Twelve Days of Christmas by Debbie Macomber
I've been a bit AWOL this week, but it was much needed as it gave me some thinking time about the blog and the regularity with which I post. At the moment, I committed to myself to publish a post twice a week, reading, reviewing and writing about books. And I'm struggling with it, especially with the move of house and holiday. This has led to me not enjoying the process of reading recently, which is unheard of!
My mantra for the last few months has been 'I must read this book by tomorrow to meet x deadline' and I just can't do this anymore. So I'm scaling back slightly. I want to have time to savour a book, enjoy reading it and because I have enjoyed it so much, share it with you dear reader. I'm not going to commit to a specific post day, thus removing any deadlines. In my head this means I will post roughly once a week. But that is a very rough guestimate. I do hope you will stay with me along for the ride and I'm sure you appreciate why I'm cutting myself a little slack.
I will also, horror or horrors be deleting my Goodreads account. It's a great site, but I'm a little over the reading challenge and I'm all about simple at the moment.
I can tell you I am currently reading Death at Le Fenice by Donna Leon, savouring every word and enjoying solving the case with the gentle Guido Brunetti. But in the meantime I do have a review for you and it is a Christmassy one for you and ironically is all about a blog.
Plot (from the back of the book)
Julia is infuriated by her grumpy neighbour, Cain, who can't even be pleasant when they bump into each other.
She starts a blog in order to clinch her perfect job, and now she has a subject. Over the next 12 days, she is going to kill Cain with kindness - and Christmas cheer - and document it for all to read about.
But as the experiment goes on, Julia realises she underestimated the effect it would have on Cain and on their relationship. and things take an unexpected turn.
If you are a fan of the Christmas movies currently showing on Channel 5 in the afternoon and are on the hunt for a gentle, sweet little taster of Christmas than Debbie Macomber could well be the author for you. Having written the Mrs Miracle novels, she has written further Christmas books. This is a standalone novel and is very sweet.
Debbie Macomber, in her letter to the reader tells us that inspiration for the book came about when somebody pinched her parking spot at the mall. Full of outrage, and with a few choice words muttered under her breath, she wondered what would happen if that person were killed with kindness instead and the novel was born!
This is certainly the sentiment throughout the novel. Cain appears rude and monosyllabic, whilst Julia goes to almost Mary Poppins levels of cheeriness doing favours for Cain such as buying him his morning coffee. And gradually Cain responds, defensive at first, then puzzled and finally becoming concerned when Julia is a little down one day.
Of course this all leads to romance between the pair, which is gentle and sweet. The whole novel is packed to the gills with all the Christmas goodness and is delightful. It's great for getting you in the mood for Christmas and for all of those Christmas movies. (I've already watched the Muppet Christmas carol!)