The Christmas Bookshop is a brand new Christmas story by Jenny Colgan. It follows two sisters who have completely different lifestyles and are reunited during the holiday season. There are trials and tribulations through out that help the characters grow and truly find themselves. Plus, the beautiful Christmas backdrop helps everything come together.
Carmen works at a department store or at least she did until the doors were recently closed for good. Broke and single she moves back in with her parents struggling to find her next move. Enter her sister Sophia who finds her a job at a struggling bookstore. Carmen moves in with her sister and nieces and nephew, and the drama begins
Carmen and Sophia are polar opposites. Sophia is a lawyer, married, and has children with another on the way. Carmen has struggled and does not have the most ambitious lifestyle. So when these two characters spend time together, there are multiple clashes. However the move time they spend together Carmen is able to form a relationship with her sister and nieces and nephew which was so nice to watch as a reader.
There is a bit of a love triangle in the story which I found completely lack luster. One of the potential love interests is an advice guru who is flashy, over the top, and can offer Carmen things she had only dreamed about. The other is a soft spoken college professor who is a Quaker and studies trees. So just like the dynamics with the sisters, the love interests are polar opposites. I just didn’t buy what the author was trying to sell me with them. There was no chemistry and Carmen’s attachment to either did not feel believable at all.
The saving grace really is the book shop. I enjoyed reading about the changes which Carmen made in order to help salvage the shop. The shop that is there when she enters is not the shop that is there at the end of the book. I also enjoyed learning the history of the bookstore and its quirky owner. I wanted to visit this bookshop and see it for myself, especially with the heartwarming Christmas decor and setting of Edinburgh.
The Christmas Bookshop is a book you cannot help but smile at due to the relationships that are formed. Yet two of these relationships had me cringing throughout. If the focus had remain on the bookshop and less on the romance, I think I would have enjoyed it better. After all the title is The Christmas Bookshop! Fans of Jenny Colgan will likely enjoy this story overall though.
Rating: 3 Stars
**I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**