The Snowman’s Sweetheart


I can’t speak for other authors, but one of my favorite things about starting a new book series is developing the setting, especially if it involves a quirky small town.

When I began working on ideas for my new Winter Wishes series, I used inspiration from two very different towns, and combined them into one fictional place called Pinehill, Oregon. If Pinehill did exist, it would be high up in the mountains, just a few miles from Mount Hood and a winter playground of skiing, sledding, and the like.


Way back, when Captain Cavedweller and I were in the first weeks of dating, he asked me if I’d like to go to the Winter Carnival in McCall, Idaho. I’d never attended the event, and it sounded like fun. Even if it hadn’t, I would have gladly gone because it meant I got to spend the day with the very cute boy who had already captured my interest.

The event features, among many things, incredible carvings created from snow. We made the hours-long drive and arrived in McCall mid-morning to discover the temperatures hovering just above the zero mark. Not only that, but we couldn’t find anywhere to park. We drove around for almost an hour trying to find anywhere to park. Finally giving up, CC drove back out of town, and we parked on the side of the road (like hundreds of other crazy people), then had to hike back into town.  It seemed like we’d parked ten miles away, although it was probably closer to a half-mile, as we trudged through the frigid temps. We finally got back into town and had such a great time looking at the snow carvings. If you’ve never seen a snow carving, Google it. They are incredible works of art!

I can’t image the talent and patience it would take to create something like this.

Or this!

The detail just boggles my mind! The use blocks of compressed snow to make the carvings and the tools are as varied as the artists.

Anyway, that freezing, fun day with CC has stayed with me all these years.

A few years ago, he came up with the idea to attend another winter festival in a town about six hours away where they would have ice carvings, sleigh rides, and a variety of winter festivities.

In theory, it sounded like a fabulous weekend getaway. In reality… boy did it get off to a rough start!

The roads were horrible getting there, the hotels were packed, and the one where we’d made a reservation somehow overbooked and didn’t have a room for us. We thought about going elsewhere, but there wasn’t a room to be had anywhere in town. The hotel finally found a room for us, next to the noisiest elevator in the northern hemisphere. From the window, we watched an inexperienced driver almost take out our pickup in the slick parking lot, and the craziness escalated from there.

That morning, it had warmed up enough to rain (pouring buckets it seemed) on top of inches of snow, creating an ankle deep mess that was akin to walking through a lake of slushies. It was impossible to take more than a few steps and not have your pants soaked, even if you had arrived with adequate boots. Every step anyone else took splattered the frigid goop everywhere. After sloshing through the slush (and watching crazy people in shorts and flip-flops make their way through the mess) for a mediocre yet overpriced dinner where we sat a rickety table by the drafty door, near enough to the restroom that it made me lose my appetite, and an accordion playing octogenarian made conversation impossible.

Once we made it back to our room where I sat shivering with my feet propped on top of the wall heater, wondering what we’d gotten ourselves into, we decided we had to figure out a way to salvage the weekend or go home.

Thankfully, that night, it froze and then snowed, creating a beautiful world of white the next morning. It made it much easier to get around, and we ended up having a lot of fun, even if the town was packed to the gills.

So that experience gave me even more inspiration for Pinehill, as well as the heroine in the first book in the series, The Snowman’s Sweetheart. It releases January 27!

Due to a bad breakup right before Christmas, Sierra Goodwin detests everything to do with the holidays and winter. Then her best friend talks her into coming to Pinehill for a girls’ weekend getaway. They have reservations at a luxury hotel, and spa appointments. Sierra intends to stay inside where it’s cozy and do nothing but relax.

What could go wrong?

Among the many things that make her wonder if she’s lost her mind agreeing to come on the trip, she runs into Kylan Snow, better known around the community of Pinehill as Mr. Snowman. He owns the local Christmas tree farm, has been in charge of the community snowman building contest for years, and is the chair of the Winter Fest.

Talk about opposites attract!

