Helllllo readers, I’m not usually one for Christmas stories but as I’ve been getting into the Christmas spirit a little earlier especially with all the Christmas markets I’ve been visiting I thought a festive read would be fitting. This year I’ll have (hopefully) done Birmingham twice and also Manchester and both I am sure will be wonderful. It’s a shame this year I’m not going with my parents but the weekends just haven’t added up but I thought today I would read and review for you a super short but super sweet Christmas story. Enjoy!
With Christmas just around the corner, the residents of Skipley village are gearing up for the annual bake off, and tensions are high. Winning means a lot to everyone involved – talented cake-shop owner Katie dreams of baking stardom, Rachel wants to prove she’s more than a stay-at-home mum, and John hopes his culinary skills will impress the woman he loves.
But when the judges discover that some cakes have been tampered with, the villagers’ loyalties are called into question – whose ambition would stretch to sabotage, and why? The Christmas Bake Off is an exclusive short story from Abby Clements, author of Meet Me Under the Mistletoe. This ebook edition also includes bonus recipes for cinnamon cookies and vanilla and almond biscuits.
As the blurb suggests the book follows a baking competition in a lovely little English village. Among the competitors are Katie who wants to make herself known more professionally in the baking world and Rachel who desperately wants to prove she’s more than ‘just a home baker.’ Baking a gingerbread house desperate to impress the judges – there’s a problem. Sabotage? Who will be the winner? Who has tried to stop the competition winning? All will be revealed in this ‘christmassy’ baking read.
Did I enjoy this festive tale? Yes, don’t get me wrong it is incredibly short – you could plow through this on a lunch-break or a longer bus journey but it does pack a festive punch. The characters although lacking in-depth come across strongly and have lovingly created personalities. Although the plot does use the sabotage of the cakes to bring drama it is all very light-hearted and sweet. The bake-off, rural village was played up to make this a really sweet read and I did feel incredibly festive reading it.
I did think that there could have been deeper insights into the characters. The book is very, very (very) short and a couple of extra chapters that could have introduced a sub-plot would have helped to fill out the book a little more. The recipe at the back is a welcome addition and I cannot wait to give them a try and bake some Christmas goodies but the book didn’t quite deliver for me in terms of enjoyment. There is a smidgen of romance between two of the bakers which could have been developed but wasn’t quite enough for me to really invest myself in.
Overall this is the perfect lunch-break read when you just need a minute away from the computer, or curled up on the sofa with a hot-chocolate after a long day at work. It’s a sweet read, with a sweet ending. I found myself wanting more from this due to its short length, but for a couple of pennies on Amazon it’s definitely worth a read.