Here it is, at long last, the very, very, BIG Christmas reads list. Following on from last year I’ve restricted it to titles that have been published in 2020. I have found a number of titles published this year in paperback that were originally published in eBook format last year. I’ve not included these as I would have (hopefully) picked up the eBook edition last year. You can take a look at previous lists here.
Before some of you get disappointed I should say that obviously I couldn’t include everything (even if I had an easy way of tracking them down – if you know one please let me know). I’ve been a bit more generous this year as usually I use the guide as only including titles that I might read, though largely that proviso still applies. Consequently here’s what you won’t find (unless they’ve accidentally slipped through). There’s no Amish, cowboy, erotic, tycoons, horror or paranormal Christmases. I’ve also passed on Regency and ‘clean’ Christmases, and in the name of balance there’s no ‘dirty’ ones either. I’ve excluded short novella’s but please check the page count on anything you opt for if in doubt. There are possibly some titles I haven’t included purely because either Amazon or the publisher (not sure who’s responsible) didn’t include the page count, so I erred on the side of caution – but trust me you’ll still have plenty to choose from.
As ever, I am always amazed at how many Christmas books are published each year. I became cover blind about a month ago, they all started to look the same and I couldn’t remember what I’d included and what I hadn’t – thankfully I’ve devised an easy way of resolving that issue at least. There were some covers/titles that I won’t forget in a hurry though, so not in the list, is All I Want for Christmas is a Thug, Tangle My Tinsel, or any of the plethora of Widow’s Christmases, these can be further sub divided into Amish widows, Regency widows and even desperate widows. I’ve had to recheck that sentence several times to make sure I didn’t say windows! I apologise in advance to anyone who reads the Mills and Boon, Innocent Christmas Brides series but I had to laugh at Christmas Babies for the Italian. That title suggests somebody wasn’t quite as innocent as they pretended or they had the longest pregnancy on record making it stretch from Christmas to Christmas!
Anyway, back to business. This is going to take more than one cuppa, so either make a pot/cafetiere or pace yourself. I’ve put my newly acquired WordPress skills to use so you can go from the following index to the relevant category. The categories are intended to try and split up what was a very long list and some categories are more relevant than others. It’s not foolproof as I haven’t read the books but it’s better than one long unordered list. If you’re lucky by the time I’ve finished this post I might also have mastered how to let you jump back to the index – fingers crossed.
(NB As an Amazon Associate, Bookshop and Hive Affiliate I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases)
Christmas by the Sea (10)
(For bargain hunters those titles which are currently 99p on Kindle are highlighted with a red Amazon button – but as prices can & will change please double check before purchasing)
A Cornish Christmas
The Cornish Cream Tea Christmas by Cressida McLaughlin
Hannah Swan is looking forward to Christmas for the first time in years. Her new job as an eco-consultant is taking her – and her geeky colleague, Noah – to the beautiful Cornish village of Porthgolow for the first time.
They’re are helping the Crystal Waters Hotel to ramp up its green credentials, though after a bumpy journey, Hannah can’t shake off the feeling that Porthgolow is strangely familiar. Never able to resist a mystery, her interest is piqued when the hotel’s staff and customers report odd noises and sightings, believing the hotel to be haunted.
When bad weather cuts off Porthgolow, Hannah and Noah are looking at a Cornish Christmas. It gives them plenty of time to work out what is really going on, but will their yuletide escape send shivers up their spines? Or will it be as warm and toasty as a glass of mulled wine?
Holly’s Christmas Secret by Kirsty Ferry
Once upon a Cornish Christmas …
It’s almost Christmas at the Pencradoc estate in Cornwall which means that, as usual, tea room owner Sorcha Davies is baking up a festive storm. And this year Sorcha is hoping her mince pies will be going down a treat at ‘The Spirit of Christmas Past’ exhibition being organised at the house by new local antiques dealer, Locryn Dyer.
But as Locryn and Sorcha spend more time together, they begin to uncover a very special story of Christmas past that played out at Pencradoc more than a century before, involving a certain ‘Lady’ Holly Sawyer, a festive dinner party and a magical secret encounter with a handsome author …
A Very Cornish Christmas by Beth Good
Working all hours as a midwife, Caroline isn’t looking for love. All she wants to do with her precious free time is have fun and enjoy her freedom, not settle down.
But her sister, home from LA with her film-star husband and a baby on the way, has other plans. As Caroline helps the happily-marrieds settle back into life in Cornwall, she finds herself being thrown repeatedly together with their friend Brodie – sexy but a little aloof, and not at all her type. Or so she tells herself.
With the shocking discovery of a long-hidden family secret, Caroline’s life is upturned once again. Can she right herself, and her family, in time for a very Cornish Christmas…?
No Room at the Little Cornish Inn by Nancy Barone
There’s magic in the Cornish air this Christmas…
Rosie Anderson was hoping to whisk her young son Danny away for a lovely Christmas with family, far from the hustle and bustle of her life in London. But then her boss at the head office – aka Susan the Sacker – suddenly assigns her to go in incognito and save a tiny inn in Cornwall from being closed permanently. Rosie doesn’t know why The Old Bell Inn is performing so badly but it’s on her to sort it out!
Hours in the car later, Rosie arrives at the inn to find she’s been double booked – there are no rooms left. And she isn’t there for more than a minute before she’s butting heads with the manager, Irishman Mitchell Fitzpatrick. He seems to dislike her on sight, so it’s confusing that he seems to get on so well with Danny… But if he’s as terrible as his reputation, Rosie will have to be the one to fire him.
This really isn’t the Christmas Rosie was dreaming of. But maybe, just maybe, it could be a whole lot more…
Christmas at the Cornish Confetti Agency by Daisy James
It’s Christmas at The Cornish Confetti Agency!
When Lexie Harrington is asked to choreograph Phoebe and Sam’s Christmas-themed wedding, she can’t wait to create the perfect winter wonderland – elegantly dressed fir trees, glossy garlands of holly and mistletoe, baskets of yule logs and pine cones, and the mouth-watering fragrance of gingerbread, cinnamon sticks and warm mulled wine floating through the air.
With handsome wedding columnist-cum-fledgling scriptwriter Theo Barker at her side, she’s confident that she can create the perfect festive ambience the bride and groom have been dreaming of since their engagement in the Swiss Alps; no rampant hosepipes, no mechanical mice, no confetti-filled hairdryers.
But this is The Cornish Confetti Agency, and the words ‘plain-sailing’ and ‘hassle-free’ do not feature in the promotional brochure. So, when a much-loved portrait of the groom’s father is adorned with pirate eye-patches and black plastic moustaches, and his expensive cologne is switched for toilet cleaner, Lexie and Theo must once again don their metaphorical deerstalkers and unravel the mystery before the wedding dissolves into Christmas-themed chaos and calamity.
A Four-Legged Christmas
A Dog’s Perfect Christmas by A Bruce Cameron
The perfect, feel-good holiday gift from W. Bruce Cameron, the number one New York Times bestselling author of the A Dog’s Purpose series.
The problems fracturing the Goss family as Christmas approaches are hardly unique, though perhaps they are handling them a little differently than most people might. But then a true emergency arises, one with the potential to ruin not only Christmas but everything holding the family together.
Is the arrival of a lost puppy yet another problem in the string of calamities facing them, or could the dog be just what they all need?
(I have to say that if I was gifted a furry little Jack Russell that would be my perfect Christmas)
Alfie the Christmas Cat by Rachel Wells
Christmas is around the corner, and Alfie and George can’t wait. This year, the residents of Edgar road have come together to put on a festive show and raise money for a local homeless shelter.
As December approaches, plans are in full swing: auditions are being held, props are being built, Alfie and George are rehearsing daily, and everyone is having a very merry time.
But then things start to go wrong. And when the residents arrive at the theatre one morning to discover their set has been trashed, it becomes clear someone is trying to sabotage their performance.
Alfie and George know it’s up to them to find the culprit and save the day. Because, after all, the show must go on…
Home for Christmas by Florence McNicoll
Kathy Brentwood is good at keeping it together – or so it seems to the people around her. But really, struggling with grief after the death of her husband, Kathy’s life has become small. Her days are organised, her house is neat, but she’s desperately lonely – and with her son starting to build a life of his own, she isn’t sure where she fits anymore.
The Christmas Menagerie by Minna Howard
Amelia usually loves Christmas, but this year is her first one alone since her husband passed away – though she’s not quite by herself. Somehow, she’s been lumbered with a menagerie of pets over the holidays, no thanks to the new village vet closing the local kennels.
Between a parrot, two tortoises and god-knows-how-many baby mice, Amelia ends up seeing a lot more of Jules the vet than she planned to. And despite her neighbours’ fury for the man who shut down a local institution, she can’t help enjoying every moment she spends with Jules.
She tells herself it doesn’t really matter as surely Jules will be driven out of the village by this time next year. But as Amelia’s about to discover …love isn’t just for Christmas!
The Twelve Dogs of Christmas by Lizzie Shane
Pine Hollow has everything Ally Gilmore could wish for in a holiday break: gently falling snow in a charming small town and time with her family. Then she learns some Grinch has pulled the funding for her family’s rescue shelter, and now she has only four weeks to find new homes for a dozen dogs! But when she confronts her Scroogey councilman nemesis, Ally finds he’s far more reasonable – and handsome – than she ever expected.
As the guardian of his dog-obsessed ten-year-old niece, Ben West doesn’t have time to build a cuddly reputation. But he does feel guilty about the shelter closing. So he proposes a truce with Ally, agreeing to help her adopt out the pups. As the two spend more time together, the town’s gossip is spreading faster than Santa’s sleigh on Christmas Eve. And soon Ben is hoping he can convince Ally that Pine Hollow is her home for the holidays…and the whole year through.
Christmas Across the Pond
Christmas at Fireside Cabins by Jenny Hale
Christmas is always tough for Lila Evans. Instead of being with her loved ones, she’s all alone, and reminded of the heartbreaking time when she lost her father. It’s no wonder that, this year, Lila’s escaping Nashville. She’s in search of a home away from home––and the countryside retreat of Fireside Cabins sounds like the perfect place.
But it turns out that Pinewood Hills, tucked in the snow-topped Tennessee mountains, doesn’t offer her much of a small-town welcome. Stopping at the local coffee shop for a much-needed peppermint latte, the rugged, surly owner Theo Perry gives her an icy reception that even his piercing blue eyes can’t melt.
Unfortunately, you can’t avoid anyone in the quaint village, which means that Lila bumps into him everywhere… To her surprise, on the rare occasions he does smile, it feels like sunshine on a cold winter’s day––it feels like coming home. So Lila makes it her mission to warm up frosty Theo, even if that does feel like she’s hoping for a Christmas miracle.
With nothing––and no one––waiting for her back in Nashville, could Pinewood Hills give Lila the ultimate Christmas gift––the family she’s always longed for? And, with a dusting of festive magic, spiced cider and sugarplum pie, could this be the first holiday she’s not alone?
Christmas at Moonshine Hollow by Angela Britnell
Mistletoe and moonshine: a Christmas match made in heaven?
Moonshine Hollow’s famous ‘Lightning Flash’ might be an acquired taste, although the same could be said for moonshine distillery owner Cole Landon, what with his workaholic habits and ‘Scrooge’ tendencies when it comes to all things Christmassy.
But when Jenna Pendean from Cornwall pays a visit to Cole’s family-run distillery in Tennessee during the holiday season, will Cole’s cynicism about the existence of Christmas miracles be put to the test?
Christmas in Angel Harbor by Jeannie Moon
This Christmas, she’s hoping for a miracle…
Twenty-five years ago, Jane Fallon put her rising career on hold to take over her family’s bookstore after the death of her father. Throughout the years, she’s transformed Angel Harbor Books into a place of comfort for her and her daughter, but when her landlord announces the building has been sold, Jane is faced with sudden uncertainty. If the bookstore is gone, what will she do?
As a young man, Dan Gallo couldn’t get out of Angel Harbor fast enough. Now a best-selling novelist, Dan returns home after a tragedy derails his career. His first stop is his favorite teenage hangout—the local bookstore. It’s almost exactly how he remembers it. But the girl who once worked there is now a beautiful woman whose smarts and spirit inspire him to write again, and open his heart to new possibilities.
With her world threatening to fall apart, Dan hopes that with the help of the town—and some Christmas magic—he can get Jane to see how important she is to the people of Angel Harbor…and him.
Christmas at Holiday House by RaeAnne Thayne
A Christmas Wish…
Abby Powell needs a fresh start for herself and her son. Agreeing to nurse her best friend’s grandmother is the perfect escape. Abby knows her friend’s grandmother, Winnie, lives in a gorgeous sprawling Victorian mansion, Holiday House, in an historic Colorado ski town. What better place to create the perfect Christmas for her son.
As soon as she arrives in the charming town, Silver Bells, Abby falls in love with Winnie. She is less enamored with Winnie’s grandson, Ethan Lancaster as it becomes immediately clear that he doesn’t want her there. But also clear is that Winnie doesn’t need medical care. She does need Abby’s help, though. In just under three weeks, Holiday House will open to the public for a week of Christmas tours, and the entire house needs to be decorated.
