Monday, 18 January 2016

15 Festive reads from 2015

Over recent years festive reads have become part of my Christmas musts and a glorious way to spend some 'down'time during the busy holiday season.
I love a Christmas book... and look forward every year to compiling my seasonal wish list... this years selection is as varied as a box of celebrations and as delicious to unwrap.
Here's my thoughts on the 15 read for 2015;

Wish upon a Christmas Cake –Darcie Boleyn - Kate would really like to spend Christmas at her cosy tearoom Crumbtious Cakes; instead she finds herself with her celebrity brother, judgemental mother and ex-boyfriend who is now a widower with 2 small children. mourning the recent loss of her beloved grandmother; Kate finds herself facing lots of reflection and the possibility of christmas wishes coming true. A delightful read from Darcie; perfect with a roaring fire and a plate of warm mince pies.
Let it Snow - Wendy Lewis – We are introduced to Karen as she is loading up her caravan and leaving her lazy husband Frank. She and her much loved pooch Eccles take up a 'live-in' post with an elderly lady in her childhood home town in Sussex. It soon become apparent that this is not the ideal solution and with her parents help buys a remote semi derelict farmhouse on the downs.  Karen finds herself by lucky accident working at the local vets, which is headed up by a very attractive vet! With her elderly father being diagnosed with dementia, a troublesome Ex, a local admirer and a crush on her boss; Karen's life is suddenly a little complicated. Through in a snowstorm and christmas around the corner this makes for a fun, though provoking festive read. This was my first read from Wendy and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There are laugh out loud moments along with some heartache; a lovely little read for a winters afternoon.
Christmas Ever After – Sarah Morgan - this is the 3rd book in the Puffin Island trilogy and features Skylar and Alec. Skylar and Alec's paths cross in London and Skylar finds herself spending the lead up to Christmas with Alec and his family. Alec finds his opinion of Skylar changing and they return to Puffin Island for Christmas. I have loved the Puffin Island trilogy and as well as following Alec & Skylar's story you catchup with the Emily and Brittany from the previous books. This is a gorgeous, sexy winter read, perfect to warm a cold winters night and will make you seek out holiday cottages in the islands off the maine coast!
Four Weddings and a White Christmas – Jenny Oliver - Book 5 in Jenny Olivers Cherry Pie Island and a welcome return to such a lovely place. Hannah is offered a dressmakers job of a lifetime and finds herself back on cherry pie island; a place she spent many happy moments as a teenager and reunited with friends from school. She also crosses paths with cynical chef Harry Fontaine and with 4 weddings to assist with she spends the year doing her up most to ensure all brides are happy. - a lovely welcome return to all previous stories, sprinkled with a dusting of snow, a twinkle of christmas magic a jaunt to New York and a lice of love and friendship and cherry pie. 
Christmas at the Castle –Victoria Connelly - a lovely little novella from Victoria set in the Highlands of Scotland. Catriona Fraser and her 2 children live at the family Caldoon castle; bequeathed after her husbands death. Hiring out key rooms for Christmas they find Iain MacNeice and his 2 daughters arrive for the holiday period. Things aren't as idyllic as they appear and both families find themselves needing each other before the holidays are over.
One Wish in Manhattan –Mandy Baggot - Hayley is a single mum to Angel and as well as fulfilling a Christmas wish to spend the festive season in New York with her brother; she also embarks on a journey to try and find Angel's dad and fulfil her wish for a Dad for christmas. As she embarks on the search she crosses paths with billionaire Oliver, here the adventures become even more thrilling. I started this book on my journey to New York in December and it really was the most perfect read. Another great story from Mandy.
A Miracle at Macy's – Lynn Marie Hulsman - Charlotte is a shy homebody who is much happier at home writing her cookbooks and blog. She finds herself loosing her beloved pet dog Hudson in a week before Christmas. Her celebrity aunt loans her her assistant Henry to help with the dog hunt. Hudson leads Charlotte and Henry on a merry dance as he is spotted in Central park with Santa's helpers, in Times Square with a supermodel and in multiple locations across New York.... I read this book whilst in New York in December and i loved it, it made me laugh lots.. its like Home Alone 2 for dogs!
Midnight at Tiffany's – Sarah Morgan – loved this little christmas novella by Sarah Morgan – Matilda is a waitress by day and budding author by night. When she is rescued by a handsome stranger at an event and finds herself out of a job; she embarks on one magical night with him. Chase Adams is a millionaire and when he finds himself talking to Matilda who has no idea who he is or what he is worth he finds himself wanting to spend more than one night with her…. Can they find magic at midnight at Tiffany's. Sarah Morgan writes fabulous stories with great characters and she
