Review: 'Candlelight at Christmas' by Katie Fforde (2016)
Fenella and Rupert are organising the perfect Christmas, surrounded by their friends in their beautiful Somerby house.
Until Fenella gets a phone call from her ghastly parents-in-law asking if they can join them for the holiday. Fenella couldn't possibly refuse and besides, it could be worse.
But when they arrive and the house is suddenly plunged in darkness thanks to a power cut, Fenella knows she has her work cut out to keep everyone happy and pull off the perfect Christmas feast.
The Christmas season wouldn't be a good one without some great short stories to get us in a festive mood! Last year I really enjoyed author Katie Fforde's 'A Christmas in Disguise' and this year she is once again treating us to another Christmas-themed novella, 'Candlelight at Christmas.' This short story focuses on Fenella and Rupert Gainsborough who are celebrating Christmas with friends and family at their lovely home, Somerby. Fenella is dreading the arrival of her parents-in-law, who only seem to be able to complain about everything, and won't be satisfied. Unfortunately this Christmas seems to have quite a few surprises in store for them, making it even more challenging for Fenella to guarantee a merry Christmas for everyone....
Even though this is only the second year in which I've enjoyed a Katie Fforde festive short story, I wouldn't mind this turning into a yearly tradition! Katie's writing immediately got me feeling all festive and I honestly loved joining Fenella and Rupert in the lead-up to Christmas. I read this short story as a stand-alone because I'm not familiar with the books the characters first appeared in, but enough background information is given to still understand and enjoy the story. I specifically warmed to Meggie and Etienne, two young people who are both at Somerby for the holidays, and I really enjoyed the small plotline that focuses on them.
If you are in the mood for a quick festive read then I can highly recommend picking this up. It has that warm and cosy feeling, a gorgeous setting, interesting characters, some romantic sparks, and that overall lovely Christmas touch. I've once again been impressed by author Katie Fforde's writing and it's going to be a new year's resolution of mine to definitely read some of her other works next year. On the whole, 'Candlelight at Christmas' is a stunning festive read; a short story you won't regret making time for, even if it's just to sit down and have a sweet escape from all the holiday preparation madness...!