Amidst the epic festive task, Abby and Ethan grow closer. But can Abby fall in love when she’s leaving right after Christmas? Underneath the Christmas lights Abby must decide if a Christmas at Holiday House has given her everything she needs for Christmas … and forever.
Jingle All the Way by Debbie Macomber
Everly Lancaster always dreamed of leaving behind her hometown in rural Illinois, but her new life running a burgeoning startup in Chicago leaves little time for friends . . . or a holiday.
When a massive snowstorm hits, Everly’s mother urges the workaholic to come home for Christmas, but she hesitates to return to the life that she tried so hard to escape. Searching for other holiday plans, Everly tasks her assistant with booking her a cruise – an ideal escape. She embarks on a week-long tour of the Amazon guided by charming naturalist Asher Adams, but slowly realises just how important her relationships are to her.
Everly makes a bold decision to abandon her lonely holiday plans – but can she make it home in time for Christmas Day?
One Snowy Week in Springhollow by Lucy Knott
When old friends return, sparks ignite this Christmas in Springhollow…
Tomboy Scarlett thought Devon would be her best friend forever. He was the only person in Springhollow who supported her ambitious artist dreams. But then one winter, Devon and his parents disappear without warning to start a new life in NYC and a devastated Scarlett is left alone to face her high-school bullies and overbearing mother.
Fast-forward ten years: Scarlett is playing it safe in her childhood village with a dull PA job and a wardrobe that passes her mother’s old-fashioned standards. Meanwhile, Devon is a Hollywood heartthrob, starring in the latest superhero blockbuster. And he’s finally coming home for Christmas…
Scarlett can’t help blaming her former best friend for the way her life has turned out, but Devon’s cheeky charm and gorgeous smile prove difficult to resist. Devon always did make her feel on top of the world, but Scarlett knows her heart isn’t racing just because she has her friend back – is it mistletoe madness, or is she seeing Devon in a completely new light?
Scarlett hasn’t taken a risk in years… but this Christmas of second chances could finally be her time to shine.
Mistletoe & Mr. Right by Sarah Morgenthaler
How the moose (almost) stole Christmas.
Lana Montgomery is everything the quirky small town of Moose Springs, Alaska can’t stand: a rich socialite with dreams of changing things for the better. But Lana’s determined to prove that she belongs…even if it means trading her stilettos for snow boots and tracking one of the town’s hairiest Christmas mysteries: the Santa Moose, an antlered Grinch hell-bent on destroying every bit of holiday cheer (and tinsel) it can sink its teeth into.
And really…how hard could it be?
The last few years have been tough on Rick Harding, and it’s not getting any easier now that his dream girl’s back in town. When Lana accidentally tranquilizes him instead of the Santa Moose, it’s clear she needs help, fast…and this could be his chance to finally catch her eye. It’s an all-out Christmas war, but if they can nab that darn moose before it destroys the town, Rick and Lana might finally find a place where they both belong…together.
Christmas in Moonlight Falls by Trish Evans
If Christmas is a time of families coming together, why is this family falling apart?Christmas wasn’t supposed to be this way. Not for Annie Morgan. Not after all that she’s been through. Still recovering from a tragic accident eleven months ago that claimed the life of her husband and left her young daughter paralyzed, Annie has been trying to re-assemble the broken pieces of her life. Now, with Christmas fast approaching in the picturesque, snow-tinged village of Moonlight Falls, Annie wants nothing more than to get away from her shattered world.A nerve-wracking undercurrent of family secrets has made things even worse — the unknown truth of her mother’s health, the guarded marital issues plaguing her sister, and the perilous events in Afghanistan surrounding her brother, a U.S. Marine. The safe and secure world in which Annie Morgan was raised — a world filled with love, hope and happiness – has been permanently eroded by unforeseen events. Can it ever be re-built?Then, just when all seems lost, a new, unanticipated relationship begins, one that not only gives Annie hope, but one that will change her life and the lives of those around her, in a profound way. Ultimately, this is a story of loss and recovery, love and hope – as Christmas reunites a broken family in the charming village of Moonlight Falls.
The Winter Berry House by Caroline Flynn
It’s the beginning of December, and the town of Port Landon is covered with snow and glowing with festive cheer. Working at the Port diner, Kait Davenport is counting down to Christmas the same way she does every year, serving fruitcake and cinnamon flavored coffee.
But when she unexpectedly runs into her high school sweetheart, Branch Sterling, she knows this Christmas is going to be different.
The holiday season marks the first anniversary of his beloved Grandma Addie’s passing, and Branch must face the task he has been putting off for so long… It’s time to return to the house he’s inherited – the house he once called home – and make peace with his loss.
Branch is determined to lay his painful memories to rest and finally move on. But he has rekindled a fire in Kait’s heart, and when she offers to help him recreate Grandma Addie’s legacy Christmas dinner for the whole town, their hope for a second chance burns bright.
Will Kait convince Branch that he belongs in Port Landon, and that their love is just as strong as their Christmas spirit?
Christmas by the Sea
Winter at Wishington Bay by Maxine Morrey
Eighteen months ago, Sophia Jones finally walked out on her unhappy life.
With a tricky divorce ongoing, money is tight and so when friends offer her a housekeeping job while they’re away travelling, she accepts.
Nate McKinley is hesitant when his brother, Gabe, offers him the use of their home in the picturesque village of Wishington Bay. But he has a book to a write and an imploded marriage to recover from, so maybe a change of scene is exactly what he needs.
As Wishington Bay works its magic, friendship blossoms between Sophia and Nate. For Nate, finally feeling able to be himself with someone who is honest and down to earth is a revelation.
But Sophia has a secret and a jealous colleague is determined to blow her cover. Can she really keep her old life in the past or is it destined to destroy this new, happy one too?
Take a trip back to Wishington Bay this winter and find out…
Christmas at the Little Waffle Shack by Helen J Rolfe
Heritage Cove is in full swing for the festive season and as the temperature dips, who will be lucky in love this Christmas?
It’s December in Heritage Cove and along with the village Christmas tree, frosty mornings and the promise of the most wonderful time of the year, the new waffle shack is about to open. And its owner isn’t a stranger to the Cove, because after all this time, Daniel is back to make amends with his brother Harvey – as well as a few other locals he might have offended along the way.
Fairly new to the village, local blacksmith Lucy has kept up the pretence of being with her ex for the sake of his gran but she’s fed up with all the lies. Determined to come clean and live the life she wants to live, she’s devastated to find that her attraction to Daniel is tainted by the fact he’s hiding a few things of his own. And his secrets are ones she isn’t sure she’ll ever be able to get past.
Heritage Cove is full of friendship and community; it’s a welcoming place people visit and never want to leave. But will it work its magic for Daniel and Lucy?
Christmas at Aunt Elsie’s by Emily Harvale
A distant relative. A blizzard. A Christmas of surprises.
Lottie Short isn’t looking forward to Christmas. Her boyfriend has dumped her and she’s also lost her job. Lottie and her beloved spaniel, Merry, are facing the festive season – and a bleak future, alone.
But a Christmas card and round-robin letter give Lottie hope. And as the first snowflakes fall, she’s on her way to the tiny seaside village of Seahorse Harbour to visit her distant aunt. She’ll stay in a cosy B&B and get some bracing, sea air. That might lift her spirits.
What she doesn’t plan for is a blizzard, her aunt taking a fall, or the dramas unfolding all around her. But at least there’s a warm welcome at Aunt Elsie’s cottage … and a roaring log fire in the village pub.
That’s not all that might bring a rosy glow to Lottie’s cheeks. Asher Bryant, the local vet is pretty hot, and Lottie also hits it off with another visitor to Seahorse Harbour. This festive season might be better than she hoped.
And when Lottie gets more than one surprise this Christmas, perhaps she and Merry won’t be spending the New Year on their own.
Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe by Morton S Gray
Run away to the little beach café this Christmas …
Five years ago at Christmas, solicitor Justin Sadler made the decision to leave his comfortable existence behind and move to the coast. Since then, he’s tried his best to ignore the festive season and, as he sits in the little beach café and reflects on that fateful night when his life was turned upside down, he expects his fifth Christmas alone to be no different to any of the others since he made his escape.
But when he encounters a mystery woman on the beach, he soon realises he may have found a fellow runaway and kindred spirit. Could Justin finally be ready to move on and let Christmas into his life again?
Starry Skies Over the Chocolate Pot Cafe by Jessica Redland
Everyone is getting into the festive spirit on Castle Street – snow is falling, fairy lights are glistening and Christmas shopping is underway.
But for Tara Porter, owner of thriving cafe, The Chocolate Pot, this is the most difficult time of the year. From the outside, Tara is a successful businesswoman and pillar of the community. Behind closed doors, she is lonely.
With a lifetime of secrets weighing on her shoulders, she has retreated from all friends, family and romance, and shut her real self away from the world. Afterall, if you don’t let them in, they can’t hurt you. She’s learnt that the hard way.
But as the weight of her past becomes heavier and an unexpected new neighbour moves onto the street – threatening the future of her cafe – Tara begins to realise that maybe it’s time to finally let people back in and confront her history. It could just change her life forever…
Starry Skies Over The Chocolate Pot Café was originally released as Christmas at The Chocolate Pot Café. Now re-released with a new title and new cover, this version has been freshly edited and features several new chapters.
A Pretty Beach Christmas by Polly Babbington
It’s Christmas in the beautiful little seaside town of Pretty Beach and it’s doused in twinkly lights and festive cheer. The delightfully romantic story continues as the town dresses up for Christmas and reels us in for all the festive feels.
We follow along with the journey of Juliette Sparkles, resident midwife, who after a horrid divorce and a few years of ups and downs, suddenly has a very nice piece of luck come her way and she moves to Seapocket Lane.
There’s the Pretty Beach Christmas Dance, all the weird and wonderful Pretty Beach Christmas traditions and, well, there may just be an ever-so handsome new resident in town.
Will Juliette surprise not only herself, but all the locals in Pretty Beach and get everything she’s dreamt of this Christmas or will she end up back to square one?
If you love romance at Christmas, an utterly gorgeous snow-filled setting, catching up with the plethora of heart-warming characters of Pretty Beach, and a dash of intrigue to curl up on the sofa with and dream, then you’ll just adore A Pretty Beach Christmas.
Immerse yourself back into the cosy little town by the sea, guaranteed to brighten your day and leave you pondering a new life on the coast.
Winter Wishes at Swallowtail Bay by Katie Ginger
Grab your cosiest jumper and escape to the beautiful Swallowtail Bay!
Christmas and romance are in the air and Nell is obsessed! She can’t stop watching her favourite Christmas romcoms and dreaming of the day when she meets her own romantic hero, especially as she is hosting the first ever wedding at her small hotel, Holly Lodge.
Nell’s best friend, Tom, has been in love with her ever since they met. But Nell has never seen him that way, and he’s always kept his feelings a secret in case it ruins their friendship.
After the opening of the glamorous Langdon Mansion Hotel in the bay, Nell’s hotel is struggling for survival and she must fight, with Tom’s help, to keep Holly Lodge open. Can the magic of Christmas help two old friends save Holly Lodge and open Nell’s eyes to a love that was always there the whole time?
The Boardwalk by the Sea by Georgina Troy
Zip up your puffer coat, winter has arrived!When Lexi Davies discovers that her father has sold the fishermen’s cottages she runs as holiday lets and where she also lives, she is heartbroken. Then Oliver Whimsy arrives at the boardwalk and announces that he is the new owner and Lexi realises that the future she was looking forward to enjoying at her cottages is over. Oliver might be handsome, wealthy and very sexy, but he’s new to the island and has already made a terrible impression on the locals. When the Scottish entrepreneur offers Lexi a job, she’s unsure whether she should accept. Unfortunately, she has little alternative if she wants to keep a roof over her head for the winter.
As Lexi gets to know him better, she discovers there’s far more to Oliver Whimsy than she or anyone else had imagined. Just what is the heartache Oliver’s trying so desperately to hide? And why was he so determined to buy the cottages? Lexi wants to find out, but in order to do so she’s going to have to spend rather a lot of time with him…
Christmas in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May
Meet old and new characters in the Bay for Christmas fun and frolics.
With both the Corner Shop and Cockleberry Café in safe hands, Rosa turns her attention to Ned’s Gift, the charity set up in memory of the great-grandfather whose legacy turned her life around.
Over at the Ship Hotel, Lucas has his work cut out with his devious new girlfriend and the mystery poisoning of an anonymous hotel inspector. Will the hotel still get its 3-star Seaside Rosette?
Will Mary find true love at last? Can Titch cope with the demands of the shop and being heavily pregnant. And can Rosa, with a baby of her own, pull off the Cockleberry Bay Charity Christmas Concert in time?
Christmas at the Island Hotel by Jenny Colgan
On the tiny Scottish island of Mure, Christmas preparations are even more hectic than usual . ..
Flora Mackenzie is worried about her brother. Fintan hasn’t got over the death of his partner, Coltan, and Flora thinks he needs a project.