Doesn't disappoint in this festive read. Gorgeous men, New York and Christmas … ticks lots of my boxes!
Chocolate Lovers Christmas –Carole Matthews – CM is a favourite of mine and I looked forward to catching-up with the ladies from the Chocolate Lovers Club. It’s a couple of years since I read the 1st book and this is the 3rd in the series; it felt like I was catching up with old friends.  Lucy is now running chocolate heaven; Nadia is coming to terms with her husband's death and all the complications that that has created. Autumn is dealing with tragedy and not getting much help from her fiancé and Chantal is besotted with her new baby and trying to hold her marriage together. As Christmas approached the 4 ladies find each of their lives unravelling a little; throwing up all sorts of surprises from estranged families, ex fiancés, new beginnings and  loves lost it is soon apparent that their friendship is the commonality that will help them through it all.
It took a little while for me to familiarise myself with the characters, but once in I was completely absorbed and it was like curling up with a huge mug of hot chocolate and a warm blanket. As with all of CM's books; it's never plain sailing for the characters and all of them had their share of heartache, fun, love and laughter and I loved it all.  Anxiously now awaiting Book 4 in this series and their next adventure.
Last Christmas – Lily Greene - Last Christmas Ella had her heartbroken on New Years Eve by her banker boyfriend Robbie. This Christmas, Ella is embarking on her debut exhibition in a London gallery. Whilst shopping on the run up to Christmas she keeps bumping into mysterious handsome stranger. Their paths keep crossing and Ella finds herself falling for Fergus a war photographer.Just when she thinks she is finally moving on with her life; Robbie turns up at her opening night. Ella has some choices to make.  Last Christmas is a lovely heart-warming read and a lovely modern twist on the classic love triangle and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
My Big Fat Christmas Wedding– Samantha Tonge - we join Pippa back on the Greek island with her fiancée Nico. with her christmas wedding approaching she heads back to England for her ex's engagement party. Can she really give up the glamour and excitement of London for the slow life in the teashop on the sleepy greek island. This was a much welcome return to the village of Taxos and its inhabitants... perfect as a stand alone read or squeal to Game of Scones.
A Christmas Hideaway – Emily Harvale – Holly thinks herself still in love with her long term boyfriend, (now her ex who ran away with her best friend) and the thought of them both coming back to Hideaway Down for Christmas fills her with dread. She volunteers to look after her mums holiday cottages and hopes that this will keep her away from the village and the chance of bumping into them both. Someone else who is hoping to hideaway for christmas is author Gabriel Hardwick who has hired one of the cottages for the festive season; thus avowing his agent and ex-girlfriend Bryony. With one of the coldest winters upon them and a series of unfortunate incidents Holly finds herself falling for Gabriel in more ways than one. – This novella was a pleasant surprise and I now look forward to the 2nd book in the series. The characters were fun and the village delightful. With a couple of sweet twists this made for a delightful read.
Christmas wishes and Mistletoe Kisses – Jenny Hale - Abbey has put her dreams on hold to raise her son Max and help her mum look after her grandfather. By a lucky accident she finds herself taking on the challenge of decorating Nick Sinclairs large mansion before his family descend for Christmas. Not only is the house absolutely gorgeous so is its owner!. Abbey starts to transform the house into a home and also finds herself spending a lot of spare time with the delicious Nick... can Christmas sprinkle is magic on them both. I loved this book; a delicious festive romance perfect for the holiday season... sheer escapism from the start.
Holly's Christmas Kiss – Alison May - Holly Michelle Jolly hates Christmas and has been the brunt of festive jokes since she was a child. With a flight to a dream holiday cancelled, she finds herself meeting Sean. Sean loves Christmas and hopes to change Holly's opinion of Christmas for the better... this is a fun little novella and the characters and story are worthy of a bigger read. Look forward to reading book 2.
Christmas at the Cove –Victoria Connelly - Victoria's first Christmas novella and this one sees us meet Millie at Christmas a her aunts cottage on the north Devon coast. Unbeknown to Millie her elderly auntie has been meddling and she finds a handsome man and his son in residence when she arrives. Deciding to share the cottage for Christmas a lovely story unravels and develops between them. This is a lovely story and evokes some lovely memories of spending winters on the Devon and Cornish coasts. perfect reading for a cold Saturday afternoon curled in front of a roaring fire.
Thank-you to all authors for their gorgeous stories which kept me occupied at airports, on aeroplanes and commuting across London during the festive season.I enjoyed them all, and look forward to compiling my festive list for 2016. Here are some previous book posts from recent months.

1 comment:

Pennyblossoms said...

