If ever there was a book written to be turned into a Hallmark movie, this is it.
The Christmas House by Victoria James introduces the reader to two main characters: Ruby, a woman who has seen her fair share of adversity and heartache, and her granddaughter Charlotte, who might be destined to suffer from a similar heartache if not for a trip home for the holidays.
What I Liked
I liked that the characters in this book carried the wounds and scars of the trauma in their life. Just like most of us walking around out here in the land of reality. I like that these characters have been shaped by their pasts, and that we get to see them push back against the inclination to just stay safe. Charlotte is a quirky character who carries her heart on her sleeve and wants so badly to find love…it’s just that everything she’s ever known has shown her not to trust it.
This book digs into the messy family relationships that often makes the holidays so stressful, but will make your heart sing with a big ol’ romantic gesture just in time for the New Year.
For it’s likeable, relatable characters and for the minutes I spent daydreaming about living in a Christmas-themed house, I give this book a solid four stars.
What I Wish Was Different
Honestly, my only complaint is that I would have liked this book to be longer. I wanted to sit in the buzz and warmth of the building romantic tension between Charlotte and Wyatt just a bit longer. And I might have also liked a little more backstory and development of the issues Charlotte has with her mother and father.
Genre: General Fiction; Women’s Fiction
Release Date: September 7, 2021
It’s Christmas in the small town of Silver Springs which is bursting with holiday spirit. The downtown shops boast twinkling lights, and the town square features an enormous Christmas tree. Every Christmas Eve for the past fifty years, Ruby Harris, the owner of the historic B&B, The Christmas House, has opened her doors to strangers in need, showing them the compassion once denied to her.
When Ruby invites her family home for the holidays, including her two adult grandchildren, Charlotte and Olivia, she hopes they will be able to put the past behind them. However, her plans for reconciliation implode as the women unravel secrets from the past that force them to confront the impact they’ve had on their dysfunctional family. As Charlotte grows closer to Wyatt, the neighbor next door and a friend from the past, old memories resurface that the women would rather forget. they’re reminded of a man they want to forget.
As the clock inches closer to the New Year, can the magic of the season bring the family closer? Or will a surprise guest threaten their tentative truce and test newly formed bonds?
This light-hearted Christmas tale draws inspiration from Victoria James’s own historical fixer-upper, offering plenty of warmth and holiday cheer.