Sunday 16 October 2022

BLOG TOUR: A Christmas Celebration - Heidi Swain

When Paige turns up unannounced at Wynthorpe Hall, she discovers the place she knew when she was growing up has changed beyond all recognition. She’s only planning to stay for a short time, but is quickly pulled into local life.
One night while driving home after delivering library books and shopping to residents she stumbles across an isolated cottage and meets Albert, its elderly and rather grumpy owner. She quickly realises there’s more to Albert than meets the eye and the same can be said for the other man she can’t seem to help running into, handsome but brooding Brodie.
All three of them have a secret and a desire to hide away from the world, but with Christmas on the horizon, is that really the best way to celebrate the season?

What did I think?

There's something so very special about a Heidi Swain novel so I was super excited to read A Christmas Celebration, and it completely exceeded all of my expectations.  Even though it's only October it made me feel rather festive, but more than that, it warmed my heart and filled me with goodwill.

I totally identified and emphasised with the main character of Paige.  She made a mistake in her job that she is totally beating herself up about and she keeps imagining the worst that could have happened, even though it didn't.  Paige is inflicted with that old 'what if...' that goes round and round inside your head and causes nightmares.

A visit to Paige's godparents is just the tonic that she needs and it seems like Paige has turned up at just the right time - with so much to do in the run up to Christmas, Paige is kept very busy and has little time to dwell on what might have been.  I couldn't help but be infected by some of Angus' enthusiasm for all things festive, especially from Heidi Swain's wonderful, magical descriptions of Wynthorpe Hall and the beautiful village of Wynbridge.

I was completely enthralled by the two men who enter Paige's life.  I could have reached into the book and given a huge hug to octogenarian Albert and reading about his lonely existence brought a tear to my eye.  It was so lovely to see the community spirit in Wynbridge that reaches out to people living alone in isolated homes.  Albert may have started my heart warming but Paige's love interest Brodie had my heart racing.  I mean, who doesn't love a Mr Darcy type character in a novel?  

I love how Heidi Swain's novels are standalone but often reference her earlier novels and I loved the mentions of the Cherry Tree Cafe and Skylark Farm, even though it has been many years since I read about them.  I felt like I was meeting old friends again and seeing how well they were doing added another couple of degrees on my heart temperature scale.

Completely heartwarming and gloriously festive, A Christmas Celebration is simply fabulous.  I really hope I get time to read it again nearer Christmas as it's the perfect book to read during the festive season.  Very highly recommended. 

I received an ARC to read and review for the blog tour; this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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