Alaskan Holiday by Debbie Macomber
In the lead up to Christmas, I challenged myself to read #12 Books of Christmas and now also appear to be reading #12 Christmas Books of January ahem. I do enjoy reading Debbie Macomber's novels and if I am stuck for reading inspiration or just want something a little lighter, I tend to go to either Agatha Christie or Debbie Macomber. Debbie Macomber's novels are light, comforting and reminiscent of your Grandma's perfume or enjoying a slice of apple pie. In a nutshell, they are a nurturing set of books for when time calls for it. Which was how I found myself reading The Alaskan Holiday in the post-holiday slump.
Josie Avery has been working in a lakeside Alaskan lodge in the town of Ponder before starting her dream job as a sous chef to an award-winning chef in Seattle. Whilst working and living in Ponder she quickly becomes part of the community and falls for local Blacksmith, Palmer. Palmer, meanwhile, has fallen head over heels for Josie and proposes that they get married in what is the worst proposal known to man. He tells her she has good teeth for heavens sake! This is a man truly destined to buy his loved one an ironing board for Valentine's Day. Josie, totally thrown by being told she has good teeth and conscious that she is leaving Ponder the next day, refuses and leaves for her new job in the city. Palmer, with the help of his neighbour Jack, strives to win her back. Jack is desperate for Josie to stay as he is in love with her cooking! What will happen to Josie and Palmer? Will Jack enjoy good cooking again? and can Palmer propose in a more romantic way?
In the introduction, Debbie Macomber relays a visit to the Alaskan Wilderness and recounts the phrase that for single women in Alaska 'the odds are good, but the goods are odd'. We certainly get a sense of the harsh and beautiful landscape and the hardiness of the its people. Josie ends up missing the last boat back to Seattle and with the Alaskan winter arriving shortly needs to leave quickly. We get a true sense of isolation of whole communities. Josie and Palmer are very sweet and their romance is nice and easy. Jack is a hoot! Single-minded and utterly passionate about his food (and there's nothing wrong with that!).
The plot is comforting. Josie compares Seattle with Ponder life and Palmer struggles when he arrives in Seattle with the pace of life, the crowds and the lack of space. The end is predictable but sometimes, when you need it, predictable is nice.
So if you are looking for an enjoyable and light read, this is a lovely one. I really do enjoy a good Debbie Macomber.