This book, novella length and a Kindle Single, is a perfect little gem for Christmas or any other time of year.
Here's the start of the book description:
Sherbourne Mistletoe has been prized and sold at the annual Mistletoe Fair for over a hundred years; but could this year possibly be the last? With her father’s sudden death and debts mounting up it looks as though Freya’s only hope for the future is to sell her beloved family home. And to make matters worse, the only contenders to buy Appleyard Farm, are the people she’d least like to sell it to – her rival growers, the Henderson brothers, who seem always to make life so difficult for her.
As the charming book cover and the title suggest, the story is themed around Christmas.
From the early description of Freya dressed in her "forest green coat and bright red woolly hat and scarf" as she sets off for the Mistletoe Fair, Christmas images abound. As well as the mistletoe there's snow, robins and baubles in abundance. The sense of Christmas is almost Victorian and its creation is lyrical. Descriptive writing is full and evocative: landscape, weather, rural life and the Christmas season are brought to life with a deft choice of words and phrases. But even with this strong sense of place and time
the themes of the novella are much deeper.
Underneath the romantic Christmas story is an exploration of bereavement; coming to terms with loss; letting go of the past. And this is written about with gentleness and sensitivity although there are some pithy remarks, sharp comments and occasional swearwords which prevents the novella from becoming saccharine and keeps it rooted firmly in reality.
The story unravels the complicated web of feelings Freya has towards five men in her life: her well-loved and recently deceased father; her chauvinistic, self-centred boyfriend, Gareth; the two Henderson brothers, Sam and Stephen; and Amos, the farm's handyman and general factotum. This is a romance story but the romance comes where it's least expected and although the reader expects a happy-ever-after ending, it's difficult to see where it's going to come from in Merry Mistletoe. (But it does!)
What I found extraordinarily good
about Merry Mistletoe was that so much was packed into a relatively short book. It took just a couple of hours to read but it felt as satisfying as a full length novel. Lovely!
Get more details
about Merry Mistletoe and Emma Davies' other books on her Amazon Author page or her website.
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