Rosie Hopkins, newly engaged, is looking forward to an exciting year - especially as the little sweetshop in Lipton she owns and runs continues to thrive. She's also enjoying helping out her best friend, Tina, as she prepares for her big wedding to local lad Jake. But fate is about to strike Rosie and her own fiance, Stephen, a terrible blow, threatening all they hold dear. And it is going to take all their strength, as well as the loving support of their families and their friends, to hold everything together. From GoodReads.
To me, this novel felt extremely forced and predictable. I knew Rosie was pregnant before she was, I knew what would happen when they visited the African village and I knew what the real ‘Christmas surprise’ reveal was going to be. I don’t mind knowing where the lovely happy ending is going and that everything is going to turn out to be fantastically alright by the end, but this novel just felt entirely too formulaic to be fun. It also lacked the trademark charm of Colgan’s writing – the love interests were fighting about some pretty serious issues, the surrounding townspeople lacked a lot of the humour and loveableness that attracted me to them and Lilian – the real gem of the novels – felt like an afterthought or a cameo appearance.
There was a lot of serious drama to wade through in The Christmas Surprise from heavy financial burdens to serious medical problems and deep family rifts. It felt to me that in trying to work out all these very serious issues, the book didn’t have time to get around to the fun and the magic of Christmas. Considering that Colgan’s was one of the first Christmas books I read, and something that got my heavily into the genre, this novel felt like a disappointment.