The Rock – the rambling, disused hotel on the tip of the island – was Coltan’s passion project before he died. With Flora’s help, Fintan is going to get the hotel up and running in time for Christmas, transforming it into a festive haven of crackling log fires and delicious food. But running a hotel, they are about to discover, is not that easy. Especially when their motley staff includes a temperamental French chef, a spoilt Norwegian kitchen boy who can’t peel a potato without mutilating his own hand and a painfully shy kitchen assistant who blushes when anyone speaks to her.
Can they pull it together in time for the big opening?
And can Flora help her family find happiness this Christmas?
Christmas, Christmas, Christmas
A Christmas Wedding at the Castle by Eliza J Scott
Do you believe in fate? Livvie Weatherill does…
This time last year, if anyone had told Livvie Weatherill she’d have fallen in love and would be making plans for her Christmas wedding to Zander Gillespie, she would have laughed in their face. If they’d gone on to say they’d be planning to have their wedding at the imposing Danskelfe Castle, she’d have laughed even louder!
But it would seem fate had plans for her…
Since moving to the pretty moorland village of Lytell Stangdale Livvie is happier than she’s ever been. She’s living with Zander and she’s working at her dream job as a wedding dress designer at Romantique with her friends, Kitty and Violet. It’s fair to say, she’s enjoying immersing herself in village life, from romantic walks in the countryside, to meeting friends at the quaint Sunne Inne. And she can’t think of anything better than rounding off the day cosying up with Zander.
Life is sweet.
Her blossoming friendship with Freda Easton, the endearing but reclusive elderly lady who lives down the lane, has taken everyone by surprise. But Freda has a secret and, in a turn of events no one could predict, she finds herself grateful for Livvie’s fierce loyalty, cementing their friendship further.
Just when things seem to be running smoothly, a face from the past arrives on the doorstep casting a shadow over Livvie’s wedding plans. Adding to the drama, an icy blast of Arctic air brings heavy snowfall to the village, covering the moors in a thick blanket of snow.
Is their love strong enough to withstand the challenges thrown at them? Will they get their magical Christmas wedding?
Christmas at Lock Keeper’s Cottage by Lucy Coleman
Imogen Tolliman never knew her mother. And when an accident robs Immi of her father too, she goes to live with her grandfather, Tollie, in his picturesque lock-keeper’s cottage by the Aysbury marina.
Tollie is the star of the Santa Ahoy Special each Christmas – a festive boat ride along the canal that enthralls both children and adults alike. And as Immi grows up, she starts to appreciate the magical community she is lucky enough to live in.
When Immi meets Gray Adams, she instantly realises he’s someone special. And as their relationship gets serious, they start to plan for the Christmas to beat all Christmases.
But as the day approaches, and the romantic snow showers turn into blizzards, their dream of a Christmas to remember, looks set to be one they’ll never forget – for all the wrong reasons. Can they salvage the festivities, or will old secrets that are finally uncovered turn Immi’s life upside down forever?
Holly’s Christmas Countdown by Suzie Tullett
Holly has been planning Christmas in the Caribbean with her boyfriend Jeremy for the last few months and welcomes the chance to do something different for the festive season. But when Holly catches Jeremy in bed with another woman her hopes are shattered.
Faced with no other option, it appears Holly is going to have to spend Christmas with her eccentric parents. Something she was keen to avoid.
After a night out, drowning her sorrows with her friend, she has a chance encounter with a handsome stranger, Fin, who provides her with an opportunity to have a Christmas staycation away from her parents.
But when it turns out that there is more to Fin than meets the eye, and the attraction between him and Holly grows, it looks like she is on the cusp of happiness again.
Will Holly get the Christmas she craved and the man of her dreams?
Hopeful Hearts at Glendale Hall by Victoria Walters
What happens when love takes you to unexpected places?
Heather Douglas appears to have it all. But living on a farm in the Scottish Highlands with her partner, Rory Fraser, all while bringing up their adorable toddler, Harry, isn’t easy. As a former librarian, Heather is worried that she’ll never fully fit into life on Fraser Farm. And after the death of her beloved mum eight years ago, Heather feels lost, as well as guilty for holding back accepting Rory’s marriage proposal because she can’t imagine her wedding without her mother.
So when ex-boyfriend, Stewart, appears in the village of Glendale, it’s a shock to the system. The man who broke her heart years ago now has big plans for the neighbouring farm and wants Heather to be part of the development. Knowing that she’s living a very different life to the one they had planned at university leaves Heather wondering if she has made the right choices since she and Stewart broke up. Especially when things start to go very wrong on the farm …
This Christmas, Heather will need to face her fears and let go of the past or risk losing everything. She will need love, faith, and a whole lot of hope!
In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren
It’s the most wonderful time of the year . . . but not for Maelyn Jones. She’s living with her parents, hates her going-nowhere job and has just made a romantic error of epic proportions.
But perhaps worst of all, this is the last Christmas Mae will be at her favourite place in the world – the snowy cabin where she and her family have spent every holiday since she was born. Mentally melting down as she drives away for the final time, Mae throws out what she thinks is a simple plea to the universe: Please. Show me what will make me happy.
The next thing she knows, everything goes black . . . When Mae gasps awake, she’s back on an airplane, beginning the same holiday all over again. With one hilarious disaster after another sending her back to the plane, Mae must figure out how to break free of the strange time loop – and finally get her true love under the mistletoe.
Christmas Island by Natalie Normann
In the bleak midwinter…
A really frosty wind is making Holly’s life absolutely miserable
After all the years of hard work it took Londoner Holly Greene to become a doctor, now it could all be taken away and she only has herself to blame. She’s retreating to her brother’s rustic home on an island off the coast of Norway to lick her wounds. Only, it’s the middle of winter and icy slush plus endless darkness isn’t exactly the cheery, festive getaway she had imagined.
Nearly stumbling off the edge of a cliff in the dark, Holly is saved by Frøy, a yellow-eyed cat of fearsome but fluffy proportions, and his owner – grouchy, bearded recluse, Tor. Tor has his own problems to face but the inexplicable desire to leave a bag of freshly baked gingerbread men on Holly’s doorstep is seriously getting in the way of his hermit routine.
Call it kindness, call it Christmas, but Holly’s arrival means midwinter has never looked less bleak.
One Winter’s Night by Kiley Dunbar
It’s autumn in beautiful Stratford-Upon-Avon and Kelsey Anderson is enjoying her new life in her adopted town. Her Shakespearean tour guide days behind her, she’s now opened her own photography studio and loved up with boyfriend Jonathan – even if a long-distance relationship is sometimes lonely.
When best friend Mirren Imrie moves down from Scotland, Kelsey is delighted to have her friend at her side – and as the nights turn colder, Mirren throws herself into dating, until she finds herself growing closer to sexy journalist, Adrian Armadale. But when Mirren uncovers a long-buried scandal while working at the local newspaper, her big scoop might throw Kelsey’s – and Jonathan’s – life upside down. Will she choose her career over her friends’ happiness?
And when Jonathan returns from America and discovers the secrets Mirren has uncovered about his family, it throws his relationship with Kelsey onto shaky ground. Can they find their way back to love, before it becomes the winter of their discontent?
Christmas at Willoughby Close by Kate Hewitt
Belinda ‘Lindy’ Jamison has moved to the Cotswolds for a fresh start and to open a dancing school—her lifelong dream. Pushing forty and still looking for Mr. Right, Lindy is determined to no longer wait for happiness but to reach for it with both hands. So she packs up her life and heads south to Wychwood-on-Lea to start up her school.
Soon Lindy has a motley crew of would-be dancers. But her most intriguing pupil is Roger Wentworth, a fortysomething bachelor with a shy and awkward manner, but a heart of blazing gold. When Lindy decides to showcase her pupils in a Christmas show, Roger is deeply reluctant but finally agrees. Lindy longs to bring Roger out of his shell—but she didn’t expect to fall in love with him in the process.
Soon it is Roger teaching her how two lonely hearts might be able to embrace a second chance this Christmas…if they can just believe they’re both worthy of love.
The Imperfect Christmas by Tanya Jean Russell
How do you pick yourself up when everything is falling apart…?
Twenty-five-year-old Maggie Green thought she had her life on the perfect track: a long-term relationship, a successful career in finance and a swanky apartment in London.
But then everything falls apart.
The company she has worked so hard for makes her redundant, and she gets dumped on the same day.
Not to mention the worrying call she’s received from her doctor.
With her pride in tatters, Maggie returns to her family home for the Christmas period. A home she hasn’t returned to for two years.
No one knows the real reason why she hasn’t been back. No one, that is, except the one person who she is most nervous about seeing again.
Will Maggie make peace with her past? Can she find love this Christmas?
Or will more obstacles be thrown in her way…?
A Winter’s Dream by Sophie Claire
Liberty has never been a risk-taker. She loves the routine of her quiet life in the charming village of Willowbrook, with her Labrador, Charlie. But the arrival of a mysterious gift prompts Liberty to make some changes: starting with a daily challenge to say yes to everything for the month of December…
Fearless and independent, Alex could hardly be a less obvious fit for peaceful village life. But after an accident cuts short his promising motorcycling career, he finds himself in Willowbrook in search of new direction.
When the pair become unlikely housemates, sparks fly at Damselfly Cottage. Will living together prove impossible – especially when the first snow falls? Or, cut off from the outside world, can they help each other find what it takes to be brave this Christmas?
Christmas with Cary by Sharon Booth
You never forget your first love.
Molly’s spent every Christmas she can remember surrounded by her family. But this year is different. This year, Molly’s all alone in a strange town. She’s left her family behind, and she’s not sure where she can call home any longer.
All Molly has with her are a few clothes in a suitcase, and a collection of her old friend’s Cary Grant films. Except, there’s one more thing she’s brought along – the whole reason for her Christmas visit.
In her possession is a small, crumpled piece of paper, and on it is written the address of the love of her life.
Molly and Cary have had many chances over the years, but somehow life kept getting in the way and they always ended up apart once more. Yet Molly has never forgotten the first man she gave her heart to, and now she has one last chance to win him back.
But will Cary welcome her home, or will he tell her what she dreads to hear – that they’ve had their chance, and it’s all too late. That’s if she can even find him…
One Kiss Before Christmas by Emma Jackson
Could it be the start of her happy ever after?
Ashleigh could use a little Christmas magic. She’s still living in Brighton with her Nan – who could give the Grinch lessons in how to be miserable – her acting career has been reduced to playing one of Santa’s elves, and not even the prospect of a friend’s winter wedding can cheer her up…
That is until Olivier, the gorgeous French chef, reappears in her life. Or more accurately, next door.
When they were teenagers, Olivier would spend every Christmas with his mother, who just happens to be Ash’s neighbour and owner of the best chocolate shop in England.
If anyone can bring a little sparkle back to Ash’s life, it’s Olivier. All she needs is one kiss before Christmas…
The Canal Boat Cafe Christmas by Cressida McLaughlin
A Christmas special continuing the charming and heart-warming story of The Canal Boat Café.
Summer and Mason take their upbeat and feelgood Canal Boat Café to London for Christmas.
Summer thinks this will give them a chance to find out if they’re ready to take the next step in their relationship, and they embark on a magical journey on the canal all the way to the scenic beauty of Little Venice.
But their idyllic winter excursion is thrown into turmoil when the canal freezes over and an unexpected visitor appears on the scene. Are Summer and Mason facing the Big Freeze in more ways than one? Or will this be one Winter Warmer that they’ll never forget?
A Perfect Paris Christmas by Mandy Baggot
United in grief. Pushed apart by tragedy.
Keeley Andrews knows more than anyone that you only live once. So when she receives an invitation to spend two weeks in Paris, all expenses paid, she jumps at the chance.
Ethan Bouchard has had the worst eighteen months of his life. He’s ready to give up on everything, including his hotel chain. So when he meets Keeley, it simply isn’t the right time.
As Keeley and Ethan continue to bump into each other on the romantic Parisian streets, they can’t help but wonder whether this is fate telling them to let go of the past and leap into the future…
The Christmas Swap by Sandy Barker
Will all three women have their Christmas wishes come true?
Christmas is coming and best friends Chloe, Jules, and Lucy are needing change… so swapping homes for the holidays could be the perfect present for all of them!
Australian Chloe spends her Christmas in a sleepy village in Oxfordshire, England. She is totally star-struck when she discovers who lives across the road.
Lucy, who has jetted off to snowy Colorado for her dream-come-true white Christmas, is taken into the fold of Jules’s loud and brash family, discovering more about herself in a few short days than she has in years.
And Jules leaves the cold climes of Colorado to spend her Christmas on a beach with Chloe’s friends in Melbourne, finding that time away is just what she needed.
A Little Christmas Hope by Kathryn Freeman
Newly promoted head teacher Anna Dalton needs a Christmas miracle – and fast! After years of sitting through excruciatingly dull Christmas productions, complete with crying children and sleeping parents, she’s determined Riddlescomb Primary School will put on a Nativity to remember.
Enter bad boy actor Dan Ramsey, recently axed from the lead role in a TV drama and in desperate need of cleaning up his image or he’ll never work again.
