Saturday, December 23, 2017

Christmas at Hope Cottage by Lily Graham

4 Star

When thirty-year-old food writer Emma Halloway gets dumped then knocked off her bike, she’s broken in more ways than one, and returns to her family’s cosy cottage in the Yorkshire Dales. Emma hasn’t been back in some time, running from her crazy relatives and her childhood sweetheart, Jack Allen.
Emma’s grandmother is determined to bake her back to health and happiness, as the Halloways have done for generations. Surrounded by old friends and warm cinnamon buns, Emma starts to believe in her family’s special talents for healing again. But then in walks Jack with his sparkling hazel eyes, stirring up the family feud between them. 
As the twinkly lights are strung between the streetlamps, Emma remembers just why she fell for Jack in the first place... and why a Halloway should never date an Allen.
The infuriating new lodger, Sandro, doesn’t believe anyone should have to choose between love and family. With a little bit of Christmas magic, can Emma and Jack find a way to be together, or will Emma find herself heartbroken once more?

Kathryn - 4 Star

I became a bit attached to this village and this family.  There's something about the bonds that Lily Graham creates that appeal to me and I had a great visual of Hope cottage and the lovely women who prepared the meals, with hope and love, for those who asked for help. I was never really clear if they considered themselves witches or simply blessed with gifts of help?  Either way the warmth of the home and the history in that kitchen came through. 

Emma is unsettled being back in the village though, partly because her extensive injuries are making her feel unlike herself and partly because she has had to come face to face with the ex she lost.  I never really took to him, which was just as well really, and was much more intrigued by her aunt's lodger. He was lovely, smart and warm, just the right sort of man to help Emma become herself again! But with the romance to the side I just adored the bonds between Emma and het aunts. She was obviously very close to each of them and those relationships made the story for me.  

I wish Emma had had more friends- there were some speckled into the story but none that really made me feel she had support her own age.  Regardless though the novel is charming and both emotional and amusing.  A great read!

Thank you to Bookouture for our review copy.  All opinions are our own.

Connect with Lily Graham:
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