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2 January 2014

Review: 'Wish Upon a Star' by Trisha Ashley (2013)

The perfect gift isn’t always under the tree…

Single mum Cally’s life is all about her little girl Stella. She’s resigned to the fact that the only romance she’s going to get is from the rom-coms she watches, and with her busy job and her daughter, she doesn’t have time to even think about love.

But life gets very tough when Stella gets sick. Balancing her job as a recipe writer and looking after Stella is all consuming, so when Cally meets handsome baker Jago the last thing she wants to do is fall in love, especially when she’s been badly burned by a Prince Charming from her past. Can laid-back, charming Jago unlock Cally’s frozen heart and help her find true love and magic under the mistletoe?

I’ve heard from multiple people that the holiday season wouldn’t quite be the same without a Christmassy Trisha Ashley novel to keep us company, so this year I was quite curious to read my very first Trisha Ashley book! I was lucky enough to receive a review copy of Trisha’s latest festive release, ‘Wish Upon a Star’, from the lovely people at Light Brigade PR. I saved the book for the days leading up to Christmas and snuggled up on the couch with a blanket, soft Christmas music in the background, and a cup of delicious hot chocolate to step into the world of Sticklepond!

When Cally found herself pregnant, she was dumped by her boyfriend Adam and forced to start a life as a single mum. Luckily, she was blessed with her daughter Stella and together they lead a happy life. However, Stella was born with a serious heart condition which required major surgery. Now, three years later, the doctors in the UK can’t help Stella anymore and in order for her to lead a normal and long life, Cally will have to take her daughter to the USA so she can undergo experimental heart surgery. Cally sells her flat in London to raise part of the money that is needed for the trip to Boston, and moves back to her mother’s house in the small village Sticklepond. All the villagers are up to help raise the money needed for Stella’s operation, but one of them in particular catches Cally and Stella’s attention; Jago is also new to the area and works together with his best friend David in a macaron shop, waiting for the right property to come along to start his own croquembouche (French wedding cake) business. Cally loves spending time with Jago, but she knows she can only focus on Stella right now. However, when their exes Adam and Aimee suddenly reappear on the stage, Cally is forced to deal with multiple things at the same time...

This book has everything to make it a thoroughly enjoyable chick lit read: a lovely leading lady, a handsome Prince Charming, a good storyline, a gorgeous scene setting, and lots of yummy treats! Trisha Ashley’s writing is extremely detailed which resulted in a very clear picture of the village of Sticklepond and its inhabitants in my head. I’ve read that the village is also the backdrop for some of Trisha’s other novels, but the fact that I hadn’t read any of those before starting ‘Wish Upon a Star’ didn’t bother me at any point. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about the fundraising for Stella, the blooming friendship between Jago and Cally, and the arrival of the exes, Aimee and Adam, in town.

Cally writes articles about baking for a job and this aspect is woven into the storyline in an absolutely delicious way. Not only does Trisha’s writing leave the reader with images of yummy cakes and goodies, but there are also some recipes at the back of the book for everyone to try out. Even though the novel wasn’t as festive and Christmassy as I had originally expected, my first Trisha Ashley book certainly did not disappoint and I can’t wait to read more of her work. ‘Wish Upon a Star’ is an inspiring, heart-warming treat for the holidays and a great read to curl up with in front of the log fire!


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