Reviewed by Susan Lobban
Cassie Smith’s life has been in the doldrums since she lost her job and now Christmas is approaching it fills her with dread rather than the usual joy. Job interviews are going nowhere and the highlight of her day is deciding what to have for dinner. People say stick to what you know and Cassie knows Christmas so she decides to create a business centred around her favourite time of year.
Calling Mrs Christmas is born and what starts as writing a few festive cards soon snowballs into decking out a multi-millionaire’s mansion. With the help of her boyfriend and sister, she is able to bring Christmas spirit into homes and businesses all across town and she loves every minute of it.
When Cassie meets Carter Randall, her business reaches new heights. Then, Carter invites her on a dream trip to Swedish Lapland that she has planned for his family, which is the icing on the cake.
Cassie’s new venture helps her fall in love with Christmas all over again, but will she fall out of love with her old life in the process?
I love Christmas books and as soon as December 1st arrives, they are all I read, so when Calling Mrs Christmas arrived in the post, I was all too happy to start my festive reading early.
Cassie was made redundant unexpectedly and she thought a new job would be around the corner. Unfortunately, eight months on, she is still waiting for opportunity to knock and the expense of Christmas is approaching. She has the brain wave of offering a Christmas service for people who are too busy to get organised. Her always supportive boyfriend Jim jumps on board too, but he gets more than he bargained for when his nights are spent learning calligraphy or dressing up as Santa.
Cassie’s idea for her new business venture is inspired and a realistically great way of filling a gap in the market. I soon immersed myself in Cassie’s growing plans and could not help becoming swept up in all the festivities. Every time I put this book down, I was disappointed to find it wasn’t actually December and I couldn’t start some of Cassie’s ideas.
Since the first day they met, Cassie and Jim have been inseparable, but as we follow their home and work lives, we see cracks starting to appear. Jim works with young offenders whereas Cassie is working with wrapping paper, so their careers are poles apart and this begins to seep into their cosy home life. As much as they are a lovely couple, I could see why Cassie is tempted with Carter, her millionaire client, but good on her sister Gaby for being the voice of reason and saying what I, as the reader, was thinking. Right to the end I was kept guessing who Cassie would choose and she was such a great character that I know I wouldn't have been disappointed with her choice either way.
Calling Mrs Christmas is a heart-warming story about how the festive season can bring people together. I devoured this book just as quickly as a mince pie and recommend you add this to your letter to Santa immediately.
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