A sparkling new Christmas novel from Julia Williams.
It's Christmas, and Beth King is preparing to spend it in the bosom of her family, doing the same things they have done since time immemorial: arguing with each other, stuffing themselves silly, putting up with Grandad making them watch the Queen, and having the family row by teatime.
Despite having children of their own, Beth and her husband, Daniel, have never quite managed to escape the horrors of the Holroyd family Christmas. Beth's mother, Mary, would never countenance anyone else cooking the turkey. So the family traditions have stuck....
But this year things are going to be just a little bit different. For a start Beth's brother, bachelor Ged, appears to have a girlfriend in tow. A very pregnant girlfriend. And her sister, Lou, whose car-crash love life could be a boilerplate for every soap opera going, has turned up in floods, having been ditched on Christmas Eve - again.
Meanwhile Beth, who has spent years trying to maintain the façade of one completely in control, is facing up to the fact that she has no idea how to deal with either her teenage children or her overstressed husband. And her hitherto successful picture-book career seems to be on the skids as she tries to get to grips with her newest project, a Christmas book entitled The Littlest Angel.
As the family gather for Christmas Day, childhood tensions resurface, the teenagers bicker, and Beth wishes more than ever that she could hide away and forget the festive season once and for all. And that's before her parents drop their bombshell....
©2016 Julia Williams (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers
Praise for Julia's Christmas novels:
"Heart-warming, witty and magical.... I shed a few tears!" (Sun)
"Terrifically warm, with lovely, lively characters." (Fiona Walker)
"A brilliant read...absolutely wonderful." (Cosmochicklitan)
"Heart-warming and engaging...poignant." (OneMorePage)
"Warm and completely irresistible!" (Chick Lit Central)
That we are so locked into our own version of events is depicted well here. If I were a psychotherapist I would probably just hand my client this book & say " see it from the other person's angle". However it's a pity the author didn't have the ability to write in the 1st person for each character; going in to deeper personalisation of each individuals subjective experience . It got a bit boring the way it was written. Just a monologue of events. The narrator gabbled a bit, would slide unassociated paragraphs into one long schpeel. Poignant pauses, meaningful inflections & really thinking about what she was reading would have added life to the monologue. The narrator seemed as she was just be hell bent on rushing the story through as quickly as getting the words out would allow.
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