Cover detail of Celebrations at the Chateau by Jo Thomas

Celebrations at the Chateau by Jo Thomas and an Announcement

Do not adjust your TV sets everyone. It is a Saturday and I am coming to you with a new review and an announcement. #12booksofchristmas is back!!!!!

In probably what has been the worst kept announcement given that I've mentioned this on the blog over 6 times, I will be coming at you over the next 2 and a half weeks with a selection of Christmas reviews. These reviews will run every week day next week and the week after, followed by 2 more. I may have gone back to work almost full time, but I do truly love doing #12booksofchristmas so it was a keeper. And in case you need any more Christmas reading inspiration, below are links to the last 2 years of #12booksofchristmas

Read the 2020 #12booksofchristmas

Read the 2021 #12booksofchristmas

In the meantime, and to wet your appetite, please find below a review of a book that nearly made it onto the list, Celebrations at the Chateau.

The Plot

When their Grandfather dies, Fliss and her sisters are astonished to inherit a French Chateau! Travelling to Normandy to visit the beautiful faded house, they excitedly make plans over delicious crepes and local cider in the town nearby.

But they soon discover the Chateau needs major work, a huge tax bill is due… and there is a sitting tenant to whom they owe a month’s allowance.

Unable to sell but strapped for cash, Fliss determines to spruce up the elegant old rooms and open a B&B. Byt why is Jacques, the local Mayor so hostile? And will Jacques and Fliss be able to pout their differences aside to save the Chateau

My Thoughts

I’ve really come to enjoy the novels of Jo Thomas which link foreign travel and a passion for food. This adds in a soupcon of Christmas as well for good measure and on the whole leaves you with a warm glow brought on by a fun time spent with family and good food.

Fliss our heroine is great, practical and recovering from a relationship which ultimately meant different things to both parties. I also loved Jason, and Charlotte, the Chatelaine of the Chateau.

The setting is beautiful and in the acknowledgements, Jo Thomas talks about being inspired by Escape to the Chateau, which follows Brits moving to France and renovating Chateaus.

The food aspect concerns the growing and eating of apples which feature heavily in a number of recipes. As an extra Brucie bonus, Jo Thomas has helpfully added some recipes I can confirm that the Normandy Chicken is de-lic-ious.

The story is lovely. It is a time for healing for all of our characters and the town they live in. This is a lovely novel, set at Christmas and set in a foreign land, it’s so cosy.