Just for fun, here’s a little excerpt from the story:

As they reached the parking garage, Sierra followed Jenn over to her parking space, only to find Rob Kohl, Jenn’s boyfriend, waiting for them in his SUV.

“Hey, Sierra!” he said, hopping out and opening the back of the vehicle. “Isn’t this great?”

Sierra scowled at Jenn, furious she’d invited her boyfriend to join them for a weekend they’d been planning for months. “What, exactly, is going on?”

“Rob got time off from work, too, and is joining us,” Jenn said, practically squealing with joy.

Sierra had visions of spending the entire trip watching Jenn and Rob making lovey-dovey eyes and kissy-faces to each other. Although they were always good to include her in activities, she often felt like an unwanted third wheel when she was around them. She certainly didn’t need to feel that way on a vacation that was supposed to be a time for her and Jenn to relax and have fun.

She tossed the interloper a blistering scowl. “I’ll stay home. You two go.” She started backing away from the vehicle.

“No! You’re going!”


Will a whirlwind winter romance result in a forever love?

After a Christmas Eve catastrophe that left her heart encased in ice, Sierra Goodwin detests anything to do with winter and the holiday season. To take her mind off her troubles, her best friend talks her into a weekend spa getaway to a town she’s never heard of. Her bestie’s boyfriend tags along like a bumpy third wheel, and things go from bad to worse when they arrive in town to find a winter fest in full swing. Then Sierra runs into a handsome stranger, a man everyone calls Mr. Snowman, and discovers her heart might not be a frozen fortress after all.

Kylan Snow loves his life, his Christmas tree farm, and the town of Pinehill where he was raised. There’s nothing he enjoys more than a beautiful winter afternoon spent outside in the crisp, fresh air, or time spent with friends and family. When he unexpectedly encounters a dimple-cheeked woman in need of a little hope, he has no idea one weekend with her with completely alter his world.

Will their winter wishes for a forever sweetheart come true? Find out in this sweet romance brimming with laughter, snowmen, small-town charm, and love.

Don’t miss out on this sweet winter romance full of wintery fun! Pre-order your copy today!

Amazon |  Apple |  Barnes & NobleKobo

What about you?

Have you ever attended a winter festival?

Are you a fan of winter and cold weather? Or do you prefer sunshine and warmer temperatures? 

Post your answer for a chance to win a mystery prize!

Giveaway open until 5 p.m. Pacific Time January 19, 2022




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After spending her formative years on a farm in Eastern Oregon, hopeless romantic Shanna Hatfield turns her rural experiences into sweet historical and contemporary romances filled with sarcasm, humor, and hunky western heroes.
When this USA Today bestselling author isn’t writing or covertly hiding decadent chocolate from the other occupants of her home, Shanna hangs out with her beloved husband, Captain Cavedweller.

95 thoughts on “The Snowman’s Sweetheart”

  1. I haven’t been to a winter-themed festival. They had one nearby last weekend and it looked fun.

    I enjoy colder weather over the heat of summer.

  2. I would love to attend a winter festival. And thhere are ice caves southhh of hhere I thhink and on my bucket list to visit.

    • That’s so neat about the ice caves. Makes me shiver just thinking about going there – but I bet they’d be so fun to see! Thank you for stopping in today, Sabrina! Happy January!

      • If you’re ever down tis way I thhink it’s in the town Midland. hhAPPY JANUARY TO YOU TOOOOO SHANNA

  3. Shanna- You are the Queen at making me laugh. I pictured Mr. CC and you trudging through the sloppy mess and others splashing your clothes into an unrecognizable mess.
    Stories like that are what makes the best memories.
    But all jokes aside, those snow sculptures are incredible. I just can’t imagine having that type of talent.
    Your book sounds wonderful, it’s my next to read.
    I’ve never attended a winter festival before, but I did go down to San Antonio when I was younger and attended a German festival that was so much fun. The music, food, and dancing the German community put on was fabulous. I was probably about 15 years old, but it stuck with me forever.
    Have a great day, as I type this our winds are picking up outside and snow is coming. We need the moisture so bad here on the Kansas Plains, it will be a welcomed sight.

