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Christmas at Bay Tree Cottage (Christmas in the Country, Book 2) Kindle Edition
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Eve and her husband have already hired a building firm and Luke offers to do work for Elana to fit in with her budget and his free time, doing them both a favour. Both he and Elana are suffering emotionally. Luke’s wife has left him and he only gets to see his young son for a few hours on the weekends. During the time Luke spends at Bay Tree Cottage and despite the age difference (Elana is ten years older than Luke) she and Luke become close.
Told from both Elana’s and Luke’s perspectives, the reader is privy to their thoughts and emotions, giving them depth. They have their children, and the wish to give them the best life they can in common, creating a growing bond. Luke has given up his dream job to join the family firm in order to be around and provide for his family. He is very mature for his age, which I thought at first a little unrealistic, but as the story develops it becomes more obvious his situation has forced him to grow up quickly.
I appreciate the fact that the relationship between Luke and Elana evolves slowly, initially with friendship as Luke spends more time working at the cottage. It’s a while before they realise it might be something more. And also because they both have other opportunities it doesn’t seem contrived. Elana is a strong character, coping on her own and in the midst of such a large renovation project. Dealing with loss is never easy and Christmas must be especially difficult to get through, but Maya keeps Elana focussed. Her situation felt very real, coping with the chaos of the cottage, the run up to Christmas and a little girl who only wants the fire lit.
It’s not your regular Christmas romance, it has depth, emotion and new beginnings. And as always, there’s a touch of the supernatural, which is a lovely addition.
Elana's cottage still needs a great deal of renovation, when her parents give her a helping hand builder, Luke is the man for the job, but suddenly his presence threatens her self-imposed celibacy and makes her wish for things she thought she never would again.
The story is charming full of humour and poignant moments as Elana and Luke discover kindred spirits and try to make their children's Christmas magical and memorable. Maya and Joe, the children in the story, are insightful portrayals.
The plot is surprising, and not everyone or their lives is as it first seems. It captures the essence of Christmas believably and contains just enough magic to have you believing in Santa.
I received a copy of this book from Harper Impulse via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Heartwarming and and easily believable book that you could see your neighbors experiencing. After the death of her husband Elana James is a grieving widow with a young daughter. At the time of her husband's death work was not complete on the cottage she bought with her husband,Bay Tree Cottage. As she saves up the money she piece by piece gets the repairs done on her cottage. Luke works for his dad's construction company and agrees to do work for her at off peak times and charge her a cheaper price than the going rate. He's just happy to have the work since he's paying child support for his young little boy, Joey he has. Elana is happy to have Luke doing the work for her even at unconventional hours like dinner time and in the evening. She makes him dinner a lot of evenings while he's working then they go into her sitting room and discuss house repair plans. She is very professional about this and there is no hint of a romance brewing at all. Luke starts thinking he just may need Elana in his life in a romantic way but is afraid to show her that as she may not think the timing is right. Elana's daughter, really needs Luke to finish the chimney work before Christmas so her her oh so important letters can get to Santa. Smart,capable and good looking Luke delivers too. No little girl being disappointed in this story! Bring in the fact that Elana is 10 years older than Luke and has more worldly experience you can see where her hesitation to start a romance stems from after all this woman is no cougar. The heart doesn't always hear what the head is thinking though!
Wonderful feel good book.
Pub Date 27 Oct 2017
Thank you to NetGalley and HarperCollins UK, HarperImpulse for a review copy in exchange for my honest review.
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