Who doesn’t love a quirky old book store?
Carmen has always been in the shadow of her successful sister, Sofia. Sofia is a lawyer, with perfect children, perfect husband, perfect nanny, perfect home in the most perfect of all Edinburgh neighborhoods. Meanwhile, Carmen partied, didn’t try in school and now even the dull job in a fusty local department store has deserted her. Her mother and sister conspire and she gets a new job in a bookstore lawyer Sofia is trying to get profitable enough to sell it as a going concern so her client will at least get out from under it. And, she’s been given a new home–a former servant’s room in her sisters basement. Next door to the perfect nanny.
Meanwhile, the bookshop hasn’t been dusted since soon after the war and the man who runs it is afraid of his own shadow. His cataloging system defies imagination and he is prone to giving the books away. But, it’s Christmas in Edinburgh, the shop is on the main shopping street and a host of good-looking men come in, including mega-selling author Blare. Maybe Carmen’s life is looking up? In spite of helping with her two nieces and one nephew who go to schools so posh they remind each other constantly to be “kind?”
I especially liked the way the relationships improved between Carmen and the children, Carmen and her sister and Carmen and her boss, “Young” Mr. McCredie. These were wonderful. I liked the men in the store, too. Ramsey would have been my pick if he wasn’t so encumbered!
But my very favorite characters were Phoebe and the little girl who loved the Little Match Girl. Those were little girls to whom I could well relate!
This was a good book to escape into. I loved it. The Muppet Christmas Carol watching scene was classic!! (Stick around for the aftermath of that!) And then there was the magic of creating the window display with the train set and the house of sweet little mice and on and on and on. Only one tiny thing–Eric’s father–seemed not to fit. I’m not sure why the author did that, but it’s her book and not mine. I loved this book–have I said that already?
Just read it!
The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan