Just For Christmas by Scarlett Bailey
Synopsis When Alex Munro learns that the love of her life is getting married to another girl, all she wants is to be alone – and as far away from Edinburgh as possible.
Moving to a Cornish cottage, which comes complete with the world’s scruffiest dog, Alex finds that her new neighbours are determined to involve her in their madcap Christmas festivities.
Then she meets her sexy neighbour Ruan – and somehow Alex doesn’t want to be alone this Christmas after all. But having lost one fiance, Ruan has no intention of letting anyone get close to him again…
My rating: 4/5
Filed under: chick-lit, christmas, romance
Just for Christmas has the perfect winter cover. I am a bit of a magpie and anything that glitters grabs my attention and makes me go ‘oooooooh!’, so the twinkly cover appealed to me from the get-go.
I’m also a sucker for books about Christmas, chick-lit and animals, and Alex, the protagonist in Just for Christmas finds herself lumbered with a mad, scruffy dog called Buoy. I warmed to both characters immediately; they are both vibrant, full of personality and desperately in need of love. In fact the characters are the biggest success in this story. I felt like I knew them all, from Ruan, the slightly aloof boatman to Lucy, the barmaid with a hidden past, and I cared for them too.
Village life in Cornwall was also beautifully portrayed. Images of warm, bustling pubs where everyone knows everyone else, a strong community spirit and the importance of festive traditions being upheld made me want to be resident in Poldore myself.
There were elements of the plot that moved unrealistically fast, but I really didn’t mind that at all-sometimes life does move crazily fast and situations change overnight, and even if they didn’t I wouldn’t care because one of the great benefits of fiction is that anything goes!
If you have enjoyed Scarlett Bailey’s other books, or are a fan of Amy Silver, Sophie Kinsella or Marian Keyes, I am sure you’ll love this heart-warming story. As well as Christmas fun and froth it touches on the importance of family, friendship, acceptance and community-something we all need more of at Christmas.