Monday, November 29, 2021

The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan

This is the first book I've read by Colgan and I liked it. It takes place in Edinburgh. The main character is Carmen. She's just lost her job in a retail store. She's unmotivated and out of desperation, her mother suggests Carmen go to her sister's. She'll relieve a nanny to take care of nieces and a nephew Carmen has never bothered to give birthday gifts. And, she'll be staying with a sister who irritates her to no end.

Relationship issues between sisters are huge in this novel. We see it between Carmen and her sister Sofia and also in Sofia's two daughters. Another issue arises when Sofia has a job for Carmen, working at a bookstore that is in decline and needs rejuvenation before all is lost. The bookstore owner is somewhat of a recluse and Carmen has her work cut out for her.

In a sense, this book is predictable. We see wonderful character transformation and relationship transformation. Both transformations evolve within the atmosphere of the Christmas season.

Colgan's writing style is a pleasure to read, although there is a bit of foul language. I really like how we are taken through many interesting areas and buildings in Edinburgh. There is a little humor along the way and a potential yet complicated budding romance too. Reading the novel, I felt like reviewing what really makes one feel OK. Is it a person or a thing? It was fun being on the journey with Carmen in finding her answer to that question.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

Jenny Colgan is the New York Times bestselling author of numerous novels. Her novels have won the 2012 Melissa Nathan Award for Comedy Romance and the RNA Romantic Novel of the Year Award 2013. She is married with three children and lives just north of Edinburgh in Scotland. Photo: Charlie Hopkinson

William Morrow, 336 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)

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