to achieve, giving 110% to everything even while they crumble in the process. It’s for the people who dream of simple things, and it’s for the people who love with all their might—tenderly and passionately. It’s a must-read holiday novella, brimming with stunning imagery, thoughtful characterizations, fantastic cameos from the Travers family, and a delicately endearing love story.
Some Winter’s Evening by Erin Langston will be available on Kindle Unlimited on Nov. 1 and available for purchase.