Author: Jenny Colgan
Date of Publication: 7th November 2013
Synopsis: A sequel to Rosie Hopkins’ Sweetshop of Dreams; Christmas arrives and Rosie questions whether Lipton is a place where she can build a life, after a tragedy strikes and strife occurs between her and her boyfriend, Stephen.
Festive Rating: 🎅🎅🎅
This is the fifth in my #12daysofChristmas read-a-thon! Each day I will post a review of a Christmas / Winter related book. Hopefully this will give you some Xmas-Inspo and give your holiday reading a boost!
I read the Rosie Hopkins’ Sweetshop of Dream about a year or so ago, in the mood for some syrupy small town romantic storytelling. In the original, Jenny Colgan delivered. However for me the sequel left much to be desired.
I felt like Rosie’s character got stuck here; her obsession with marrying Stephen (who she has been with for a mere year) was dull in its repetitiveness. I also was surprised by the characterization of Stephen – prickly in a dry and humorous way in the original, he seemed like a completely different man in this festive sequel. Some of this change could be put to the positive changes in his personal life (aka his relationship with Rosie) – however I occasionally missed his dark humour.
I would have preferred this sequel to focus on Lilian, to be honest, as I felt her story was far more interesting and worthy of an entire book and Rosie’s own. However I can’t fault Colgan for her Christmas vibe – there was snow, carol singing and lots of sweets! Drama was also well written – a particularly dark event occurs about a third of the way through, giving Colgan the chance to stretch her writing muscles and portray something more than just the same romantic comedy tropes which were exhausted within the first few chapters.
This is definitely a mulled wine kind of read – if you drink a couple of glasses any flaws will be forgiven in favour of embracing the Christmas spirit!