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Christmas for Beginners Reader Reviews

Christmas for Beginners

Sandra Bishop

Festive farmyard frolics with Molly and her mottley crew of misfits. Christmas can't get more Fluffy than this can it?

The farmyard frolics turn decidedly festive in Carole's latest offering, Christmas for Beginners. Owner of Hope Farm Molly Baker and her support network of Bev and Alan have settled in well following the farm's relocation to pastures new (literally) but the issue of funding is never far from their minds. Gregarious Bev is on the case as ever and soon has the troops rallied for a Christmas Fayre event to be held at the farm. I mean, after the success of previous events what could possibly go wrong?
Molly's new romantic partner Shelby is significant by his absence - it's a wonder they are a couple at all as they are poles apart personality-wise but they do say opposites attract. Shelby's teenage son Lucas, has moved in to the plush new caravan with Molly, the two of them having a more parent/child relationship than either of them could hope for Lucas to have with his father - but there must be something in the air as Lucas is spending less time at home with Molly and more time at the poetry club in the village. But that's a good thing, right?
We are introduced to a wonderful selection of characters from throughout the local community from the dishy Mayor, who Bev has commandeered to switch on their Christmas lights, to the troubled parents of one of the students who attend Molly's classes at the farm, plus many others besides. There are also new resident animals on the farm who provide some hilarious moments - the old favourites are still going strong too thank goodness but if they keep trying to eat the cast of the nativity scene there could well be trouble!
This is a proper feel-good festive read, just what we need after the awful year we've had in the real world of 2020. It's not all starry-eyed happiness though, as Molly is left wondering if she's bitten off more than she can chew in taking on the role of Lucas's guardian in Shelby's continued absence. Help comes from an unexpected source in more ways than one and once more Carole leaves us with a warm glow of contentment as we turn the last page.

Sarah Jones

A cosy, comfy read! Snuggle up warm and enjoy!

The thoroughly likeable and relatable Molly Baker, from Happiness for Beginners is back. It doesn't matter at all whether you read the first book about Molly and Hope Farm, just dive straight in! Molly runs Hope Farm for ill or abandoned animals, they also provide education opportunities for children who struggle in school. In the lead up to Christmas, the painfully shy Molly has to put her worries aside in order to raise money and do the best for the farm. She also has to deal with her absent partner, famous actor Shelby, and his struggling teenage son Lucas, as well as control and take care of all of the animals! This book was warm, cosy and comfy. Perfect to snuggle up with, maybe even with a hot chocolate or glass of wine at your side. Perfect escapism from the real world. It left me with a smile on my face and a warm fuzzy glow!

Nikki Whitmore

A cosy Christmas read.

When it's dark outside and things don't seem all that great, the best thing to make yourself feel better is to snuggle up with a Christmas read. This was the perfect book for taking your mind off things. I loved Hope Farm and all its inhabitants (both human and animal), especially Molly and her step-son of sorts, Lucas. They have such a lovely relationship and both seem so real that you can't help but live through their trials and tribulations with them. I hadn't read the first book in this series (you don't need to have) but I really hope there are more stories from Hope Farm to come.

P.S Sign me up for a date with the Hot Mayor!


Jocelyn F Garvey

A lovely heart-warming book about the owners and inhabitants of Hope Farm. A pleasure to read, Lots of laughs and a few tears. Just the book to forget ‘Lockdown’ and remember that there are nice people in the world. A happy book.

Molly owns and lives, in a caravan, on Hope Farm. She takes local students – her glorious students – misfits from normal education and finds ways to help them integrate into life.
She lives there with her partner, Shelby, his son Lucas and various animals, mostly strays and misfits too.
Her helper Bev has the great idea of having a Christmas Fair to raise local awareness of the Farm and raise funds too.
This is the story of their efforts, the ups and downs, mad alpacas, wandering goats, 3 legged dogs etc.
Almost anything that can happen does but they between them manage to sort everything out in the end but taking the journey with them is worthwhile.


Book Information

ISBN: 9780751580136
Publication date: 29th October 2020
Author: Carole Matthews
Publisher: Sphere an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 416 pages
Genres: Books of the Month, Relationship Stories, Star Books,
Categories: Adult & contemporary romance,