Tuesday 28 October 2014

Review ~ Christmas at the Cove by Rachel Brimble.

Title: Christmas at the Cove.
Author: Rachel Brimble.
Publisher: Harlequin.
Genre: Romance.
Publication Date: November 1, 2014.
Source: Review copy.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.

Purchase: Amazon UK

More family for Christmas?

Scott Walker doesn't have time for a relationship. The sexy mechanic has career ambitions, not to mention a mother and three sisters to take care of. The last thing he needs is Carrie Jameson, the beauty he never forgot, arriving in Templeton Cove over the holidays with some unexpected news.

Scott still finds Carrie irresistible, and he's not one to shirk responsibility. Scott's issues with his own dad make the prospect of parenthood a minefield. But if he and Carrie can overcome their fears, this Christmas could bring them the best gift of all.

Christmas at the Cove is a beautiful book – Rachel Brimble’s first Christmas novel and I’m really hoping it won’t be the last. It felt warm, inviting and homely and combined with the sizzling chemistry between Carrie and Scott, I’d say Christmas at the Cove is perfect reading material for a cold winter’s night. We soon learn upon Carrie’s return to Templeton Cove that she has something important to tell Scott – the news that he has a two year old daughter called Belle. The moment we learnt this, I knew exactly where I wanted the book to end up because I always want to hear of kids having the perfect Christmas because at that age, Christmas is the most magical time of year. Christmas at the Cove focuses more on the build up to Christmas rather than the chaotic event itself and so it was fascinating to see how it would capture the essence of the festive season. I thought the snow and the present shopping and the food, alongside a lovely family-orientated story, made this a gorgeous Christmassy read and an uplifting one too.

This is the second of Rachel’s Templeton Cove books I’ve read, having reviewed the brilliant What Belongs to Her back in March, and it’s a setting I love reading about. Everybody seems to know each other which does mean that you might get a busybody or a stirrer involved somewhere – Amanda was definitely the trouble-causer here – but despite its imperfections the sense of community is strong and charming to read. Whether it was Carrie’s brief chats with Marian and Angela or Scott’s moments with his best friends Nick and Kevin, Christmas at the Cove focuses strongly on relationships and the dialogue that comes with them and I think Rachel did a great job at building these up. The character development was done really well and in Scott and Carrie, I found two characters that I absolutely loved.

Scott’s one of my favourite leading male characters I’ve read and not just because he sounded like a complete hunk, honest. I liked him right from the enticing prologue but then we meet him again a few years later and his obvious love, dedication and loyalty to his family and close friends was so endearing, I couldn’t help but want my own Scott. You could just tell he would do absolutely anything to protect the people he cared about but that didn’t make his character flat and dull because he still had that other, edgier side to him which could charm 99% of women that set their eyes on him and his character was a lot of fun too. I loved Carrie’s character as well. Even though I didn’t agree with her keeping Belle a secret from Scott for the first two years of her life, I still thought she was brave given what she had been going through and I could understand any apprehension she had. I liked how her daughter was always at the forefront of her mind and she wouldn’t let anything get in the way of making sure her daughter would be safe and happy. I just love reading stories which focus on families – moving stories and not overly dramatic stories – and Christmas at the Cove fit the bill.

I raced through this novel and I can’t deny I’m a little sad it’s over. But only because I thought it was a fantastic read and I’m sure it will be one of my favourite Christmas books this year. I loved it. It was about not only the hope of building a new family but also the devotion and solidarity of a family under threat by something from their past. It was a sweet story but combined with the obvious attraction and sexual chemistry between Scott and Carrie, it was much more than just a sweet story. With a stunning ending, Christmas at the Cove was a fun, heart-warming and truly gratifying novel.

Review also posted on Goodreads


  1. I should buy this, it sounds great!

    1. And update, I have just bought it... Such a good review!

    2. Oh thank you! I really hope you enjoy it like I did :)

  2. I have been so thrilled with this review that I forgot to thank you, Sophie!! I am so embarrassed, lol! Spending your Sunday with my book and taking the time to write such an in-depth review is fantastic - thank you SO much!

    Hope you enjoy the book Librarian Lavender :D

    Rachel x

    1. Haha - no worries Rachel! It was my pleasure and reading Christmas at the Cove was the perfect way to spend my Sunday :) x

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