Dan can flash those heart-stopping dimples all he likes, Anna tells herself she isn’t going to fall for them. She knows why he’s decided to volunteer at the school, and it’s for the good of his bank balance…not his soul.
But as Anna and Dan are forced to work together for the sake of a truly magical Christmas for the children, sparks fly and they can’t help but wonder what will happen once the festive season is over…
You Make it Feel Like Christmas by Louise Marley
The only thing preventing Beth’s perfect family Christmas? Her family!
Television presenter Agatha Holly has built her career on telling viewers how to have the perfect Christmas. ‘A Holly Jolly Christmas’ has been screened every December for twenty years and her entire family are involved, including her daughter Beth—the unwilling star of a thousand memes and gifs. But Beth has finally had enough of public ridicule. All she’s ever wanted is a traditional family Christmas away from the television cameras. If she can’t persuade her family to change, should she consider celebrating Christmas without them?
One Charmed Christmas by Sheila Roberts
Catherine Pine is hoping her Christmas is a bit more jolly than last year’s. That one was her first without her husband, and with her kids and their families absent this year, she’s worried. But things change when her good friend invites her on a Christmas cruise to lift her spirits. Suddenly every day is an adventure and she’s making a bunch of new friends, including the lovable Sophie Miles.
It’s like a gift from Santa when Sophie and Catherine meet the charming Dr. Rudy Nichols, a perfect match for hypochondriac Sophie. But he comes with a two-legged lump of coal, his guard-dog daughter. And then there’s chocolatier Trevor March, who’s also interested in the scrumptious Sophie. Can he convince her that chocolate is the perfect cure for what ails her? Who knows what Santa has in store for these holiday travelers? Anything could happen this charmed Christmas!
My Christmas Romance by S J Crabb
Christmas comes once a year. True love comes once in a lifetime.
A heart-warming and uplifting story about finding love at Christmas.
Polly Proudlock was in a rut. Working at the cracker factory was beginning to lose its attraction and having just been dumped by her boyfriend, she had reached an all-time low.
The fact he was still her boss added to her problems, not to mention having to work alongside her replacement was a step too far.
A chance meeting changed everything, and Polly found herself agreeing to be a stranger’s fake girlfriend for Christmas to their mutual benefit.
Miles Carlton was the perfect boyfriend. He took her to places she never thought she’d see, and Christmas soon took on a new meaning. Suddenly, she was seeing it through fresh eyes and she liked it—a lot.
As the snow falls and the magic of Christmas captures her heart, Polly discovers that she’s no longer faking something that will only end in tears.
Then an opportunity presents itself that could change her life. But Christmas is fast approaching and she is running out of time.
Fate works in mysterious ways and their worlds are set on a collision course. Soon they are fighting for more than their own Happy Ever After and when the snow melts, who or what will be left standing?
The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss
On the first day of Christmas, a dating app offered me
Twelve tailored chances for perfect harmony . . .
Kate Turner is happily single – a bit too happily, in fact. Since returning to her hometown of Blexford, a sleepy village where everybody knows each other, and between catching up with her oldest friends Laura and Matt, a flourishing career as a fabric designer, and taking care of her beloved dad, love hasn’t really had a look in.
But Kate does love Christmas. So when Laura insists she signs up to the Twelve Dates of Christmas, a brand new dating app service, she doesn’t need too much persuading. Twelve perfect festive dates with the area’s most eligible men – who could say no?
Amongst the twinkling lights and over hot chocolates and glasses of red wine, romance is easy to find. But with each date, Kate learns more about the men, and even more about herself.
As the big day approaches, Kate’s left wondering – is it really the season for true love, or will this Christmas be the coldest yet?
The Ticklemore Christmas Toy Shop by Liz Davies
You’re never too old to fall in love…
There is a disturbance in the force and octogenarian Hattie Jenkins can feel it in her water. Still active and spritely, she guesses that the miserable-looking gentleman sitting morosely in the café where she works, might be the reason.
Widowed Alfred Miller has recently moved in with his daughter because she is worried that he’s becoming too frail and forgetful to look after himself. And he’s not in the least bit happy about it, especially since his home is soon be cleared and sold.
But when he enlists Hattie’s help to save some of his precious belongings, he doesn’t realise that Hattie’s mission is to save more than a few sticks of furniture. She’s on a mission to save him, too.
My Christmas Number One by Leonie Mack
There’s nothing quite like a Christmas love story, to get you in the mood for celebrating…
Cara doesn’t do sexy and she only does ‘Happy Christmas’ under duress. She is, after all, a serious musician, and her stubborn streak is born from her struggle to recover from a serious injury.
Javi lives for escapist fun – in his music, and in his life – especially since he’s always failed at life’s more serious challenges, including marriage and fatherhood.
Javi and Cara are forced to record a Christmas single together, but neither of them have plans to spend any more time with each other than they absolutely have to. With Christmas traditions that couldn’t be more different, and outlooks on life that are worlds apart, the chemistry just shouldn’t work. But the magic of Christmas can bring even opposites together…
Miracle on Christmas Street by Annie O’Neil
Behind every door is a festive wish…
When Jess Green arrives at her new home on Christmas Street, she quickly realises that this will be a December to remember! After the disaster of last year, she was hoping to curl up and avoid the festivities – but her new neighbours have other ideas…
Together, they’re creating something extraordinary: a real-life advent calendar. As each house opens its door for wreath-making, gingerbread icing or carol singing, Jess finds herself swept up in the holiday cheer. Every house, that is, except for No. 24, home to the cantakerous Mr Winters.
But when disaster strikes, can Jess pull off a festive miracle – and make her own Christmas wish come true?
Escape to Christmas Cottage by CJ Morrow
Ruby Sutton hates Christmas and is determined it just isn’t happening this year.
After a shocking tragedy two Christmases ago Ruby finds herself unable to ruin another Christmas for her parents, which is what she did last year. So, she’s booked herself a little escape in a secluded cottage in Devon. She has everything she needs for her hideaway holiday and intends to while away her time soaking in the bath, reading books, knitting (yes, really) going braless, and not blow drying her hair at all. That’s the plan: Christmas is officially cancelled.
Just before she leaves for her break, she discovers the cottage is called Christmas Cottage – a strange name for what is normally a summer rental. Is it an omen? Could be, but she arrives late at night, snuggles down and has the best night’s sleep she’s had for two years.
It’s going to be great, isn’t it? Except there’s been a mix-up, the cottage is double booked, it snows and she’s trapped with the ever smirky and smiley, Noah Steele. So much for going braless…
Will Ruby discover the joys of Christmas again? Will Noah ever stop smiling?
Let the bickering commence…
All I Want for Christmas by Joanna Bolouri
When Nick loses his job and is dumped by his glamorous but demanding girlfriend, he is forced to grudgingly accept work as a Santa at a local Christmas grotto. As his friends are getting married or promoted, Nick spends his days being terrorised by unfriendly elves and cried on by snotty, spoiled children.
Then he meets 4-year-old Alfie. All Alfie wants for Christmas is for his mum, Sarah, to be happy again. Moved by the boy’s selfless wish, Nick arranges a date between Sarah and his best friend, Matt. But as Sarah and Alfie become part of all their lives, Nick realises that happiness for Sarah and Matt might mean heartbreak for himself.
The Last Christmas Kiss by Jo Bartlett
It’s been almost six years since tragedy tore Julia and Sam’s relationship apart and the last place they expected to see each other again was in the beautiful Swiss Alps. They can’t avoid the reunion neither of them wanted, when they both accept contracts to work as mountain rescue medics in an exclusive ski resort during the run-up to Christmas.
A lot has changed in the last six years, but Julia’s only priority now is to get through the next ten days and back to the daughter who means the world to her. As far as she’s concerned, Sam let her down when she needed him most and the best Christmas present the universe could give her would be never having to see him again.
Sam has no idea why Julia’s so hostile, especially when she was the one to end their relationship, until he discovers just how big a secret she’s been keeping from him since they last met. Sam’s already been rejected by the one person who should have loved him unconditionally, and suffered the loss of his beloved father, so the last thing he wants is to risk getting close to Julia again – especially now the stakes are so high.
Neither of them anticipate Christmas working its magic, but it’s hard to ignore when they’re surrounded by snow covered trees, festive markets and enchanted cabins hidden deep in the forest. Then there’s the series of hazardous rescues, high up in the mountains, forcing them to work closely together and reminding them exactly why they fell in love first time around.
When the most painful part of Sam’s past suddenly comes back into his life, all his worst fears about being enough for Julia come crashing back in with it. Can they hold onto the magic they’ve found in Switzerland and take it back home, or have they already shared the last Christmas kiss they’ll ever have?
The Little Christmas Shop on Nutcracker Lane by Jaimie Admans
It’s the most magical time of year, and anything can happen…
Nia Maddison has always believed that wishes come true on Nutcracker Lane. So, when she gets the opportunity to run her own Christmas gift shop on the most magical street in town, it feels like her wishes have been finally granted.
But working late one night, Nia discovers yet another boyfriend has cheated on her. As she trudges home – alone, again – she passes the (supposedly) magical nutcracker and half-joking thinks a wish can’t hurt. Cracking a nut in its mouth, she wishes to find Prince Charming.
The next day Nia gets to work to find another decoration shop has opened directly across the lane from her own, and she can’t resist having a nose around.
Whilst there, she accidentally backs into a human-sized Nutcracker, knocking it over and breaking it. Mortified, she flees from the store but when she gathers her resolve to go back and apologise, she stumbles across the gorgeous shop owner James, who looks exactly like Prince Charming…
Could her Christmas wish from the night before really be coming true?
The Amsterdam Affair by Kate Frost
A new start, a chance encounter, a Christmas to remember. Will Iris’s new year be happy ever after?
When Iris Greene’s boyfriend surprises her with a romantic dinner at their favourite restaurant, she’s expecting a proposal, not a move to another country.
But Amsterdam proves to be the change she never knew she needed, and a surprise encounter with a local actor leads Iris to new friends and the rediscovery of a long lost passion. While Iris thrives in a city filled with festivity, her boyfriend struggles, and her heart is torn in two.
As snow falls and secrets are revealed, Iris must decide her future. Will she be brave enough to start over and take a chance on love?
A Kiss in the Snow (Little Duck Pond Cafe) by Rosie Green
After a cruel twist of fate sends her hurtling into a black hole of despair, Carrie is absolutely dreading the festive season – especially with sister, Krystle, being even more demanding of her time and energy than usual. But then friend Maddy offers Carrie a lifeline: the chance to get away from it all in a holiday cottage in the gorgeous little village of Silverbells. Deciding that a few weeks of tranquillity – reading, baking and going for long walks in the countryside – might just restore her mood, Carrie is quick to take up the offer. But on arriving, it very soon becomes clear that this break is going to be anything but peaceful!
An unwelcome houseguest proves unsettling enough – especially one who whistles loudly first thing in the morning and is far too cheerful for his own good – but finding herself drawn into the spooky mystery of her missing neighbour means there really isn’t much time for personal reflection. And then love comes knocking, and Carrie is forced to decide exactly where her heart lies.
Will this festive season be the disaster Carrie predicted? Or will Santa be good to her and deliver her heart’s desire? One thing’s for sure – this will be a Christmas Carrie will never, ever forget…
Snowed in at Snowflake B&B by Kellie Hailes
All I want for Christmas…
Samantha Heatherington always loved Christmas at Snowflake B&B. Her cooking job over the festive season was always her favourite time of year. Until, thriller writer Reuben Richards buys the beautiful inn she always thought would one day be hers.
Grumpy and too-good-looking-for-his-own-good, Reuben has no experience running a B&B, let alone cooking and spends most of his time in his study hiding from the guests. Thankfully Sam isn’t interested in love right now, let alone the one man who might lead to her losing the one place that has ever felt like home. It looks like it’s going to be up to Sam to mix up a little bit of Christmas magic!
Can Sam save Snowflake B&B in time for Christmas and maybe even find love under the mistletoe?
I Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day by Milly Johnson
It’s nearly Christmas and it’s snowing, hard. Deep in the Yorkshire Moors nestles a tiny hamlet, with a pub at its heart. As the snow falls, the inn will become an unexpected haven for six people forced to seek shelter there…
Mary has been trying to get her boss Jack to notice her for four years, but he can only see the efficient PA she is at work. Will being holed up with him finally give her the chance she has been waiting for?
Bridge and Luke were meeting for five minutes to set their divorce in motion. But will getting trapped with each other reignite too many fond memories – and love?
Charlie and Robin were on their way to a luxury hotel in Scotland for a very special Christmas. But will the inn give them everything they were hoping to find – and much more besides?
A story of knowing when to hold on and when to let go, of pushing limits and acceptance, of friendship, love, laughter, mince pies and the magic of Christmas.
Together by Christmas by Karen Swan
When Lee first came to Amsterdam, it was with a newborn baby and a secret. Five years later, her life is approaching normal: her career as a celebrity photographer is flourishing, her son Jasper is growing up, and they are enjoying the run-up to Christmas with their tight circle of close friends.