    • Those crazy stories do make the best memories! I’m glad I could give you a chuckle today! That’s so neat about going to the German festival. I bet you had a blast! Stay warm today, and safe! And thank you for stopping in, Tonya. Love and hugs, my friend!

  4. No but I attended the iowa state fair were they make carving out of butter. I have seen ice carvings. They did it here in Lincoln Nebraska Almost a year ago when we got 16 to 18 inches of snow fun to see. Interesting carving packed snow.

  5. There is a winter festival in my hometown in Holland, Mich that has beautiful ice sculptures. I haven’t been back in a while but I love it.

  6. I am not a fan of winter weather, especially now as I get older! This is an awesome start to her new series – a MUST READ!!

  7. Oh Shanna you started my day with a chuckle because I’ve been there in that snow /slush to many times . I LOVE snow, the beauty of the trees and landscapes after a snow is like winter wonderland. Living in Illinois and going to Michigan your going to see a lot of snow and unfortunately ice. Im not fond of driving and falling on the ice !! I’ve seen Ice Sculptures but never been to a winter wonderland Ice show, that would be so beautiful!!!

    • Hi Rose Ann! Thank you for popping in today! I love the beauty of a winter wonderland – as long as I am inside where its warm! I don’t like driving on the ice and definitely not falling on it. I hope you get to see some snow carvings someday! They are fantastic!

  8. Good morning. Great blog. I can’t wait to read this book. Next! I’ve never been to a winter festival but I’d love to see snow sculptures! These pics are amazing and I can’t even think of ever seeing any before. Ice sculptures, yes, but snow sculptures no. I love winter because I’m heat intolerant due to my MS. I’ve begun to notice that I’m starting to also get the cold intolerance that many MSers suffer from too, though and I never thought that would happen. I think #Snovid2020, #TexasWinterstorm2020 broke me. Lol I love snow but I’m afraid of snow & ice now because I have a hard time getting up off the ground due to MS leg weakness, lack of stamina & hardware in my left ankle that causes me to not be able to bend my ankle in the position needed to get up off the floor. If I fell on ice or snow, my big MS butt would just have to lay there until a thaw!! ??????

    • Hi Stephanie! Oh, sorry about the MS causing issues with both heat and cold. That’s rough. And yes, the snow sculptures are so incredible. I hope someday you get to see some. So excited you are anxious to read the book. Yay! I hope you enjoy it! Take good care and thanks for stopping in today! <3

  9. Those snow sculptures are INCREDIBLE! I’m such a wimp when it comes to cold, though, I don’t know if I would have survived your experience. Your new book looks fabulous, Shanna. And your cover is just adorable! So fun. 🙂

  10. I haven’t been to a winter festival but I love winter and snow! Each year my husband and I pray for more snow.

  11. When I lived in the Great White North i went to a winter festival in Quebec City. I was young and loved the experience since winter was a season that was enjoyed. Now I love summer and the warmth.

  12. I’m a Native Floridian, and I’ve yet to see snow! I went to TX for Christmas last year, and while they had a White Christmas in 2020, they did NOT get any snow until AFTER I came home for 2021! I do prefer cooler temps at Christmas, though, and I did have those the past two years! We’re chilly now for FL, with temps the last few days only getting into the 60’s for the highs. Today thru Friday we’re to be back in the 70’s, then this weekend another cold front comes in and cools us off again.

    • Hi Trudy,
      Well, I hope you someday get to see snow! I’m sorry you missed it when you were in Texas. Your “cool” weather sounds like a heat wave compared to our chilly temps. Stay warm and enjoy some sunshine for me!

  13. I never did attend a winter carnival. Winter is not for me since I suffer from the cold and damp. I need heat and sunshine.

