Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan
|Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan|
|Category: Women's Fiction|
|Reviewer: Karen Grace|
|Summary: I liked this book but didn't love it. It's a heart-warming innocent story of family and friendships set in a charming Cornish village - all of which I loved. But, the author has quite a unique style of writing that may not be to everyone's taste.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 384||Date: October 2017|
|External links: Author's website|
Polly, Huckle and Neil are back but in what, sadly for fans of the Little Beach series, seems to be the last of this trilogy. Never say never but by the end of this book, the author has certainly secured the destiny of these three much-loved characters. Don't be put off if you haven't read the previous ones, it really won't matter particularly as the author provides a helpful little synopsis at the start to help those, like me, that are new to these stories.
So, Polly has built a home and bakery business in the very romantic and inconvenient tidal island of Mount Polbearne with her American boyfriend Huckle and 'pet' puffin Neil. She has everything she's ever dreamed of so when Huckle wants them to marry, her best friend makes a potentially life-altering confession and an estranged family member gets in touch it all gets a bit much for Polly.
What I really liked was the yin and yang of this book. You've got the deliciously warm and quaint backdrop of village life, baking, cobbled streets and lighthouses (which is undoubtedly my preferred setting for any good book) mixed with a modern story of female entrepreneurs, single mothers and one night stands which keeps it from being too twee and sickly.
I love a story where friendships, family and marital relationships feature just as heavily as romance - or in this case more so. Whilst I've never read her before I know Jenny Colgan has been well praised for writing smart, witty chicklit but I wouldn't say this was particularly funny. It was a truly girly feel good book that did make me smile but more so with the sheer adorability of it rather than actual laughter.
I also struggled a bit with the style of writing especially initially until I settled into it. In my mind it's written in quite a simplistic manner and familiar tone of voice, not to dissimilar to that of children's fiction. For example, You might wonder how such a tiny village sustains two bakeries, but then you obviously haven't eaten there or the opening sentence which begins This story is about one particular Christmas, but it actually starts with a very Bad Thing happening the previous spring. I also didn't really get the pet puffin thing, I mean I'm an animal lover through and through who loves the romantic notion of befriending a wild animal but actually being able to take a puffin everywhere with you, i.e. to a hospital or five-star restaurant, was all a little far-fetched for me.
As the title suggests this book is set at Christmas but again don't be put off as it's little more than a nod to the festive season with only very subtle references to mince pies, decorations, etc. So this is 'not just for Christmas' but would be enjoyable at any time of the year. Although the fact that it is coming up to Christmas does give me an excuse to try Polly's recipe for mincemeat twists or Yule log which as a nice touch can be found at the back of the book.
Overall I liked this book but didn't love it although fans of Little Beach or Jenny Colgan will I'm sure. Other feel good chicklit you might like are Amelia Grey's Fireside Dream by Abby Clements or if you're feeling festive my favourite Sleigh Rides and Silver Bells at the Christmas Fair by Heidi Swain.
You can read more book reviews or buy Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan at Amazon.co.uk.
You can read more book reviews or buy Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan at Amazon.com.
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