- File Size: 1723 KB
- Print Length: 176 pages
- Publisher: Little Bear Books (October 1, 2017)
- Publication Date: October 1, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0763NR1GW
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,192,433 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Charlee and the Chocolate Shop: A Heartwarming Tale of Two Christmases (Christmas on Castle Street) Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
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The characters of Charlee and her best friend Jodie are well-written and I almost wish they were my friends. These ladies epitomize the idea of friends who are really family. That’s particularly important as Charlee grapples with having no family left after the passing of her grandparents. There are some heart wrenching scenes at the beginning of the novel where Charlee deals with no longer having her Nana. They are beautifully written and identifiable for anyone who has lost an older relative.
When Charlee moves to Whitsborough, we are introduced to Castle Street and the business owners there. The sense of community described among the small business owners is quite delightful and highlights the small town feel of the story. Castle Street also provides a gorgeous Christmas backdrop.
“Castle Street was the perfect setting for that magical Christmas feeling. Full of Victorian character buildings housing independent businesses, there were cobbles (not that you could see them now for the snow), old-fashioned lamps, and almost a Dickensian feel to the place.”
The friendship that builds between Matt and Charlee is naturally developed and moves along at a nice easy pace. Where flashbacks are needed for a backstory, they are tidily thrown in and enhance the flow of the novel.
My only peeve about the novel is that all the ends are tied up a bit too neatly and effortlessly. The main characters are always the good guys. They don’t have to take a tough stance or make a decision that might hurt anyone. It’s sweet but not everyone can be that lucky. A little more angst would have been icing on this chocolate cake.
Some things I liked:
You must have fallen in love with the cover art for this story. It’s just too gorgeous.
Nana’s colour-coordinated Christmas tree decoration themes. Matches my own inclination, even if not my actual execution.
The extra stories woven in. This is not just a romance tale. It’s a family story and a little bit of a mystery too.
There are several very moving scenes where Charlee deals with her grandparents, mother and even Darren.
Something I did not like:
I needed a little more angst. It is Christmas but every story arc didn’t have to be so neatly wrapped up with a bow on top.
If you are looking for your next Christmas read, this is it!!! Family, love, decorations, friendship and chocolate… it’s the perfect tale for the season.
And if the story is just wonderful, it’s also quite beautifully told. I really enjoyed the writing – vivid descriptions that sweep you away into Charlee’s world (the turning on of the Christmas lights brought a tear to my eye…), the detail around setting up the business and the making of the chocolate, the little exchanges in the shop, perfectly written dialogue, and characters that quickly became my friends too. And despite all that wonderful chocolate, the story wasn’t too sweet for my taste – the ups and downs of the relationship with Darren and the family issues were so well done, and some of the characters have complications in their backgrounds that might surprise you.
A thoroughly lovely read, and one that most definitely warmed my heart and gave me a Christmas glow. I’ve never visited Whitsborough before, but I think it’s a destination I’d really like to visit again… I bet it’s lovely in the summer too…