Jenny Colgan’s The Christmas Bookshop was one of my most anticipated Christmas
reads this year and it didn’t disappoint. I absolutely loved it!
About the Book
Carmen has always worked in her local department store. So, when the gorgeous old building closes its doors for good, she is more than a little lost.
When her sister, Sofia, mentions an opportunity in Edinburgh – a cute little bookshop, the spare room in her house – Carmen is reluctant, she was never very good at accepting help. But, short on options, she soon finds herself pulling into the snowy city just a month before Christmas.
What Sofia didn’t say is that the shop is on its last legs and that if Carmen can’t help turn things around before Christmas, the owner will be forced to sell. Privately, Sofia is sure it will take more than a miracle to save the store, but maybe this Christmas, Carmen might surprise them all…
There was just so much that I loved about this book. First of all, it’s set in Edinburgh where, as you possibly know, I live. I love a book with a setting that’s instantly familiar, where I know exactly what streets the characters are walking down, what shops they are going to, even what buses they are on. It really adds to my enjoyment. So I enjoyed the location of the book very much and had fun spotting the one or two tweaks the author made to the city.
The characters were wonderful and fairly jumped off the page to me. The sisterly rivalry between Carmen and Sofia was so well done. I really felt for Carmen who had always felt she came second best to her high flying sister in terms of work, her love life and her family life. The evolving relationship between the two was so well written. Sofia’s children were such fun to read about with Pippa seeming so old for her years, Phoebe being rather truculent and Jack quite easy-going. I felt the younger sisters’ relationship rather mirrored Carmen and Sofia’s. Jenny Colgan writes about children so well and really captures their characteristics and quirks. They always make me laugh.
There is of course a romance in the book, two potential romances in fact and I was wondering exactly how it would all work out for Carmen. I knew who I wanted her to end up with but sometimes the author made me think it might go either way. To an extent, Carmen actually had to learn to love herself a bit more and allow herself to be loved whether by friends, family or potential partners.
The bookshop in the title is owned by young Mr McCredie and it sounded in a right state when Carmen started to work there. She certainly had her work cut out to make the business anywhere near viable. It was a delight to read about how she slowly began to transform the dusty old shop and make it appealing again. The gentle mystery surrounding Mr McCredie added a little intrigue to the story and an emotional touch.
I had a big smile on my face when some characters from The Bookshop on the Shore put in a cameo appearance. It actually felt like old friends had come to visit!
The Christmas Bookshop was such a joy to read, but then I knew it would be. I’m sure I read somewhere that there might be a sequel to this and I really hope there is. With snowy Edinburgh at Christmas, a bookshop on beautiful Victoria Street and Jenny Colgan’s warmly funny writing, this really is a perfect Christmas treat. You could even say it’s a cracker!
Thanks to Fiona Brownlee for kindly sending me a copy of the book. The Christmas Bookshop
is published by Sphere Books and available now from all good bookshops.
About the Author
Jenny Colgan is the author of numerous Sunday Times bestselling novels and has won various awards for her writing, including the Melissa Nathan Award for Comedy Romance, the RNA Romantic Novel of the Year Award and the RNA Romantic Comedy Novel of the Year Award. Her books have sold more than five million copies worldwide and in 2015 she was inducted into the Love Stories Hall of Fame. Jenny is married with three children and lives in Scotland.
For more about Jenny, visit her website and her Facebook page, or follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
5 thoughts on “The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan | #bookreview #festiveread #fivestars | @jennycolgan @BooksSphere”
I love reading books set in familiar locations! So fun!
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My current read is also set in Edinburgh as it happens but it’s a crime novel!
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