Publisher: Sapere Books
Release Date: November 24th, 2021
Rating: 4/5 Stars
This was a really adorable, cosy Christmas romance – artist and TV celebrity Sam needs to escape after a very public breakup. He heads to a small village, convinced the locals will fawn over him, and assumes that is exactly what local baker Tess will do when he bumps into her outside his rented home. But instead he finds himself accepted into this small, tightknit community, and rather than staying away from Tess, he is drawn to her.
I really loved the way these two interacted with each other. The original tension and assumptions aren’t dwelt on for too long, and it was fun to see how they kept bumping into each other. Tess is a really sweet character, determined to do as much good in the small village as she can. She’s also a widow with a young son, which adds a nice dimension to things, as we get to see Sam becoming almost a father-figure, while Tess battles against feeling she is betraying her husband when she starts falling for him.
I get that some Romance readers will read books like this and dismiss a lot because it’s a bit ‘samey’ to others, but honestly? I binged a lot of Christmas books this year for the first time, and this one was an absolute delight. There was another book it was fairly similar to, but this one was much stronger.
I love the sense of community in novels like this, too, where it really feels like the characters have additional people looking out for them. Tess, in particular, is well liked in Honeyford, everyone else seeing just how much she does for others. I also liked the focus on her son, and the way Sam interacted with him and how the pair of them schemed for ways to make Tess smile.
Overall I thought this was a wonderful read in the run up to Christmas, and it’s perfect for the festive season. I’d recommend getting hold of this in time for Christmas ’22.
Thank you to Sapere for providing me a copy of this arc via NetGalley. Views remain my own.