  14. WOW! Those snow sculptures are really incredible. Those people have a lot of talent. I’ve never been to a winter festival but I would dearly love to go. What fun! And I love tramping around in the snow. What an interesting post. This new series has hooked me. Who can resist a hero named Mr. Snowman!! 🙂

    • Oh, thank you, Linda! The snow carvings are just amazing. So fun you like to tramp around in the snow. I’m good in the snow for about five minutes, then I’m ready to get inside where it’s warm!

  15. I’ve never been to a winter festival. We did go to Dollywood one year and nearly froze. I don’t remember the temperature, but they said it had never been that cold there before. It was miserable – teeth chattering and numb.

    I love the snow, but now that I’m older prefer just watching it from inside and eating snow ice cream. I do miss having a snowman in the yard though.

  16. Shanna, Shanna, Shanna. You need to patent your brain. There is nothing like it!

    Your creativity and whimsy are just so charming and delightful. I fell in love with the title as soon as I saw it. The series will be a big success for you.

    Living in the Midwest, I’m used to snow, but I have never seen such stunning snow sculptures! How stressful for the artist, though – a spike in temperatures, and his/her artistry melts away!!

    Wishing you many sales, my friend.

    • Oh, you make me smile, Pam! Patent my brain! Oh, my goodness! That would be scary! LOL!
      Thank you for your kind words. And I agree – the weather could be friend or foe to the carvers.
      Thanks again!

  17. never been to a winter fest but I love cold weather, I live in South Texas so we very rarely get really cold winters but I take advantage of every little cold front we get to bundle up and drink hot chocolate while reading a great book. Shanna, I loved the snowman’s sweetheart, I will put my review later today, thanks for another great story,can’t wait for more

    • Hi Laura!
      I’m so glad you enjoyed the book. Thank you for reading it. So fun you cherish the cold fronts so you can snuggle in with a good book and hot chocolate (two of my favorite things on a cold winter day!). Hope you get some cold reading weather, and wishing you a great rest of the winter!

  18. I’ve never attended a winter festival before. I am not a lover of cold weather except for staying inside where it’s warm reading a good book. I love warm weather, spring and summer.

  19. Winter and cold is definitely not my favorite season. I love snow around Christmas then I’m ready for it to go away. January is a long month for me. I am a sunshine kind of girl!!

  20. Those are amazing! I have not had the pleasure of visiting a Winter Festival… maybe one day… I do not mind the cold… I dislike extreme heat though…

  21. That snow carving festival sounds like a lot of fun! I’ve never been to one, but one time at the beach we did stumble upon a sand castle contest. Its amazing to see the artistry and detail in the various works. I don’t know how they manage it, but its really beautiful.

  22. Hi, I have never been to a winter festival, but it sounds like it would be fun for at least one time. I like cold weather but I would rather spend it indoors. Thank you for sharing this, I really enjoyed reading your post. Have a great rest of the week and stay safe.

  23. Love the cold and winter! My favorite time of year. Crisp air, falling snow, and a warm fire. What’s not to love?

  24. Shanna, this sounds and looks beautiful. Unfortunately for me, I DO NOT like the cold weather (or the hot weather for that matter). I guess I am just a indoors sort and love to shop. I love to look at nature especially the Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee. I could spend many hours driving through them, hiking through them and just plain chilling out. We lived in Knoxville, TN for quite a while and when the stress got to be too much, we took off for a few days to our place in Townsend and from there drove through the mountains, parking beside the beautiful and tranquil mountain streams. What a super stress remover. During the winter time we drove across the Smokys to N.C. to Cherokee just to see the majestic winter scenes. Oh, I have gotten so homesick right now!

    • Hi Judy! Nothing wrong with being an indoors girl who loves to shop (one of my favorite activities!). How beautiful to drive through the Smoky Mountains. I get it was wonderful. Sorry you got homesick, but so appreciate you sharing that with me. I have the loveliest picture in my mind of the scenic drives you took. Thank you for stopping in today!

