The theme for this month’s Romance Book Reading Challenge was Second-chance love. There were several prompts including Childhood Friends and Re-read a Favourite. Christmas at Carly’s Cupcakes hit both on the head and allowed me to feature a gorgeous cover from one of my favourite authors. Oh, and the book is pretty awesome too!
It’s December on Castle Street; the fairy lights are twinkling, snow has settled and the festive season is in full swing.
For Carly, the owner of Carly’s Cupcakes, it’s the busiest time of year getting everyone’s Christmas treats ready on time. However with her clumsy sister, Bethany, as a co-worker, it’s proving a difficult task. They say you shouldn’t mix work with family. Maybe they have a point…
As Christmas approaches, Carly is also eagerly awaiting the return of her best friend to Whitsborough Bay. Liam has no idea he’s been the object of her affection since their schooldays. After years of pining after him, can Carly pluck up the courage to finally tell him how she really feels by 25th December?
Could a little festive magic make all of Carly’s wishes come true this Christmas…?
A heartwarming, short festive story of friendship and family from bestseller Jessica Redland. You can find out what happens to Carly next through exploring her best friend Tara’s story in Starry Skies Over The Chocolate Pot Café.
This is a new and updated version of Christmas at Carly’s Cupcakes which has been previously published.
Available on Amazon and via Kindle Unlimited.
I’ll give this (updated novel) re-read a mini review. If you want to read my longer review from the first edition, click here.
Jessica hasn’t changed too much of the story with this rerelease. One area she focused more on was Carly’s relationship with her sister, Bethany. I’ll admit, when you first start reading about Bethany and her mishaps, you kind of want to slap some sense into Carly and tell her to sack her sister, family or not! But…. how many of us could really do that to our little sister?! In this book we get more insight into how Bethany ended up so fragile and we see more of why Carly feels so responsible for her. The theme of family and supporting one another really shines in that regard.
Another central theme that touches most of the characters is bullying. How it happens, the immediate effects, the possible lifelong effects are all covered. I think the issue is delved into just enough to flesh out the characters and still raise awareness of the issue.
Strongly interwoven with those themes is the wonderful Christmas atmosphere. Anyone who has ever read a Jessica Redland book knows about the beauty of Castle Street at Christmas. You may also know of the great sense of camaraderie shared among the Castle Street business owners. This novel touches everything from the emotions and anticipation leading up to Christmas to the beautiful decor and yummy cakes! The festive factor is way high!
And well.. the romance of course! Absolute perfection set against all the other fantastic elements. An added bonus… you can catch up with the lovely Carly and Liam when you read Starry Skies Over the Chocolate Pot!
Hmm… this review wasn’t so mini after all. Ah well, Jessica deserves the love. Make sure to add this one to your Christmas list if you haven’t already!!!
I give Christmas at Carly’s cupcakes 5/5 jolly espresso shots.