But all this changes one morning when Lee finds a book in the basket of her bicycle – and scrawled inside it, a desperate message. Who left it for her, and why? Lee feels compelled to help and tracks down the book’s author, Sam. With an instant, undeniable connection it seems they might have a shot at a real future together.
Until her past comes calling. As the snow falls and ice thickens on the city’s canals, the secret Lee has never told resurfaces. Suddenly everything she holds dear hangs in the balance. Christmas is a time for being together – but what if the truth means she ends up alone?
The Country Village Christmas Show by Cathy Lake
Recently divorced, the family home sold and her son all grown-up, Clare is at a crossroads. She’s dedicated her whole adult life to her family, and now it’s time she did something for herself.
In the lead up to Christmas, Clare decides that a bit of time in the countryside might be just what she needs, so she moves back to Little Bramble, the village she grew up in. But living with her mum for the first time in years – and not to mention Goliath the Great Dane – can be challenging.
When Clare finds herself running the village Christmas show, it feels like she has purpose in her life again. Bringing together people from all sides of the community, and all walks of life, will Clare manage to pull off a festive feat like no other? And will she find the new start in life – and possibly love – that she’s been looking for?
The Winter Garden by Heidi Swain
Freya Fuller is estranged from her parents and has been following her childhood dream of becoming a gardener ever since. When an opportunity to design a winter garden opens up at a Victorian property in Nightingale Square, Freya jumps at the chance to make a fresh start. But while the majority of the residents are welcoming, local artist Finn seems determined to shut her out, and when Freya’s family make a surprise appearance, it seems that her new life is about to come crashing down . . .
Christmas at the Marshmallow Cafe by CP Ward
When downtrodden checkout assistant Bonnie Green receives a letter from a mysterious uncle, she can hardly believe her eyes.
Gifted a hundred-year lease on a famous cafe situated in the middle of a mythical theme park, Bonnie sets off with her best friend Debbie on an adventure to a hidden valley in the Lake District where they will find new friendship, love, and happiness, all set against the magic of Christmas … and more marshmallows than they can possibly eat….
Christmas Lights and Snowfall Fights by Beth Rain
Caro Jenkins is finally making her escape for Christmas. It has been a sucky, sucky year…
She got dumped…
She’s still stuck selling over-priced clothes to idiots…
and, of course, she had to work on Christmas Eve eve. Her birthday.
But now she’s on her way to the cosy oasis that is her parents’ house – ready to slip into her festive PJs, turn her back on the year and hibernate until New Year arrives.
One ill-advised moment of weakness where she actually listens to her Sat-Nav and disaster strikes.
Sam Wills is determined to bury his head in the sand until Christmas is all over. It has been a crappy, crappy year…
He’s all alone…
The well-meaning villagers of Little Bamton are driving him potty…
and, of course, Christmas was always his wife’s favourite time of year.
But now he’s on his way down to the village pub for one last appearance before hiding-out in his cabin until the New Year. Or, that was the plan until he spotted the ancient, red Nissan Micra on its side in the ditch.
Will the magic of Little Bamton be enough to save Caro and Sam this Christmas or is the festive season about the be the biggest baubles-up of the year so far?
The 12 Christmases of You & Me by Jennifer Joyce
What if you could go back in time and fix the biggest mistake of your life?
Two years ago, Maisie’s best friend walked out of her life and she hasn’t heard from him since. When she wakes up in 1994, she naturally assumes she’s dreaming. But when she finds herself in the past again the next night and her actions in the dream alter her present-day life, she begins to wonder if she’s somehow hopping back in time. And if she is time-travelling, can she save her friendship with Jonas?
When Maisie is forced to relive Christmases of the past, will she face up to her mistakes, or make them all over again?
Christmas Wishes by Sue Moorcroft
Hannah and Nico are meant to be together.
But fate is keeping them apart…
As soon as Hannah bumps into her brother Rob’s best friend Nico in Stockholm, the two rekindle a fast friendship. But Hannah has a boyfriend – and Nico has two children to look after.
When Hannah loses her beloved shop in Stockholm, though, she is forced to move back to the little village of Middledip – only to find Nico has just moved in too. Under the same snowy sky, can the childhood friends make a romance work – or are there too many obstacles standing in their way?
The Six Tales of Christmas by Anne Marie Ryan
It’s almost Christmas and snow is falling in the Cotswolds. Simon and Nora are gearing up for the festive season – but their bookshop is in trouble.
Nora is delighted when a customer buys a book that’s been on the shelves for years, but that won’t be enough to keep the bailiffs away.
Fuelled by mulled wine and mince pies, Nora and Simon hatch a plan to rouse community spirit, sending out six books to lonely villagers. The books change the recipients’ lives, but is it too late to change the bookshop’s fate?
Christmas at the Farmhouse by Rebecca Boxall
As the anticipation of Christmas builds in the Nielsen family’s cosy farmhouse, Jo, Magnus and their grown-up children begin to congregate for a hybrid Danish-Jersey festive season, each with a surprise of their own – though the surprise that arrives over Christmas is the most life-changing of all.
Fifty years earlier, in 1969, Susan Jones finds herself being pursued by Mr Jenners, her former English teacher, and at the age of seventeen is packed off to a Home for Unmarried Mothers in London by her uncompromising father. As Christmas approaches, all she can do is desperately hope to be rescued, but will anyone be able to reach her in time?
The two timelines of this festive story gradually weave together in a tale that examines whether love and hope can eventually triumph over even the deepest sadness.
One Family Christmas by Bella Osborne
A big family. A whole lot of secrets. A Christmas to remember…
This year, Lottie is hosting one last big family Christmas at the home she grew up in – just like her Nana would have wanted.
But when her relatives descend on the old manor house, Lottie gets more than she bargained for. Every family has its secrets, but in this family, everybody has one!
So, between cooking a Christmas dinner, keeping tensions at bay and a stray dog out of mischief, she has plenty on her plate (and not just misshapen sausage rolls and a frozen turkey). And then her first love shows up – nine years after he walked out of her life.
Can Lottie make their last family Christmas one to remember… for the right reasons?
One More for Christmas by Sarah Morgan
Gayle is a highly successful and motivated business woman, but her success has come at a price – she hasn’t spoken to her daughters, Ella and Samantha, for years. But when Gayle has an accident at work, she realises she needs to make amends with her family.
And so she invites herself to join Ella and Samantha for their Christmas in the beautiful Scottish Highlands. The sisters are none too pleased that their mother has inserted herself into their Christmas plans. They have each other – and don’t need their mother back in their lives. Or so they think…
As they embark on their first family Christmas together in years, will the three women learn that sometimes facing up to a few home truths is all you need to heal your heart?
If Every Day was Christmas by Donna Ashcroft
Snow is falling, fires are crackling merrily, and Lockton tradition has everyone hanging a promise they’re determined to keep this Christmas on the tree in the village square…
Meg Scott has promised to make a success of her first solo Christmas. She runs a year-round Christmas shop in the little Scottish village, and is a fan of all things mulled, sparkly and festive. So when her warring family shows up on her doorstep, ready to spread discord and tension, Meg is determined not to let them ruin her favourite time of the year.
Meanwhile, Christmas-hating Tom Riley-Clark has been called to the Highlands to help his old friend at The Apple Cross Inn. He’s ready to work hard and has no time for mince pies, tinsel or hanging a promise on the tree: the thought of every day being Christmas is his worst nightmare, and you wouldn’t catch him dead buying a bauble. So everyone is surprised when Christmas-loving Meg and grinch Tom start to get cozy under the mistletoe.
But Tom has a big secret about his past, and in a small town like Lockton it’s hard to keep anything hidden for long. Will everything fall apart when Meg discovers who he really is? The pair are about to learn the hard way that some promises are impossible to keep…
Cathy’s Christmas Kitchen by Tilly Tennant
As the snow flutters down in the little village of Linnetford, escape to a cosy farmhouse kitchen, scented with the rich aromas of fruitcake and gingerbread, where a love of baking is about to unite two lonely hearts…
Cathy cooked at her mother’s side her whole life and could bake a fairy cake before she could ride a bike. Now she is facing her first Christmas without her beloved mother, she’s determined to use her memories for something positive. She decides to organise a weekly cooking class, sharing her mother’s precious recipes with other lonely souls.
There’s just one small spanner in the works: teenager Tansy, who attends Cathy’s classes even though she’s rude to everyone there and seems to hate every minute. Cathy is poised to ask Tansy to leave, but her uncle, physiotherapist Matt, begs her to give the teenager another chance. And Cathy can’t resist Matt’s sparkling hazel eyes and incredibly kind heart…
But just as Cathy is feeling she might find joy again, her ex returns to Linnetford, desperate for a second chance. With Matt becoming distant as his life gets more complicated, it seems so easy to return to the safe embrace of someone she knows so well. Can Cathy avoid the temptation of falling back in love with the man who broke her heart and let Christmas bring her the greatest gift – that of happiness?
Finding Love at the Christmas Market by Jo Thomas
Residential-home caterer Connie has had one online-dating disaster too many. Hurt in the past and with her son to consider, now she’s feeling hesitant. Then one of Connie’s residents sets her up on a date at a beautiful German Christmas market – with the promise she’ll take a mini-bus full of pensioners along with her…
Amongst the twinkling lights and smell of warm gingerbread in the old market square, Connie heads off on her date with a checklist of potential partner must-haves. Baker Henrich ticks all the boxes, but when Connie meets Henrich’s rival William, she starts to wonder if ticking boxes is the answer.
Will Connie’s wish for love this Christmas come true, and if so – with who?
The Unwrapping of Theodora Quirke by Caroline Smailes
When 19-year old Theodora Quirke heads to work on Christmas Eve the last person she expects to find outside of her flat is St Nicholas of Myra – the Saint people think is Santa Claus (much to Saint Nick’s disgust).
Given he is in full Santa suit and professing to be nearly 2000 years old Theo is wary, but St Nick insists he is here to save her – although he isn’t sure how or why. St Nick does know that Theo is grieving however, so he shows her four scenes from her life that give her hope, but he’s also had cryptic messages from the Christmas Higher Powers that lead him to begin Theo’s training as the first ever female Christmas Angel – a role Theo is not sure she is cut out for.
Theo’s training is soon derailed by St Nick’s evil brother, filled with jealousy and spite over his brother’s popularity and, with confidence dented, and saddened by society’s spiralling levels of expectation and greed, St Nick begins to falter. Theo does everything she can to defeat Nick’s brother and to lift St Nick’s spirits, but as the deadline for Christmas miracles draws close, she realises she must complete them herself – but is she up to the job?
The Winter We Met by Samantha Tonge
When charming, mysterious Nik sits next to Jess on a plane home from a Christmas toy trade fair, she never could have imagined the impact he’d have on her life. As they touch down in London, Jess is hesitant to let Nik walk away, and before she knows it, she’s invited him to visit.
As the two take in the delights of the toy store where she works, Jess gets an upsetting phone call. Willow Court, her grandmother’s care home, is to close before Christmas. Jess is determined to find the perfect new home for her Gran – and throw the best Christmas party Willow Court has ever seen!
But time is running out with the closure looming and Jess becomes increasingly drawn to enigmatic Nik who joins forces with her and best friend Oliver to realise those plans.
Will a chance encou
It’s That Time of Year by Roisin Meaney
It’s the day before the wedding …
Three strangers arrive home to Ireland to the house that gave each of them refuge when they needed it most. They are there to celebrate the winter wedding of their beloved Annie, the woman who fostered them in their childhoods.
Now Julia is a world-famous singer living in luxury in Paris and Eddie is a chef in London, while Steph spends her days on a remote Greek island, running a writers’ retreat with her older lover.
All three have moved on from the past, but as the wedding celebrations get underway, certain truths come to light. It turns out that some hurts last longer than others …
As Annie says ‘I do’, with an unexpected twist for her wedding party, will Julia, Eddie and Steph discover their own happy-ever-afters in time for Christmas Day? It’s That Time of Year is the spellbinding, warm-hearted new novel from one of Ireland’s best-loved writers.
Two Turtle Doves by Sarah-Jane Fraser
This collection of four special stories is brimming with flirting, fairy lights and festive cheer. Get into the holiday spirit and enjoy all the fun and romance that the season has to offer with this delightful Christmas anthology.
A Partridge in a Pear Tree:
Holly has fallen in love with Cherrywell Manor, the place, the people and the parties. The sumptuous venue is playing host to her company’s Christmas charity gala dinner, if she can pull off the event of the century then she’s sure her boss will finally back off and then sacrificing her love-life for her career will all have been worth it. But when disaster strikes the most prestigious event of the year, she mustn’t let the enigmatic gardener, Rory, distract her from her rescue efforts. It’s not just her job at stake.
Two Turtle Doves:
Douglas Whittaker really ruffles Angela Hart’s feathers; he’s nothing but a common thief to her. But when they are forced together to save more than Christmas, she finds the only thing he’s stolen is her heart.
Three French Hens:
Greenway’s Bookshop holds thousands of old tales on its shelves, but a new romance is in the air this Christmas. The pursuit of an antique recipe book stirs up Gabrielle’s love life, but will she find her own happy ending, or are they only for the pages of her beloved books?