  25. I’ve never attended a winter festival. My husband likes warmer weather even more than I do and I doubt I could convince him to go!

  26. I’ve never been to a winter festival because I (1) don’t like driving in snow, (2) I don’t like being cold. However, I would love to see snow sculptures. I settle for sand sculptures at the beach festivals in the summer.

  27. Hi Shannaa! I love the beautiful snow sculptures! I have never been to a winter festival. I love the beautiful scenery when the snow is on the ground and ice in the trees but these old bones can’t take the cold! And I have to be very careful walking on the snow and ice as I have had knee replacements and sure don’t want to fall and mess them up.
    I enjoyed your blog and the excerpt from the book. Looking forward to reading it!! Stay warm and be safe!! Hugs!?

  28. Hi Shannaa! I love the beautiful snow sculptures! I have never been to a winter festival. I love the beautiful scenery when the snow is on the ground and ice in the trees but these old bones can’t take the cold! And I have to be very careful walking on the snow and ice as I have had knee replacements and sure don’t want to fall and mess them up.
    I enjoyed your blog and the excerpt from the book. Looking forward to reading it!! Stay warm and be safe!! Hugs!?

    • Hi Ruth! Thank you for stopping in today. The cold is hard on folks for so many reasons. Glad you are warm and safe there! Hope you enjoy the book when you read it. Hugs and love!

  29. Haven’t been to a winter festival, but I used to visit the Newport RI mansions every winter with my late husband. They were always decorated beautifully for Christmas!

  30. Hello Shanna! I have never been to a Winter festival but it does sound like such an Amazing time Love all The Snow Sculptures they are Beautiful Thank you for the Post today and I do Love Winter weather as long as I stay warm Lol Blessings to you!

  31. Several years ago a group of us were traveling from Pullman-Moscow to Boise for a meeting. As we drove through McCall we discovered it was festival weekend. We stopped and walked around enjoying the snow sculptures, then it was back on the road. It was Friday morning and some of the sculptures were being finished. When we came back through on Sunday afternoon a warm front had come and some had already begun to melt. We didn’t get to participate in the many festival activities but we did get to see the beautiful sculptures and some of the process that goes into making them.

    • That is wonderful you got to stop in McCall for the festival and see some of the sculptures (and find a parking spot!). So glad you had that experience! Thank you for stopping in today!

  32. Living in Minnesota, we have lots of winter activities to take part in. Our community has the Nisswa Winter Jubilee to celebrate in February. Snow sculptures are made and some of them are quite awesome! I love winter. It just lasts too long some years. Loved your blog Shanna.

  33. i like the warm weather never been to ice or snow sculptures but would like to see them some time

  34. I never attended a wiinter festival when I lived in NYC. I live in the NW Florida area now so winters are not very cold. With me suffering from hot flashes often I look forward to the cooler temperatures during the winter.

  35. Sorry I missed the deadline. This sounds like an enjoyable read. I have been to a winter festival or two. I marched with my high school band in the Saranac Lake, NY Winter Festival many, many years ago. Froze my feet, and everything else. Leather boots and miniskirts are not made for single digit weather. They were into ice castles and build a large one which is lighted at night. This year’s theme is Totally 80’s and will be held Feb. 4 to 13.

    • It sounds like a chilly adventure marching in the cold, but it made a good story to share! The theme this year sounds fun! So glad you’ve been able to attend a few winter festivals! That’s wonderful! Have a great day, Patricia!

  36. I have never attended a winter event. I am not a fan of winter or cold. Thank you for sharing. God bless you.

  37. A Winter Festival/Carnival? I’ve never seen one advertised but it sure sounds fun! Your book was like a winter retreat! I am for sure going to do some looking to find one! Thank you for sharing this wonderful heartwarming story!

  38. My college used to have a winter fest where they did amazing ice carving and had all sorts of winter activities. My hubby and I may even take our daughter and her sweet fella to an upcoming one near us in a few weeks!

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