Maybe a 2016 resolution for me should be 'read more books' or even 'read books'.
And if I do, I will be back over here to make a list!
Zxx

Monday, 18 January 2016

15 Festive reads from 2015

Over recent years festive reads have become part of my Christmas musts and a glorious way to spend some 'down'time during the busy holiday season.
I love a Christmas book... and look forward every year to compiling my seasonal wish list... this years selection is as varied as a box of celebrations and as delicious to unwrap.
Here's my thoughts on the 15 read for 2015;

Wish upon a Christmas Cake –Darcie Boleyn - Kate would really like to spend Christmas at her cosy tearoom Crumbtious Cakes; instead she finds herself with her celebrity brother, judgemental mother and ex-boyfriend who is now a widower with 2 small children. mourning the recent loss of her beloved grandmother; Kate finds herself facing lots of reflection and the possibility of christmas wishes coming true. A delightful read from Darcie; perfect with a roaring fire and a plate of warm mince pies.
Let it Snow - Wendy Lewis – We are introduced to Karen as she is loading up her caravan and leaving her lazy husband Frank. She and her much loved pooch Eccles take up a 'live-in' post with an elderly lady in her childhood home town in Sussex. It soon become apparent that this is not the ideal solution and with her parents help buys a remote semi derelict farmhouse on the downs.  Karen finds herself by lucky accident working at the local vets, which is headed up by a very attractive vet! With her elderly father being diagnosed with dementia, a troublesome Ex, a local admirer and a crush on her boss; Karen's life is suddenly a little complicated. Through in a snowstorm and christmas around the corner this makes for a fun, though provoking festive read. This was my first read from Wendy and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There are laugh out loud moments along with some heartache; a lovely little read for a winters afternoon.
Christmas Ever After – Sarah Morgan - this is the 3rd book in the Puffin Island trilogy and features Skylar and Alec. Skylar and Alec's paths cross in London and Skylar finds herself spending the lead up to Christmas with Alec and his family. Alec finds his opinion of Skylar changing and they return to Puffin Island for Christmas. I have loved the Puffin Island trilogy and as well as following Alec & Skylar's story you catchup with the Emily and Brittany from the previous books. This is a gorgeous, sexy winter read, perfect to warm a cold winters night and will make you seek out holiday cottages in the islands off the maine coast!
Four Weddings and a White Christmas – Jenny Oliver - Book 5 in Jenny Olivers Cherry Pie Island and a welcome return to such a lovely place. Hannah is offered a dressmakers job of a lifetime and finds herself back on cherry pie island; a place she spent many happy moments as a teenager and reunited with friends from school. She also crosses paths with cynical chef Harry Fontaine and with 4 weddings to assist with she spends the year doing her up most to ensure all brides are happy. - a lovely welcome return to all previous stories, sprinkled with a dusting of snow, a twinkle of christmas magic a jaunt to New York and a lice of love and friendship and cherry pie. 
Christmas at the Castle –Victoria Connelly - a lovely little novella from Victoria set in the Highlands of Scotland. Catriona Fraser and her 2 children live at the family Caldoon castle; bequeathed after her husbands death. Hiring out key rooms for Christmas they find Iain MacNeice and his 2 daughters arrive for the holiday period. Things aren't as idyllic as they appear and both families find themselves needing each other before the holidays are over.
One Wish in Manhattan –Mandy Baggot - Hayley is a single mum to Angel and as well as fulfilling a Christmas wish to spend the festive season in New York with her brother; she also embarks on a journey to try and find Angel's dad and fulfil her wish for a Dad for christmas. As she embarks on the search she crosses paths with billionaire Oliver, here the adventures become even more thrilling. I started this book on my journey to New York in December and it really was the most perfect read. Another great story from Mandy.
A Miracle at Macy's – Lynn Marie Hulsman - Charlotte is a shy homebody who is much happier at home writing her cookbooks and blog. She finds herself loosing her beloved pet dog Hudson in a week before Christmas. Her celebrity aunt loans her her assistant Henry to help with the dog hunt. Hudson leads Charlotte and Henry on a merry dance as he is spotted in Central park with Santa's helpers, in Times Square with a supermodel and in multiple locations across New York.... I read this book whilst in New York in December and i loved it, it made me laugh lots.. its like Home Alone 2 for dogs!
Midnight at Tiffany's – Sarah Morgan – loved this little christmas novella by Sarah Morgan – Matilda is a waitress by day and budding author by night. When she is rescued by a handsome stranger at an event and finds herself out of a job; she embarks on one magical night with him. Chase Adams is a millionaire and when he finds himself talking to Matilda who has no idea who he is or what he is worth he finds himself wanting to spend more than one night with her…. Can they find magic at midnight at Tiffany's. Sarah Morgan writes fabulous stories with great characters and she