Four Calling Birds:
Pour a glass of fizz and reunite with Jenny and the gang for an unconventional Christmas party. There’s a lot to celebrate.
Curl up and discover what true love will bring this Christmas.
A Surprise Christmas Wedding by Phillipa Ashley
It’s been a year since Lottie’s fiancé walked out, leaving her heartbroken. But things start to look up when she lands her dream job at a beautiful Lake District estate, with a handsome groundskeeper for a neighbour.
So when Lottie is asked to organise a last minute Christmas wedding at Firholme, she can’t wait to get started. Until she meets the couple, and discovers that Connor, the man who broke her heart, is the groom-to-be.
As snow falls on the hills, can Lottie put aside her past to organise the perfect winter wedding? And will there be any festive magic left to bring Lottie the perfect Christmas she deserves?
Secrets in the Snow by Emma Heatherington
As the winter snow falls on the small Irish village of Ballybray, Roisin O’Connor and her young son, Ben, are saying goodbye to their beloved neighbour Mabel Murphy. Mabel lived a bold and colourful life, but the arrival of her brooding nephew, ‘blow-in’ Aidan Murphy, just makes life more complicated for Roisin.
However, in one final act of love, a message arrives from Mabel that changes everything. And as winter turns to spring and the cold snow melts, the secrets both Roisin and Aidan are hiding must be revealed at last…
This Time Next Year by Sophie Cousens
Quinn and Minnie are born on New Year’s Eve, in the same hospital, one minute apart.
Their lives may begin together, but their worlds couldn’t be more different.
Thirty years later they find themselves together again in the same place, at the same time.
What if fate is trying to bring them together?
Maybe it’s time to take a chance on love…
Someday at Christmas by Lizzie Byron
Shell Smith is the most popular make-up artist on the ART counter at Duke & Sons, a beautiful but old-fashioned department store in her hometown. But whilst Shell’s love life is looking up, now that she’s dating long-time crush Nick, and business is booming in the beauty department, the rest of the store is noticeably quiet . . .
The owner’s grandson Callum has come up with some creative ways to keep Duke & Sons afloat this Christmas, including allowing a production company to secretly film a romcom after hours. When Callum recruits her to help out, Shell finds there is more to Mr Duke Jr. than sharp suits and a business-like demeanour.
With a store to save and her own romance with Nick going off-script, Christmas just got complicated for Shell. But this is the most wonderful time of the year, so there must be a happy ending awaiting… Right?
Christmas for Beginners by Carole Matthews
Christmas is fast approaching at the new Hope Farm. Owner Molly Baker has been convinced to organise an open day to raise some much-needed funds ahead of the New Year, but the nativity tableau is proving challenging. With anti-social sheep, awkward alpacas and a seriously sequined Santa Claus to assemble, Molly is feeling overwhelmed, and in desperate need of some Christmas spirit . . .
Despite the chaos of the farm getting in the way of her event planning, Molly is looking forward to spending the holidays with boyfriend Shelby and his son, Lucas, hopeful that a happy family Christmas is exactly what they need to draw them all together. But while she is busy making plans on the farm, Shelby, it seems, has ideas of his own.
As the nativity draws near, the team are working hard to pull off a spectacular festive fete – and make sure the animals and humans remain on their best behaviour.
Will this Christmas be merry and bright… or is there more than one surprise in store for Molly and Hope Farm?
Meet Me at Fir Tree Lodge by Rachel Dove
Rebecca Atkins has everything she could hope for – the perfect fiancé, fabulous friends and a career as a professional skier. But when an accident on the slopes brings her crashing down in the snow with a catastrophic thud, everything changes. Her career is over, and her fiancé turns out to be, well, not so perfect.
With the chance to start afresh, Rebecca does what anyone else in her position would do… She turns to baking and manages the Alpine Bites café, nestled in the French Alps.
But when handsome stranger Luke Sommersby becomes Rebecca’s unexpected lodger, her plan to completely forget about love is thrown into jeopardy. Guarding her heart since the accident, Fir Tree Lodge is strictly a man-free-zone.
Luke is kind, caring and gorgeous, but the emotional scars from her fall still run deep, and she fights to keep the sparks catching her heart at bay.
Will Rebecca be able to find a second chance in the snow and step into a bright new future with Luke by her side?
Meet Me in London by Georgia Toffolo
What do you do when your fake engagement starts to feel too real…
Aspiring clothes designer Victoria Scott spends her days working in a bar in Chelsea, and her evenings designing vintage clothes, dreaming of one day opening her own boutique. But these aspirations are under threat from the new department store opening at the end of her road. She needs a Christmas miracle, but one is not forthcoming.
Oliver Russell’s Christmas is not looking very festive right now. His family’s new London department store opening is behind schedule, and on top of that his interfering, if well meaning, mother is pressing him to introduce his girlfriend to her. A girlfriend who does not exist. He needs a diversion. Something to keep his mother from interfering while he focuses on the business.
When Oliver meets Victoria, he offers a proposition: pretend to be his girlfriend at the opening of his store and he will provide an opportunity for Victoria to showcase her designs. But what starts as a business arrangement soon becomes something more tempting, as the fake relationship starts to feel very real. But when secrets in Victoria’s past are exposed will Oliver walk away, or will they both follow their hearts and find what neither knew they were looking for…
Christmas at Carly’s Cupcakes by Jessica Redland
It’s December on Castle Street; the fairy lights are twinkling, snow has settled and the festive season is in full swing.
For Carly, the owner of Carly’s Cupcakes, it’s the busiest time of year getting everyone’s Christmas treats ready on time. However with her clumsy sister, Bethany, as a co-worker, it’s proving a difficult task. They say you shouldn’t mix work with family. Maybe they have a point…
As Christmas approaches, Carly is also eagerly awaiting the return of her best friend to Whitsborough Bay. Liam has no idea he’s been the object of her affection since their schooldays. After years of pining after him, can Carly pluck up the courage to finally tell him how she really feels by 25th December?
Could a little festive magic make all of Carly’s wishes come true this Christmas…?
Snowflakes Over Bay Tree Terrace by Fay Keenan
As the snowflakes fall, new love blossoms…
When teacher Florence Ashton receives a surprise inheritance, she decides to make the life-changing decision to up sticks to the charming town of Willowbury in Somerset. With a new house and a new job, she’s too busy putting down roots to think about love.
Air Ambulance pilot Sam Ellis is definitely not looking for romance either, especially not on his doorstep. When Florence, his new neighbour, complains about his noisy housemate, he feels more cross than star-crossed.
But as the nights draw in and both find themselves thrown together in Willowbury’s seasonal drama production, will they overcome their differences and allow a little bit of winter magic to fall along with the snow? And what secrets will be revealed by the box of memories Florence finds in the attic at Bay Tree Terrace?
Christmas in Times Past
A Christmas to Remember by Anton Du Beke
This Christmas, you are cordially invited to the wedding of the year!
When fiercely independent chambermaid Nancy Nettleton first moved to London and the Buckingham hotel, the last thing on her mind was finding love, let alone falling for the debonair demonstration dancer Raymond de Guise.
As the festive season approaches, life at the exclusive hotel is busier than ever, with guests arriving from around the world, seeking comfort, relaxation and refuge as tensions build across Europe and it looks like another war is imminent.
Behind the scenes, the staff work tirelessly, ensuring the smooth operation of the hotel, guarding the secrets of their guests – but they have many of their own that they fear will be revealed.
As the band strikes up in the Grand Ballroom to celebrate Nancy and Raymond’s wedding, one thing is certain – this will be a Christmas to remember.
The Winter Promise by Rosie Goodwin
When Opal Sharp finds herself and her younger siblings suddenly orphaned and destitute, she thinks things can get no worse.
But soon three of them – including Opal – are struck down with the illness that took their father from them, and her brother Charlie is forced to make an impossible decision. Unable to afford a doctor, he knows the younger children will not survive. So, unbeknownst to Opal, Charlie takes their younger siblings to the workhouse, where he knows they will at least be fed and have a roof over their heads.
Opal is heartbroken and struggles to forgive him. Charlie, in turn, takes bigger and bigger risks to try to support what’s left of the Sharp family and earn Opal’s forgiveness – but he takes it too far and finds himself in trouble with the law. Soon, he is sent on a convict ship to Australia.
As poor Opal is forced to say goodbye to the final member of her family, she makes a promise to reunite them all one day.
Will Opal ever see her family again?
A Blackpool Christmas by Maggie Mason
The war may be over, but for newly reunited sisters Babs and Beth, peace has yet to find them. Having been taken from their mother at a young age and then separated themselves for twelve years, their family has encountered enough pain to last a lifetime.
As the festive season approaches, they realise their struggles are far from over, but if they want to look forward to a happy future together they must work to put the past behind them. Will the joys of Christmas be enough to unite their family once more?
A Reunion at Mulberry Lane by Rosie Clarke
Peggy is once more torn two ways and can only hope that a reunion with her Mulberry Lane family and friends at Christmas can help resolve her problems.
Her eldest daughter Janet is desperately unhappy and fears her husband is having an affair, whilst her youngest daughter Fay has been talent-spotted to train as a figure skater back in London.
Peggy is faced with the dilemma of moving her family back to London to pursue her daughter’s destiny.
But will everyone be happy with this?
Rag and Bone Christmas by Dilly Court
Paradise Row, London. December 1865.
Snow is falling fast and Sally Suggs is working tirelessly to bring in enough money to keep bread on the table. Her father, a skilled rag-and-bone man, has fallen ill and now Sally has taken up his trade.
But this is a man’s world and competition is fierce, and Sally’s rival Finn Kelly always seems to be one step ahead. Her family’s one valuable possession is their horse, Flower, yet with no one to protect them, London’s underbelly of black-market traders circle closer.
Sally needs to find help in the most unexpected places if they are to survive…
A Workhouse Christmas by Kay Brellend
Discover the Workhouse to War trilogy by Kay Brellend: a new saga series set in the Whitechapel Union workhouse in East London, between 1904 and 1916. . .
Christmas Eve, 1909. Eleven-year-old Lily Larkin is left to fend for herself in an East London workhouse after her dying mother is taken to an infirmary: her future looks bleak. Once she is separated from her twin brother, Davy, her childhood hopes seem to shatter. But Lily’s fierce spirit – along with her beloved new friends – help her to endure the miserable drudgery of life at South Grove Workhouse and its cruel supervisor, Miss Fox.
When a handsome, smartly-dressed gentleman shows up at the workhouse, claiming to be her cousin and with an offer of employment, Lily seizes her chance to escape. But her new job is far from perfect, and her reunion with her brother isn’t what she thought it would be. Still, she relishes her freedom from the workhouse, and, finding herself on the cusp of womanhood, is determined to embrace her new life – until a shocking secret from her past is uncovered. As everything she’d ever believed about herself is thrown into confusion, will Lily ever be able to rise above her past?
Come Tomorrow by Tess Thompson
One chance meeting. A single act of kindness. Can young soulmates find each other in adulthood, or will hidden truths tear them apart?
1904 Twelve-year-old Luci Quick never forgot the boy who saved her life that fateful Christmas Eve. But when he disappeared without a word after bringing her food, she was forced to focus on raising her baby sister when her mother suddenly died. Now six years later and struggling to make ends meet with an alcoholic and gambling-addicted father, the poverty-stricken woman can’t believe her hero has returned… and he’s all grown up.
Wesley Ford’s world changed after helping the girl who still haunts his dreams. When he was whisked away to boarding school at fourteen, he feared he’d never see her again. But now free to come back following his father’s death, the wealthy heir is shocked to discover Luci and her sibling never escaped their rundown shack.
With fate dealing her another opportunity for happiness, Luci seizes the day when an offer of help turns into an unexpected proposal. But before they can settle into their future, Wesley must face painful family secrets that could tear them apart forever.
Can a Yuletide miracle make a wish for love come true?
Christmas in Wartime
Christmas with the Ops Room Girls by Vicki Beeby
When there’s so much to be afraid of, can May help bring festive cheer to the Ops Room?
After failing to help evacuee siblings whom she witnesses being separated, May wishes she’d had the confidence to speak up. When Jess suggests a pantomime to boost morale on the station, May is desperate to help – but is held back by her own insecurities.
With her low self-esteem also affecting her relationship with Squadron Leader Peter Travis, May is fed up with being her own worst enemy and decides to take charge of her destiny. But the past she ran from, plus a crisis with one of the evacuees, throw May into the midst of a drama that will test all of her newfound confidence.
May, Jess and Evie must work together once again to help each other through the challenges of war and of their own hearts.
The Emmerdale Girls by Kerry Bell
December 1944, and the residents of Beckindale can’t believe they’re going through another wartime Christmas. Though the success of the D-Day landings earlier in the year has brought some hope to the village. The women of Emmerdale are navigating their own lives, loves and dream and as the war draws to a close, and they realise things will never be the same again.
The Emmerdale girls are going to learn things are never dull where love is involved.
Under the Mistletoe by Katie Flynn
When war comes to Britain, Jessica Wilson and her friend Ruby seize the opportunity to leave behind the orphanage they grew up in and start new lives in the NAAFI. With only forged papers as identification the girls expect to be turned away but are delighted with an offer of work.
