Rachels Random Resources & Boldwood Books presents
Christmas at Lock Keeper’s Cottage
by author Lucy Coleman
published September 3, 2020
Here is a little about the book:
Join us for Christmas in the Cotswolds in this perfect festive escape, from the bestselling Lucy Coleman.
Imogen Tolliman never knew her mother. And when an accident robs Immi of her father too, she goes to live with her grandfather, Tollie, in his picturesque lock-keeper’s cottage by the Aysbury marina.
Tollie is the star of the Santa Ahoy Special each Christmas – a festive boat ride along the canal that enthralls both children and adults alike. And as Immi grows up, she starts to appreciate the magical community she is lucky enough to live in.
When Immi meets Gray Adams, she instantly realises he’s someone special. And as their relationship gets serious, they start to plan for the Christmas to beat all Christmases.
But as the day approaches, and the romantic snow showers turn into blizzards, their dream of a Christmas to remember, looks set to be one they’ll never forget – for all the wrong reasons. Can they salvage the festivities, or will old secrets that are finally uncovered turn Immi’s life upside down forever?
Let Lucy Coleman transport you away to a dreamy Cotswolds Christmas full of snowflakes and secrets, log fires, mistletoe, friends and much-loved traditions. Perfect for all fans of Trisha Ashley, Holly Martin and Sue Moorcroft.
I have another Christmas book for you again today, and this one comes from the brilliant Lucy Coleman. If you keep reading you will find a delightful excerpt too! I’m thrilled to be reviewing this one for Lucy, Boldwood Books and Rachels Random Resources.
Imogen Tolliman has had it tough, her mother left when she was a baby and then her father passes away when she is 14. Immi moves in with her grandfather in the small village of Aysbury, and growing up in this small community, it has immediately become her surrogate family. When Immy is older and finally in a meaningful relationship of her own, planning a future and engagement announcement at a small Christmas dinner, a freak snowstorm overtakes their little town and leaves everyone stranded. Now with unexpected overnight guests, Immi’s perfect Christmas has changed and is not the holiday night that she originally anticipated.
Filled with a heartwarming tale of family, friends and the importance of community, Lucy Coleman brings us another Christmas themed hit that is comparable to a Hallmark Movie. The characters are full of charisma, the town is charming, and the overall theme of the tale is quite enjoyable. There are some tones of dealing with loss and the importance of communication, that pull the story together and make it extremely realistic, and some last minute secrets and revelations that brings the story to a moving ending. If you need a holiday fix in the middle of September, this is defiantly your book!
A wonderful read!
Thank you so much to Lucy Coleman, Rachel Gilbey from Rachels Random Resources, Boldwood Books, and Netgalley for my gifted copy of this book for my honest and unbiased opinion.
Deck the Hull with Boughs of Holly
‘I’m just about to turn off the main road, Immi. Let the countdown to Christmas begin.’
‘At last,’ I croak, although the sound of Gray’s voice makes me instantly break out into a beaming smile.
In the background, the thrum of the car’s engine sounds eerily distant, but it’s a relief to know he will be here very soon. The thought of sinking into his arms again fills me with nervous anticipation and yet another part of me hates feeling so… needy. There’s an emptiness that gnaws away at me when he isn’t around, which nothing else can fill.
‘What’s wrong with your voice? Please don’t—’
The signal drops out for a second or two, and I imagine the car negotiating the bend as he heads away from the village hall, which sits proudly alongside a magnificent green. Originally a farming community before the lock was built and – much later – the marina, Aysbury is rather spread out. There are some large country properties set back from the road behind high walls, before the first cluster of farm cottages signals the approach to the canal. But our community extends both sides of the waterway, with a network of narrow lanes giving tantalising glimpses of a variety of old stone cottages and barn conversions.
Beyond that, the winding lane dips for several hundred yards and the tall swathe of trees are an impenetrable barrier. ‘… not coming down… something.’
I grip the phone tighter, raising my voice a little as I reassure him. ‘No. I’m fine. Really, I’m good.’
There’s a short pause and I’m sure we’ve been disconnected, then the thrumming sound is back, and the engine kicks up a notch as the car accelerates along the open stretch of road. Almost here. He’s almost here.
‘You’re not crying, are you, Immi?’
Drawing in a deep breath, then taking a moment to expel it in a controlled manner, I make a concerted effort to sound bright and breezy.
‘The Christmas magic has begun with the most inspiring, heart-warming and tenderest of moments. And it’s down to a seven-year-old boy, named Billy.’ As I swipe away a wayward teardrop with the sleeve of the new, bright green elf jacket, an overwhelming sense of happiness lifts my spirits.
‘Ah, Immi. That’s wonderful. This is going to be one a-ma-zing Christmas, I can feel it in ma bones, ma bones, feel it in my bones bi-ba-bi-ba doo bah doo.’ Gray, being Gray, launches into song. Without any warning my heart misses a beat, as excitement leaps up inside me. It’s been six weeks since he was last here; the longest six weeks of my life.
‘I’ve been trying on the new elf costume. I’ll do a quick change and then head up to The Bullrush Inn. See you there in ten. Watch out for stray sheep in the lane by Adler’s farm. Two are still on the loose after a breakout last night.’
‘The boys are back,’ he sings and starts laughing. ‘Oh, that’s baad news, really baad,’ he jokes, and I roll my eyes. ‘And I forgot to tell you – I have a new backing track for Tollie’s Christmas Tale; it’s a surprise and I think he’s going to love it.’
He begins to hum it for me, and I realise that’s one of the things I miss most when he’s not around. Music. The second main man in my life is mad, truly mad, but I wouldn’t change one single thing about him.
‘I love you, Captain Christmas.’
‘I love you, too, Santa’s number one elf.’
About the Author
Lucy Coleman is a #1 bestselling romance writer, whose recent novels include Snowflakes over Holly Cove. She also writes under the name Linn B. Halton. She won the 2013 UK Festival of Romance: Innovation in Romantic Fiction award and lives in the Welsh Valleys.
Find out more about Lucy by visiting her website at LucyColemanromance.com
Sign up for her newsletter here: LucyColemanNewsletter
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