Put some whipped cream and sprinkles on it because Christmas Charms by Teri Wilson is the perfect Christmas treat.
I was fortunate enough to receive an advance reader copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The story of Ashley and Aidan was exactly what I needed this year.
Christmas Charms Indeed
This book blog is all about how books are subjective. Sometimes we need exactly a certain type of book while other times we just won’t connect with that book. I needed Christmas Charms.
I needed a nod to Tiffany’s glamor and Audrey Hepburn and the perfect lakeside Christmas complete with the town Christmas tree and toy parades and firefighters. (Who doesn’t need firefighters???) Most of all, I needed a yellow dog named Fruitcake.
This contemporary romance from Hallmark Publishing had me Christmas charmed. Ashley James works in the charms department at Windsor Fine Jewelry in New York (think Tiffany’s). She’s set to spend the holidays with her boyfriend’s family in Paris. When her co-worker and friend finds her boyfriend buying an engagement ring, Ashley assumes it’s for her.
Except it’s not.
Let’s Get Magical
The ring turns out to be a misunderstanding, but Ashley suddenly realizes where their relationship isn’t going when her boyfriend says they’re not the marrying type. Finding herself with the time off and no where to go now that she’s dumped her not the marrying type boyfriend, Ashley heads home for the holidays to Owl Lake, a small town in the Adirondacks.
Cue the twinkling lights and everything gingerbread.
Yes, this is a small town Christmas romance with firefighters. Yes, Ms. Wilson knows her target demographic.
But here’s where it gets good.
On the train, Ashley meets Betty, a sweet old woman who reminds Ashley of Mrs. Claus. The woman has a vintage Christmas charm bracelet Ashley admires. Of course, Ashley falls asleep on the train and when she awakens, Betty is gone. Except she’s left her charm bracelet and a note for Ashley asking her to wear the bracelet and have the Christmas of her dreams.
Enter Owl Lake and a Cast of Characters
I am a sucker for small town romance, and Christmas Charms delivered.
Owl Lake is exquisite and captures Ms. Wilson’s talent as a writer. I loved her nuanced dialogue, her pointed descriptions of setting, and most of all, I loved her ability to understand what it means to come home at Christmas.
If you want a small town Christmas romance about second chances and coming home, this is it.
The Naughty and Nice List
There is much I loved about this book, but what I loved most was the hint of magic. I don’t want a book to come out and say it’s magic. I want the permission to believe in magic again. Christmas Charms did that for me.
The one thing on the naughty list for me was this: I wanted more insight into Aidan.
It’s a first person story! I am asking for the moon here. But maybe Ms. Wilson could write a sequel? Maybe? Huh?
Put on your fuzzy socks and curl up by the fire. Your perfect Christmas is waiting.