Today I am delighted to be sharing with you my review of Julia Roberts’ lovely festive novella, Christmas at Carol’s. The book is released on 18th December, just in time for Christmas, and I’d like to thank the author for providing an advance copy for review. I’ll share my thoughts with you in just a moment, after we’ve taken a look at what it’s all about.
The Official Book Blurb
An uplifting tale of people’s desire to help each other in the season of goodwill – a romantic comedy with a twist in the tale.
Carol fell in love with Wisteria Cottage the moment she laid eyes on it and moved in two weeks before Christmas hoping it would be start of a new more positive period in her life.
On her first night in her new home she discovers an old Christmas card to someone called Annie with a heart-breaking message inside from Jake.
Although she doesn’t know them, and despite being on a self-imposed dating break herself, Carol begins planning how she can bring them together, while her new neighbour, Sally, is attempting a bit of matchmaking of her own.
If you are looking for a quick and uplifting read then you really should take a look at this perfectly festive novella from Julia Roberts. It’s full of the comforts of home, and uplifting story, the normal family dynamics one expects and practically dreads at this time of year, and a smattering of good old romance to boot. Who could ask for more?
Moving into her own place just before Christmas, teacher Carol knows she has a lot of work to do to make her new cottage feel like a real home. Finding a box of decorations in the spare bedroom gives her the makings of a good Christmas, but Carol knows it takes far more than that to make her festive season special. But what she find within the box set’s Carol on a bit of a quest, one to try to reunite two lovers she has never met. Embracing the village spirit courtesy of her next door neighbour, Carol finds herself faced with a very different Christmas to the one she had planned.
I loved the spirit of this book. From the very off I could really get behind Carol, understood her need to strike out on her own, and the feel of inadequacy she felt when faced with the wonder that is her younger sister Noella. Noella is everything Carol isn’t – settled, confident and a mother, revelling in the perfect life as Carol struggles to make ends meet, especially given her crippling mortgage. I’m guessing that a lot of people can recognise that sibling rivalry and also the way in which the parents subtly undermine her ability to go it alone. No outright declaration that she will fail, but enough hints to make you know they are sceptical. It really made me like Carol all the more.
Now I’m not a big one for Christmas, but sometimes you just need a little goodwill and good cheer to brighten your day, and this book has it in abundance. The romantic story of Annie and Jake threading through the story can warm the hardest heart, and you can’t help but smile at neighbour Sally’s hopeless and not so subtle attempts to set Carol up with any single man with a pulse. Apart from the postman …
This is a really quick read, perhaps no more than an hour of your day, but it’s one that will leave you with a warm glow on a winters day and put you in the mood for good food, good company and a lot of good festive cheer.
Christmas at Carol’s is available from the 18th December and can be ordered from the following retailers:
About the Author
Julia Roberts’ passion for writing began when, at the age of ten, after winning second prize in a short story-writing competition, she announced that she wanted to write a book. After a small gap of forty-seven years, and a career in the entertainment industry, Julia finally fulfilled her dream in 2013 when her first book, a memoir entitled One Hundred Lengths of the Pool, was published by Preface Publishing. Two weeks later she had the idea for her first novel, Life’s a Beach and Then…, book one in the Liberty Sands Trilogy, which was released in May 2015.
Julia still works full-time as a Presenter for the TV channel QVC, where she has recently celebrated her twenty-third anniversary.
She now lives in Ascot with her partner of thirty-nine years and occasionally one or other of her adult children and their respective cats.
Also By Julia Roberts
Life’s a Beach and Then… (Liberty Sands trilogy, book one)
If He Really Loved Me… (Liberty Sands trilogy, book two)
It’s Never Too Late to Say… (Liberty Sands trilogy, book three)
Time for a Short Story
The Shadow of Her Smile (free short story on http://www.juliarobertsauthor.com)
One Hundred Lengths of the Pool
Alice in Theatreland