Midnight in the Snow by Karen Swan
Welcome to Day 3 of #12booksofchristmas. I hope you have enjoyed the selections so far. In case you've missed any, I've listed them below.
My next offering is by one of my favourite authors, who are a mainstay of my bookshelves, even when we lived in our tiny home. Karen Swan publishes 2 novels a year, one in summer and one in winter, usually set around Christmas. The Christmas novels especially are always pre-ordered by me, and I sit by the letterbox until the postman has delivered it. This is how much I love these books.
Award wining director, Clover Phillips is riding high when she encounters Kit Foley, a surfer and snowboarder, as well known for controversy as he is for winning championships.
Involved in an accident that has devastating consequences for a bitter rival, Kit has never spoken about what really happened that day. Determined to find out the truth, Clover heads to the snowy slopes of the Austrian Alps, sharing a romantic winter wonderland with a man who can’t stand her.
But as she delves deeper, Clover finds herself both drawn to Kit and even more convinced he’s hiding something. Is Kit Foley really as cold as he seems.
Long time readers and fans of Karen Swan will notice a cover change. Gone is a picture of a woman wearing a red coat walking away from us. Instead we have a striking midnight blue cover depicting what could be an Austrian snow-covered town at night. Very cosy.
And indeed that setting is glorious. Clover and her team, as documentary makers opt for staying with Kit and his team at a luxury chalet provided by his sponsor. With a driver and housekeeper on hand, we are immersed in a world of beautiful homemade food, cakes, hot chocolate and warming mugs of mulled wine and it’s heaven! I could almost feel my toes sinking into sheepskin rugs as I cuddled up in the squidgy sofas.
But of course, this being Karen Swan, it is not a gentle romantic tale. At times it’s emotional. Following the accident between Cory and Kit while surfing, Swan pulls no punches about Cory’s life-changing injuries and his deep depressions. This colours Clover’s view of Kit as a murderer, with a flagrant disregard for people’s lives. A role that Kit is only too happy to live up to.
But it is obvious, that there is a whole lot more to Kit than first realised. Not only when there are flashes when his walls come down, but by the devotion of his brother and manager means that Kit may not be the ogre previously thought.
Clover is great, fiercely independent, successful, but also a good person. I found myself wanting to join her team of staff! Also, what I did enjoy was how supportive Matty was of Clover. Sometimes writers enforce a betrayal, pitting woman against woman, so it was very pleasing that this was not the case. It reinforced the idea that Clover is a good egg, intelligent enough to surround herself with equally decent people and treat them with respect and care.
The plot is great. I loved learning about the surfing and snowboarding circuit and the obvious camaraderie that exists between competitors. It felt very well-researched.
All in all, this is a great book fully of snowy scene and luxury chalet living, but with a more involved plot. I do love the Karen Swan Christmas books!
I'll be back tomorrow with an author I have only really started reading this year, but whose novels I am loving!