Doesn't disappoint in this festive read. Gorgeous men, New York and Christmas … ticks lots of my boxes!
Chocolate Lovers Christmas –Carole Matthews – CM is a favourite of mine and I looked forward to catching-up with the ladies from the Chocolate Lovers Club. It’s a couple of years since I read the 1st book and this is the 3rd in the series; it felt like I was catching up with old friends.  Lucy is now running chocolate heaven; Nadia is coming to terms with her husband's death and all the complications that that has created. Autumn is dealing with tragedy and not getting much help from her fiancé and Chantal is besotted with her new baby and trying to hold her marriage together. As Christmas approached the 4 ladies find each of their lives unravelling a little; throwing up all sorts of surprises from estranged families, ex fiancés, new beginnings and  loves lost it is soon apparent that their friendship is the commonality that will help them through it all.
It took a little while for me to familiarise myself with the characters, but once in I was completely absorbed and it was like curling up with a huge mug of hot chocolate and a warm blanket. As with all of CM's books; it's never plain sailing for the characters and all of them had their share of heartache, fun, love and laughter and I loved it all.  Anxiously now awaiting Book 4 in this series and their next adventure.
Last Christmas – Lily Greene - Last Christmas Ella had her heartbroken on New Years Eve by her banker boyfriend Robbie. This Christmas, Ella is embarking on her debut exhibition in a London gallery. Whilst shopping on the run up to Christmas she keeps bumping into mysterious handsome stranger. Their paths keep crossing and Ella finds herself falling for Fergus a war photographer.Just when she thinks she is finally moving on with her life; Robbie turns up at her opening night. Ella has some choices to make.  Last Christmas is a lovely heart-warming read and a lovely modern twist on the classic love triangle and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
My Big Fat Christmas Wedding– Samantha Tonge - we join Pippa back on the Greek island with her fiancée Nico. with her christmas wedding approaching she heads back to England for her ex's engagement party. Can she really give up the glamour and excitement of London for the slow life in the teashop on the sleepy greek island. This was a much welcome return to the village of Taxos and its inhabitants... perfect as a stand alone read or squeal to Game of Scones.
A Christmas Hideaway – Emily Harvale – Holly thinks herself still in love with her long term boyfriend, (now her ex who ran away with her best friend) and the thought of them both coming back to Hideaway Down for Christmas fills her with dread. She volunteers to look after her mums holiday cottages and hopes that this will keep her away from the village and the chance of bumping into them both. Someone else who is hoping to hideaway for christmas is author Gabriel Hardwick who has hired one of the cottages for the festive season; thus avowing his agent and ex-girlfriend Bryony. With one of the coldest winters upon them and a series of unfortunate incidents Holly finds herself falling for Gabriel in more ways than one. – This novella was a pleasant surprise and I now look forward to the 2nd book in the series. The characters were fun and the village delightful. With a couple of sweet twists this made for a delightful read.
Christmas wishes and Mistletoe Kisses – Jenny Hale - Abbey has put her dreams on hold to raise her son Max and help her mum look after her grandfather. By a lucky accident she finds herself taking on the challenge of decorating Nick Sinclairs large mansion before his family descend for Christmas. Not only is the house absolutely gorgeous so is its owner!. Abbey starts to transform the house into a home and also finds herself spending a lot of spare time with the delicious Nick... can Christmas sprinkle is magic on them both. I loved this book; a delicious festive romance perfect for the holiday season... sheer escapism from the start.
Holly's Christmas Kiss – Alison May - Holly Michelle Jolly hates Christmas and has been the brunt of festive jokes since she was a child. With a flight to a dream holiday cancelled, she finds herself meeting Sean. Sean loves Christmas and hopes to change Holly's opinion of Christmas for the better... this is a fun little novella and the characters and story are worthy of a bigger read. Look forward to reading book 2.
Christmas at the Cove –Victoria Connelly - Victoria's first Christmas novella and this one sees us meet Millie at Christmas a her aunts cottage on the north Devon coast. Unbeknown to Millie her elderly auntie has been meddling and she finds a handsome man and his son in residence when she arrives. Deciding to share the cottage for Christmas a lovely story unravels and develops between them. This is a lovely story and evokes some lovely memories of spending winters on the Devon and Cornish coasts. perfect reading for a cold Saturday afternoon curled in front of a roaring fire.
Thank-you to all authors for their gorgeous stories which kept me occupied at airports, on aeroplanes and commuting across London during the festive season.I enjoyed them all, and look forward to compiling my festive list for 2016. Here are some previous book posts from recent months.

1 comment:

Pennyblossoms said...

Maybe a 2016 resolution for me should be 'read more books' or even 'read books'.
And if I do, I will be back over here to make a list!
Zxx