For the first time in their lives they experience real independence and it isn’t long before they’re spending their evenings enjoying the delights of Liverpool.
When Jessica meets the handsome Tom, she feels as though her life is complete, but after a chance encounter with a friend, she soon learns that not everything is as it seems.
As Jessica begins to uncover the truth, she unravels a web of lies, starting with the night of her birth, and she will need the support of her friends if she is to get her Christmas wish . . .
A Gift for the District Nurses by Annie Groves
It’s 1943 and the district nurses have two new recruits…
As the country ramps up for D-Day, the new nurses getting to know their patients on their patch in London’s East End.
Lily is quite sure of herself and doesn’t believe she has anything new to learn. She’ll find out the hard way that anyone can be made a fool of when she meets a man who promises her everything.
Ruby thinks that nursing might not be for her – is she as hopeless as she thinks, or will tough times bring out the best in her?
As the war takes on a new urgency, everything is at stake ─ can the nurses do what is right for the country and for themselves?
Christmas with the Teashop Girls by Elaine Everest
It is late 1940 and the war feels closer to home than ever for Rose Neville and her staff at the Lyon’s Teashop in Margate. The worry of rationing hangs overhead as the Nippies do their best to provide a happy smile and a hot cup of tea for their customers. When a heavy bombing raid targets the Kent coastline, Lyon’s is badly hit, throwing the future of the cafe into jeopardy.
The light in Rose’s life is her dashing fiancé Capt. Ben Hargreaves and planning their Christmas Eve wedding. But she must also plan to take two new step-daughters into her life and get on the right side of her wealthy mother-in-law, Lady Diana. Is Rose ready to become a mother so soon?
When Rose’s half-sister Eileen makes contact, it seems that Rose’s dreams of having a sibling are coming true at long last. But her friends begin to suspect that something is not right between Eileen and her husband: just what are they hiding?
As the Christmas Eve wedding draws near, the bombings intensify in Kent and London, putting everything and everyone Rose loves in danger. Only one thing is for sure: it will be a Christmas she never forgets . . .
A Christmas Wish for the Shipyard Girls by Nancy Revell
Sunderland, 1943: As Christmas approaches in the shipyards, everyone is hoping for a little magic…
Helen would love to find the courage to tell the dashing Dr Parker of her true feelings for him. But how can she when he clearly has eyes for someone else?
More than a year has passed since Bel’s wedding to sweetheart Joe. She knows she has much to feel thankful for and yet there is still one burning desire which she cannot ignore.
And as Polly grows with child, she hopes against hope for a safe delivery – and that her husband Tommy can soon return from the front line to meet their new arrival.
There will be storms to weather, but guided by their strength and friendship there is still hope for each of the shipyard girls that their Christmas wishes will come true.
Christmas with the Variety Girls by Tracy Baines
Will Christmas bring an unexpected reunion?…
Frances O’Leary has always dreamed of being a dancer. But after war is declared and the theatres begin to close, Frances and the variety girls must search for work elsewhere.
However, Frances is hiding a secret. As far as her best friend Jessie knows, Frances is a young aunt who adores her niece, Imogen – but what she doesn’t know is that their relationship runs much deeper. Now, with the sweetheart who cruelly abandoned her returning to England, will her secret finally be revealed?…
Christmas with the Bobby Girls by Johanna Bell
In the midst of war, can they find a reason to celebrate?
1915. Patrolling is the last thing on the minds of Women’s Police Service recruits Annie, Maggie and Poppy right now, because Annie and her fiancé Richard are about to get married. She’s been waiting for this day her whole life, but when it finally comes it brings only heartache and Annie doesn’t know if she can go on.
The influx of soldiers to the capital means that the WPS’s work is more important than ever, though, and Annie’s country needs her. She and the girls are posted to the bustling heart of the city and she hopes the new job will distract her from her sorrow.
It certainly does that. Soon the biggest bombing raid of the war causes chaos on their patch. On top of that, Annie suspects that a group of men are forcing European refugees into prostitution and resolves to stop them by Christmas. But by the time she realises just how high up the scandal goes, she might be in too deep to get out . . .
Christmas for the Shop Girls by Joanna Toye
Marlow’s department store this Christmas
For Lily Collins and her fellow shop girls at Marlow’s Department store, another Christmas with ration books, shortages of goods and staff – not to mention a store coping with war damage – will be a real challenge.
But the girls rally round and put their worries aside to make this, the hardest wartime Christmas yet, one that their families, and their town, will never forget.
A Christmas Wedding by Fiona Ford
London, 1943: Dot Hanson has never forgotten the thrill of seeing the beautiful Christmas displays at Liberty’s department store as a young girl.
Never in her wildest dreams did she think she would one day work there, or that she would fall in love with the store’s manager, her childhood sweetheart Edwin Button.
But in spite of the life Dot has built for herself, and the tight-knit community around her, she lives in the shadow of a terrible secret. And as the bombs continue to fall across Britain there is more heartache still to come.
All Dot wants is a family of her own with the man she loves by her side.
Will her dreams come true in time for Christmas?
A Wartime Wish by Kitty Danton
One wish could change their fate . . .
Covent Garden, 1944. With the mini Blitz bringing danger to the streets of London, best friends Sukie and Pattie are desparate to help in any way they can. Joining the mobile canteen workforce a few days a week, Sukie tries to bring a little bit of cheer to those devastated by the bombings, while Pattie is drawn to the returning evacuees searching for their families.
What they both want more that anything is for the war to be over. But the girls discover that romance can blossom even under a war-torn sky, and that friendship can lighten the darkest hours. If they just stick together, maybe wishes can come true . . .
Christmas on the Home Front by Annie Clarke
October 1942: As Christmas approaches, the evacuees decide a pantomime is just what the village of Massingham needs.
Viola loves her new job away from the factory, and hopes that her romance with the handsome Ralph might have a happy ending. Meanwhile, married life is proving tough for Fran and Davey as they are forced apart by war work and an unexpected arrival on her doorstep turns her world upside down.
Following her husband’s shock confession, Beth finally feels as though she’s regaining control of her life, that is until he turns up . . .
A lot can happen on the home front, but Christmas is a time for family and friends, and the factory girls will do everything they can to ensure this year’s celebration is one to remember.
Christmas with the Spitfire Girls by Jenny Holmes
Yorkshire 1944: All they want this year is a truly happy Christmas…
The end of the war feels tantalisingly close, but Air Transport Auxiliary girls Bobbie, Viv and Mary have plenty more flights in their beloved Spitfires yet – battling everything from snow to enemy fire on their journeys.
Risking their lives doing their bit for their country, this Christmas they’re determined to have some festive fun. But as they set about bringing good tidings for all, a stern and mysterious new flyer in the form of Peggy arrives. What secret is Peggy hiding?
Mary has a wedding to plan before her fiancé is sent away, then makes a devastating discovery so shameful she can’t tell the other girls. Bobbie’s beau issues an ultimatum, and Viv is wondering whether she wants a man at all…
With the big day around the corner and hope of peace on the horizon, can the girls find joy and love this Christmas after so many years of war?
Bobby’s War by Shirley Mann
On the ground, the crowd of men stood with their mouths agape, watching the wings soar into the air, the tail kept impressively steady and the small plane with a woman at the controls disappearing into the May sunshine.
It’s 1942 and World War Two is in full swing. Roberta ‘Bobby’ Hollis has joined the Air Transport Auxiliary in a team of pilots known as the ‘glamour girls’. Just as capable as the men, these amazing women pilot aircraft all around the country.
After a childhood being ignored on the family farm by a withdrawn father and a traumatised mother, Bobby had always wanted an escape. And the ATA seemed like the perfect opportunity to realise her dreams and help her country win the war.
But there’s always something standing in her way. Her friend Harriet, who attracts chaos wherever she goes. Her father, who would like to marry her off to a rich farmer’s son from the next county. And the family secrets that threaten to engulf everything. Not to mention the danger she’s in every day as part of the ATA.
As Bobby navigates her way through life, and love, she has to learn that controlling a huge, four-engined bomber might just be easier than controlling her own life . . .
Murder and Mystery at Christmas
The Christmas Killer by Alex Pine
As the snow begins to fall, the body count begins to climb…
DI James Walker is ready for a quiet family Christmas in the sleepy village of Kirkby Abbey.
But when he opens an early Christmas present left on his doorstep, he soon realises it is no gift. Inside is a gruesome surprise, and a promise – twelve days, twelve murders. Not long after, the first body is found, half frozen in the snow.
As the blizzards descend, panic spreads through the remote Cumbrian village – there’s a killer amongst them, and with eleven more victims to go, anyone could be next….
Can James stop the killer before they strike again?
Murder in the Snow by Verity Bright
Winter, 1920. Amateur sleuth Lady Eleanor Swift is feeling festive. She is playing host to the entire village at Henley Hall for gifts, games and gingerbread. She’s also purchased perfect presents for each of her household – not forgetting the biggest bone in the butcher’s shop for her partner in crime, Gladstone the bulldog – and is looking forward to celebrating her first English country Christmas.
As snowflakes fall, Eleanor is cheering on contestants in the traditional Christmas fun run in the grounds of the Hall. But tragedy strikes when one of the runners drops dead at the finish line. Dashing Detective Seldon is convinced it’s just a heart attack, but Eleanor isn’t so sure. When she finds a rather distinctive key where the man fell, Eleanor knows she’ll never rest until she finds out the truth about what happened in her own home.
Next the vicar is taken ill with what looks like poison and Eleanor starts to wonder if the two cases are linked. When someone tries to frame her by planting poisoned berries in her own kitchen, she knows speed is of the essence. But the entire village was at Henley Hall for the festivities and Eleanor has enough suspects to stuff a town full of turkeys. Can she nail the true killer and clear her name in time for Christmas?
A Christmas Killing by Blake Banner
Statistically people don’t get murdered on Christmas day.
Lilith Jones was a statistical anomaly. Her mother found her face down on the frozen sidewalk, by the light of the single streetlamp on Pugsley Avenue, with her neighbor’s scissors stuck in her back.
The scissors belonged to her neighbor, and so did all the fingerprints on them. Her neighbor, Pat Perkins, hated Lilith. She hated her because her own husband, her brother and her daughter all loved Lilith. Lilith was charming, beautiful, smart and adorable.
Now she was dead, too.
But Pat, who was unlovable, ugly and stupid, had vanished without a trace, taking her Toyota RAV4 with her. BOLOs were issued nation wide, her financials were checked and rechecked, her phone was tapped, but it was like she had vanished off the face f the Earth.
When Stone and Dehan take the case, it’s a mystery, but the deeper they dig the more impenetrable it becomes, until they find Pat’s lover, Bobby Hansen. Then the terrible truth begins to emerge…
The Christmas Carol by M J Lee
When an antique dealer asks Jayne Sinclair, genealogical investigator, to discover the provenance of a first edition of Charles Dickens’, A Christmas Carol, she is faced with one of the most difficult challenges of her career.
How does she find the family of the mysterious man in the hand-written dedication, when all she has is a name, a place, Victorian Manchester, and a date, December 19, 1843?
She has just three days to uncover the truth before the auction. Even worse, she faces spending her own Christmas alone; her family having decided to visit relatives in Scotland.
Jayne is in a race against time to find the family of the man and the reason why Dickens wrote the dedication. Even more, she has to dig deep within herself to find the true joy of Christmas. A secret discovered by Charles Dickens many years ago.
Can she find the truth behind a Christmas past to deliver a Christmas present?
Afraid of the Christmas Lights – an Anthology of Crime Stories
IT WOULDN’T BE CHRISTMAS WITHOUT A LITTLE CRIME…
A Christmas dinner takes a murderous turn, a friendship group loses the festive spirit, and a young girl goes to extreme measures to keep a beloved dog.
Afraid Of The Christmas Lightsis a collection of gripping, sometimes funny, and always festive short stories from a group of bestselling crime writers.
From the hilarious to the macabre, there’s something for everyone – whether you’re a Christmas convert or a bit of a Grinch. From a detective tracking down missing Christmas geese, to a cat lady who goes on a date in order to keep Santa Paws well fed, this anthology is the perfect gift to cosy up with this year.
All profits from the sale of this anthology will be donated to frontline domestic abuse charities
The Ice Killer by Ross Greenwood
Once, her heart was empty. Now it’s filled with ice…
Ellen’s therapist told her to forget the past, but the life she’s left with is boring. All she wants is to be happy and normal, but the approaching long bleak nights of winter loom threateningly in front of her, especially as she’ll be alone.
When the secrets her mother put in place to protect her are uncovered, Ellen learns the frightening truth. Her history is darker than she imagined. She’s not who she thinks she is, and the real her is a very different person to the one that others have mistreated and exploited.
If she has any hope for a future, Ellen must find answers about the past. This winter, there will be vengeance on Ellen’s mind, and DI Barton will struggle in his hardest case to date.
How can he find the truth when all the victims and witnesses are dead?
Christmas on the Nile by Anna Elliott and Charles Veley
Two ruthless organisations. Two continents. One spectacular Season Two Finale.
