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May 2019



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Christmas book the first: Christmas at the Vicarage, Rebecca Boxall

Whether book the first will be followed by book the second, third etc. remains to be seen. What usually happens at this time of year is that I have a little pile of books put aside for seasonal reading and then by the time Christmas arrives I’ve only read three of them and dipped into a few old favourites.

Doesn’t this book have a pretty cover? Slightly misleading, as is the title, because Christmas is the climax of the book, nothing like the whole. The story begins with Rosamunde returning home to a Devon vicarage for the first time in fifteen years. Obviously something has happened to keep her away for so long. We’re kept guessing about what it was but suspect it had to do with a man. Pleased to be back with her highly eccentric but loveable vicar father (he drinks an awful lot!) and housekeeper Mrs G., Rosamunde finds that, as so often in small villages in fiction, many of her old friends and acquaintances are still around and (mostly) pleased to see her.

The story then alternates between episodes from the past and the present until Rosamunde’s history is almost complete. She’s now forty four and as Christmas approaches you wonder who on earth is going to provide the love interest which will surely be there for the happy-ever-after ending. Happily it’s a surprise for everyone.

Not a book to set the world afire but well written, with plenty of interesting characters, details of village life and lots of Christmassy events, cooking and eating. I read this courtesy of NetGalley and enjoyed it.


Yes, the cover is pretty, who could resist a lovely snowy thatch? It does sound a really nice book, seasonal as well :)
What a lovely userpic!

It's a first novel, so good luck, Ms Boxall.
It is mentioned in the book that a thatched vicarage is pretty unusual!
I love planning my Christmas reading even if I never get through it all. I too succumb to the lure of old favourites.
Out come The Tailor of Gloucester and Susan Pulls the Strings again?