Bella’s Christmas Bake Off

Author: Sue Watson

Date of Publication: 22nd October 2015

Genre: Fiction

Synopsis: Years after a feud split them apart, Amy and her now famous TV Chef friend Bella re-unite for the ultimate clash of baking titans!

Rating: 3/5

Festive Rating:Β πŸŽ… πŸŽ… πŸŽ… πŸŽ… πŸŽ… πŸŽ… πŸŽ…

This is the ninth 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!

Never have I read a Christmas themed booked with the word “Christmassy” used more often – this one blew the festive rating right through the roof! Sue Watson certainly wanted her audience to know that this is a dramatic interpretation of the Christmas edition of the Great British Bake Off (all those Mary Berry mentions!) and, surprisingly, Bella’s Christmas Bake Off works.

It’s more, for me, a story of friendship and family than a romance. Whilst that didn’t come as a surprise based on the synopsis, it did certainly come as a welcome relief. I’ve read a lot of Christmas themed romantic stories recently and it’s nice to have something a bit different. Don’t get me wrong – romance, love and sex play their parts. But at its heart this book is about Bella and Amy’s friendship and how exactly it went wrong – and how it can nowΒ be repaired.

I really liked the characters of Amy and Bella – in fact their tense sniping was my favourite part and I would have liked to have seen that develop further. I think Bella softens too quickly; leading to a lot of repetitive story telling which would have been more interesting if to two main characters were still at war with each other. I also wanted more baking – obviously this isn’t a cook book, but it felt like the baking was kept to a minimum in favour of drama – probably not a problem for most people but I love a good baking scene!

Overall this is a fun read, sweet and extremely “Christmassy”! You have to have Christmas Brownies with this (there’s a recipe in the back of the book if you’re stuck!).

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