Lucy loves running Chocolate Heaven but she hasn't spent time with her boyfriend, Aiden, in weeks. And then her ex-fiance turns up and things become even more complicated.
Nadia hasn't let herself get close to a man in a long time, yet she can't help feeling drawn to Jacob. Will he be her last chance for a happy ending?
Chantal and her husband, Ted, are besotted with their baby daughter Lana - but she's not sure that's enough to base a marriage on.
Autumn is dealing with a tragedy that has hit too close to home. But when she doesn't get the support she needs from her fiance, will she look elsewhere for comfort?
Can friendship overcome all in . . . The Chocolate Lovers' Christmas. (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon.)
I came to this book having read and enjoyed several of Carole's recent books, but having never read any of the "Chocolate Lovers" books before. I did wonder if i would enjoy this one as much as the previous ones because of this, would I be missing essential information, would I bond with the characters?
Well I can wholeheartedly see why Carole's readers love this series so much and were excited about there being more from these characters. These are fantastic characters who are all different but united in their love of chocolate and the chocolate lovers' club and the strong friendships this enables. All of their stories were very distinct and each very intriguing in their own right. Even though I had a particular soft spot for Autumn (who is very giving, but has a sadness about her you want to be resolved), I was equally engaged with each character's stories and dilemmas, of which there are many. This is so important when each chapter switches between the characters. Each character's story was strong and there were certainly plenty of comical, cringeworthy as well as 'nooooo!' moments which kept me gripped. A lot of the time I really couldn't guess how things would turn out.
Throughout the book there were references to past events/relationships and behaviours, which made me feel up to speed with the histories of the characters and how they might have changed since the first novel. However, this was cleverly done as to not spoil the previous novels. I'm sure I'd still enjoy reading them now, even if I knew what the outcomes were.
I thought the book completely delivered in its festiveness as well as how it makes you salivate with references to chocolate. I wish i could eat as much yummy chocolate as these women do!
There will be a further "Chocolate Lovers" novel coming in January, and whilst I was satisfied with the conclusions in this novel, it also left me intrigued as to how things would develop for each one of the characters in the future.
If you haven't read any of this series before, you could start with this one. It certainly fits as a stand-alone book. Although I enjoyed it so much, I'd definitely recommend going back to the beginning and enjoy all of the series and the friendships of these fantastic ladies.
I have read the first two books of the "Chocolate Lovers" series in the past and really enjoyed both, so I was more than eager to read The Chocolate Lovers' Christmas. (I made an exception, as I don't normally read Christmas-themed novels.) I can say with confidence that it didn't disappoint one bit!
It was so great to be reunited with Lucy, Chantel, Nadia, and Autumn after several years apart. It was good that Carole put in reminders of what had happened in the past, as I forgot some of the story lines. (I did remember others though.) Having said that, this book can be read independently of the others, even though I encourage you to read the first two because they're just THAT fabulous! Since I did read the previous two, I would say that there are some spoilers in this one, especially with Nadia's situation.
Each woman had her own interesting circumstance and some good romantic story lines fit into the novel, as well. They were all sympathetic characters and I found myself wanting to give them a big hug at various points of the story. The "Chocolate Lovers" series reminds me of the "Traveling Pants" series by Ann Brashares, but this time with adults and chocolate to bond everyone together.
The only part I could have done without is a scene that is similar to one in Dumb and Dumber, but that's all I'll say for now.
Overall, this was another wonderful installment and it has some suspense leading into the next novel in the series, which comes out really soon.
I've finally come up with a movie cast, at least for the four "Chocolate Lovers."
Lucy: Emilia Clarke
Chantel: Kate Winslet
Nadia: Parminder Nagra
Autumn: Emily Blunt
Thanks to Sphere and Carole Matthews (respectively) for the book in exchange for an honest review. We have one copy for a lucky reader anywhere in the world, courtesy of Carole.
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