Sherlock and Lucy must defeat two ruthless organisations, on two continents, in this ‘Season Two Finale’ of the Sherlock and Lucy series. Their clever archenemy, the evil Lord Sonneborne, will fight them to the bitter end. But the Baker Street team is equally determined. Their own lives, and the life of Lucy’s mother, are at stake, in a struggle to change the future of the British Empire. Who will prevail?
Deadly Desires by Rachel McLean
When two men turn up mutilated in Birmingham’s gay village just before Christmas, DI Zoe Finch and her team are perplexed.
Did their attacker mean to kill one of the men, or simply injure them both? And who would have the surgical skills for such a precise mutilation?
When more bodies are found with the same injuries, the city’s gay population is rightfully scared.
And then someone close to Zoe becomes a target…
Can Zoe and her team find the killer before it’s too late? And will the new members of the team help crack the case, or make things worse?
Silent Night by Nell Pattison
What happened while they were sleeping?
A school for the deaf takes an overnight trip to the snowy woods. Five teenagers go to sleep, but only four wake up. Leon is missing, and a teacher’s body is found in the forest…
Sign language interpreter Paige Northwood is brought in to help with interrogations. Everyone at the school has a motive for murder – but they all have an alibi.
As Paige becomes increasingly involved, she suspects there’s something sinister going on. With the clock ticking to find Leon, only one thing is certain: the killer is among them, and ready to strike again…
Christmas with the Conduit by Wes Markin
If you fail to stop a killer, then they will only grow stronger.
DCI Michael Yorke and Emma Gardner are still plagued by guilt over their failure to catch the murderous psychiatrist known as the Conduit, and the loss of their former colleague to insanity.
On Christmas Day, following a brutal massacre in Leeds, Yorke and Gardner find themselves once again chasing the ruthless puppeteer, believing that they have the initiative.
But as the two investigators draw closer to the Conduit, they quickly discover that they were never truly in control, and completely vulnerable to what comes next.
A rising tide of psychological warfare.
And the horrendous truth behind the fate of their former colleague.
Murder in Midwinter _ Ten Classic Crime Stories
Midwinter. As snow falls softly outside and frost sparkles on tree branches, it’s time to curl up before a roaring fire, wrap your hands around a steaming mug of mulled wine, and forget your worries for now.
But as the temperature drops outside, malice is sharpening its claws … and murder walks abroad. In these classic stories of mystery and mayhem, let ten of the great crime writers in history surprise and delight you with twists and turns as shocking as an icicle in the heart.
Featuring stories by Dorothy L. Sayers, Cyril Hare, Anthony Berkeley, Ruth Rendell, Margery Allingham, Ellis Peters … and more.
Murder on a Midnight Clear by Sara Rosett
A snowbound country mansion, a missing butler, and a Christmas case . . .
Olive and Jasper have never been closer—except in one area. Jasper is still reticent about his frequent disappearances from polite society. With the holidays approaching and no paying client on the books, Olive decides to shadow Jasper when he’s unexpectedly called away. Her search brings her to Holly Hill Lodge where an eclectic group has gathered to celebrate an old-fashioned English Christmas.
The guest list includes a celebrated lawn tennis champion, a fussy scientist studying snowflakes, a persuasive luggage salesman, a famous lady explorer, and the family’s eccentric aunt who has a fondness for the newfangled drinks called cocktails.
When the butler goes missing, Olive and Jasper must work together to solve the Christmas crime—as well as the secret Jasper hides. Murder on a Midnight Clear is the latest installment in USA Today bestselling author Sara Rosett’s popular High Society Lady Detective series.
Unwrap this 1920s Christmas mystery with all the trimmings—carols, a Yule log, plum pudding . . . and murder.
Christmas is Murder by Val McDermid
The Queen of Crime Val McDermid is a master of the dark and sinister story, and these powers are demonstrated in full force in Christmas is Murder, a festive collection of chilling tales.
From an irresponsible baron whose body is discovered beneath a silver birch tree, to an author who is haunted by the spiteful presence of a jealous writing partner, the characters McDermid conjures are enigmatic and dangerous, never above suspicion.
Follow Tony Hill and Carol Jordan as they track a deadly killer who is preparing to strike on Christmas Day, and lose yourself in a festive exclusive – a recently unearthed case for a classic detective duo, set as the lights are going out across Europe.
These evocative, atmospheric tales will shock and delight. This is the perfect book to curl up with as the frosty winter draws in and each night gets darker than the last, written by one of our greatest living crime writers.
The Dead of Winter by Nicola Upson
December 1938, and storm clouds hover once again over Europe. Josephine Tey and Archie Penrose gather with friends for a Cornish Christmas, but two strange and brutal deaths on St Michael’s Mount – and the unexpected arrival of a world famous film star, in need of sanctuary – interrupt the festivities. Cut off by the sea and a relentless blizzard, the hunt for a murderer begins.
Pivoting on a real moment in history, the ninth novel in the ‘Josephine Tey’ series draws on all the much-loved conventions of the Golden Age Christmas mystery, whilst giving them the contemporary twist which has come to distinguish the books so far.
19th Christmas by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
Christmas is coming, but crime never stops for the Women’s Murder Club.
Sergeant Lindsay Boxer is looking forward to spending time with her family over the holidays. But when she receives a tip-off that the biggest heist ever to hit San Francisco is being planned for Christmas Day, everything changes.
The architect of the ambitious attack unleashes chaos across the city, laying traps and false alarms to distract Lindsay and the SFPD from his ultimate goal.
As time runs out, will Lindsay be able to save the people of San Francisco from a Christmas they’d never forget?
Murder Most Festive by Ada Moncrieff
It’s Christmas at Westbury Manor and amateur detective Hugh Gaveston must unravel a fiendish mystery…
Christmas Eve, 1938. The Westbury family and assorted friends have gathered for another legendary celebration at their beautiful country house. The champagne flows, the silverware sparkles and upstairs the rooms are ready for their occupants.
But one bed will lie empty that night. On Christmas morning, David Campbell-Scott is found dead in the snow. There’s a pistol beside him and only one set of footprints.
Yet something doesn’t seem right to amateur sleuth Hugh Gaveston. Campbell-Scott had just returned from overseas with untold wealth – why would he kill himself? Hugh sets out to investigate…
Midwinter Murder by Agatha Christie
An all-new collection of winter-themed mysteries from the master of the genre, just in time for the festive period.
There’s a chill in the air and the days are growing shorter… It’s the perfect time to curl up in front of a crackling fireplace with this winter-themed collection from legendary mystery writer Agatha Christie. But beware of deadly snowdrifts and dangerous gifts, poisoned meals and mysterious guests. This compendium of short stories, some featuring beloved detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, is an essential omnibus for Christie fans and the perfect gift for mystery lovers.
The Dead of Winter by S J Parris
The Secret Dead
During the summer of 1566, a girl’s body is found within the walls of a Neapolitan monastery. Novice monk Giordano Bruno has a habit of asking difficult questions, but this time his investigations may lose him his place in the Dominican Order – or deliver him into the hands of the Inquisition.
The Academy of Secrets
An invitation arrives from a secret society of enlightened philosophers, led by the eccentric Don Giambattista della Porta. Bruno is captivated – even more so when he meets della Porta’s beautiful niece. But keeping these new heretical secrets soon becomes a matter of life or death…
A Christmas Requiem
When Giordano Bruno is told the pope wants to see him, he fears he may be walking into a trap. The pope is intrigued by Bruno’s talent for complex memory games, but Rome is a den of intrigue, trickery and blood, and Bruno will be lucky to escape the Eternal City alive.
*Please note these three novellas are also published as individual stories in ebook.*
A Surprise for Christmas edited by Martin Edwards
”After all,’ said our host, ‘it’s Christmas. Why not let the cat out of the bag?”
A Postman murdered while delivering cards on Christmas morning. A Christmas pine growing over a forgotten homicide. A Yuletide heist gone horribly wrong. When there’s as much murder as magic in the air and the facts seem to point to the impossible, it’s up to the detective’s trained eye to unwrap the clues and neatly tie together an explanation (preferably with a bow on top).
Martin Edwards has once again gathered the best of these seasonal stories into a stellar anthology brimming with rare tales, fresh as fallen snow, and classics from the likes of Julian Symons, Margery Allingham, Anthony Gilbert and Cyril Hare. A most welcome surprise indeed, and perfect to be shared between super-sleuths by the fire on a cold winter’s night.
A Christmas Carol Murder by Heather Redmond
The latest novel from Heather Redmond’s acclaimed mystery series finds young Charles Dickens suspecting a miser of pushing his partner out a window, but his fiancée Kate Hogarth takes a more charitable view of the old man’s innocence . . .
London, December 1835: Charles and Kate are out with friends and family for a chilly night of caroling and good cheer. But their blood truly runs cold when their singing is interrupted by a body plummeting from an upper window of a house. They soon learn the dead man at their feet, his neck strangely wrapped in chains, is Jacob Harley, the business partner of the resident of the house, an unpleasant codger who owns a counting house, one Emmanuel Screws.
Ever the journalist, Charles dedicates himself to discovering who’s behind the diabolical defenestration. But before he can investigate further, Harley’s corpse is stolen. Following that, Charles is visited in his quarters by what appears to be Harley’s ghost—or is it merely Charles’s overwrought imagination? He continues to suspect Emmanuel, the same penurious penny pincher who denied his father a loan years ago, but Kate insists the old man is too weak to heave a body out a window. Their mutual affection and admiration can accommodate a difference of opinion, but matters are complicated by the unexpected arrival of an infant orphan. Charles must find the child a home while solving a murder, to ensure that the next one in chains is the guilty party . . .
A Cotswold Christmas Mystery be Rebecca Tope
It’s Christmas, and things are looking good at the Slocombe house. Thea’s daughter Jessica has come to stay, much to her stepdaughter Stephanie’s delight. But then things take a turn for the worse. A local family, the Frowses, find themselves increasingly harassed by an aggressive landlord. When Beverley Frowse goes missing, Thea and Stephanie both feel they should do their best to help her husband and son to solve the mystery.
Christmas Day arrives. There are presents, a turkey, and general goodwill, despite Thea’s suppressed hankering to be involved in events at the Frowses’ house, where a dead man has been discovered…
A Snowball’s Chance in Hell by JD Kirk
Which list are you on?
When a young man is found frozen to death on a Highland street in mid-December, DCI Jack Logan initially puts it down to a Christmas night out gone tragically wrong.
But, when a post mortem reveals something more sinister, Jack discovers he is dealing with a cold, calculating killer with a long line of victims, a talent for torture, and a perverse sense of justice.
Half a decade ago, the press dubbed him ‘The Iceman’ – a twisted vigilante who successfully evaded capture for two years, before melting away into the night.
Now, The Iceman has come back. His naughty list is longer than ever.
And it contains some worryingly familiar names…
The Curator by MW Craven
It’s Christmas and a serial killer is leaving displayed body parts all over Cumbria. A strange message is left at each scene: #BSC6
Called in to investigate, the National Crime Agency’s Washington Poe and Tilly Bradshaw are faced with a case that makes no sense. Why were some victims anaesthetized, while others died in appalling agony? Why is their only suspect denying what they can irrefutably prove but admitting to things they weren’t even aware of? And why did the victims all take the same two weeks off work three years earlier?
And when a disgraced FBI agent gets in touch things take an even darker turn. Because she doesn’t think Poe is dealing with a serial killer at all; she thinks he’s dealing with someone far, far worse – a man who calls himself the Curator.
And nothing will ever be the same again . . .
The Darkest Evening by Ann Cleeves
Driving home during a swirling blizzard, Vera Stanhope’s only thought is to get there quickly.
But the snow is so heavy, she becomes disoriented and loses her way. Ploughing on, she sees a car slewed off the road ahead of her. With the driver’s door open, Vera assumes the driver has sought shelter but when she inspects the car she is shocked to find a young toddler strapped in the back seat.
Afraid they will freeze, Vera takes the child and drives on, arriving at Brockburn, a run-down stately home she immediately recognizes as the house her father Hector grew up in.
Inside Brockburn a party is in full swing, with music and laughter to herald the coming Christmas. But outside in the snow, a young woman lies dead and Vera knows immediately she has a new case. Could this woman be the child’s mother, and if so, what happened to her?
A Christmas Resolution by Anne Perry
When Celia Hooper discovers that her dear friend Clementine is to marry widower Seth Marlowe – a man with a sinister past – she calls upon her husband, Detective John Hooper of the Thames River Police, to help her find out what really happened to Seth’s first wife several years ago. Rumour has it that she killed herself and Seth’s daughter ran away to live on the streets but no one seems to know the truth.
Then Seth accuses Celia of sending him blackmail letters and it quickly becomes clear that she is not the only one trying to stop him from marrying Clementine. With Christmas fast approaching, lines are blurred, relationships are tested and the past won’t stay buried for ever . . .
A Christmas Resolution is an enthralling festive mystery set in Victorian London from the pen of the New York Times bestselling author Anne Perry.
Well done you’ve made it to the end! Hope you found something to add a bit of love, light and sparkle to your life.
Happy Christmas Reading!!