Published by Sphere an imprint of Little Brown

I absolutely love Jenny Colgan books, especially the ones based on her Scottish island of Mure! Although it’s fabulous as a stand-alone, it’s alway great to catch up with the inhabitants and see how they’re getting on and ‘Christmas at the Island Hotel’ is no exception!

Flora’s brother, Fintan, is grieving the loss of his husband Coltan. Coltan wanted to revamp an old hotel on the island but sadly passed away before he could fulfil his dream.

Fintan is finding it hard to muster the enthusiasm but Flora, who is on maternity leave from her own bakery, is gently nudging him in the right direction! Somehow they need to cobble together a good staff team & ensure that everything is ready for their Christmas opening!

That’s easier said than done! They end up with a mercurial French chef, an absolutely inept kitchen boy who has never cooked anything in his life and a sweet kitchen assistant, who is painfully shy and whose mum is incredibly difficult to live with after the death of her husband.

Intertwined with this we get to look in on the some of the other islanders and catch up with them: Saif & his children, who are Syrian refugees & have settled on Mure; Lorna, the head teacher who suffers such turmoil as she adores Saif but their relationship has to remain secret; Jan & Charlie, who have recently had a baby and my favourite, Agot, who is the daughter of Innes & Eilidh & is absolutely brilliantly hilarious!

In fact, humour runs all the way through this story & there are some fabulous laugh out loud moments which segue into more sensitive elements. Jenny Colgan is a master storyteller & the reader cares very much about each character and their own particular story.

Also there is always a dog! This particular story focuses on Bjårk, Konstantin’s dog who absolutely steals the show at one point!

This is a wonderful Christmas story which is about love, friendship, family & acceptance. It’s a perfect gift 🎁 but buy two, one for you & one to gift! 😃

📚If you do buy this book, please consider buying from your local bookseller during these challenging times, they are all working hard with online orders and are happy to post anywhere! 📚🎄

Funny & heartwarming, an fabulously entertaining Christmas story. 5⭐️