If you’ve been following my #AuthorIntheFestiveSpotlight series, you’ll have spotted that Jessica Redland has already taken part. You can read her answers here. I’ve now managed to catch up with one of her festive releases for this year, Snowflakes Over The Starfish Café, although as she explained in the Festive Spotlight feature, it’s not really a Christmas book, more a seasonal book, and it moves back and forward through the years to explain why the season is so difficult for her characters. Before I give you my thoughts, let’s see what the book is about.
About the book
Welcome to The Starfish Café – where you will find stunning views, delicious food and lifelong friendships.
Two broken hearts.
Since she inherited The Starfish Café, Hollie has poured her heart into the business, striving to keep her mother’s traditions and warm-hearted spirit alive. But behind closed doors Hollie is searching for true happiness as she grieves the tragic loss of her family who were once the beating heart of the café…
An unexpected meeting.
Jake lives by two rules: don’t let anyone get close and don’t talk about what happened. Little does he know that a chance meeting at The Starfish Café, facilitated by a fluffy lost dog, is about to turn his world upside down…
The chance to love again.
Can Hollie and Jake break down the barriers that have been holding them back from finding love and happiness, before Christmas comes around? After all, with courage, nothing is impossible…
Well my goodness, Jessica Redland doesn’t shy away from giving her characters some very troubled times! You would have to be very hard-hearted not to feel for both Hollie and Jake. They both had gone through so many sad times and it was no wonder that they didn’t feel like celebrating Christmas any more. A lot of Jake’s insecurities came from his older sister who was truly horrible to him, one of the nastiest characters I’ve come across. Thank goodness he had some kind people in his life too. Hollie’s reasons for finding the period from Bonfire Night to Christmas were heart-breaking to read about but she had some wonderful friends to hold her up as well as her beloved Starfish Café.
The Starfish Café really does feel like a welcoming place, a little community in its own right. I so enjoyed meeting some of the regular customers and finding out their stories. Warmth and friendship are so central to the ethos of the cafe. These values were established by Hollie’s mum, values which she was determined to honour and carry on.
Jessica Redland has such a warm and easy to read writing style which draws you into the book from the beginning. Snowflakes Over the Starfish Café packs quite an emotional punch and is a cosy story of courage and finding love. I’m looking forward to returning to the café to read more about these characters in other books in the forthcoming series.
My thanks to the publishers Boldwood Books for my review copy of this book via Netgalley. You will find various buying options on the Boldwood website here: Snowflakes Over the Starfish Café
About the Author
Jessica Redland writes emotional but uplifting stories of love, friendship, family and community. Her Whitsborough Bay books transport readers to the stunning North Yorkshire Coast where she lives with her husband, daughter and sprocker spaniel. Her Hedgehog Hollow series, set in a hedgehog rescue centre, takes readers into the beautiful rolling countryside of the Yorkshire Wolds.