|Notting Hill Press|
13 November 2014
Single mother and extremely undomestic goddess, Lottie, has five days to become the ultimate B&B hostess to save her beloved Aunt Kate’s livelihood.
When Aunt Kate ends up in the hospital, Lottie and her seven-year-old daughter are called to rural Wales to stand in at the B&B. Without the faintest idea how to run a hotel (she can barely run her own life), Lottie must impress the picky hotel reviewer and his dysfunctional family who are coming to stay over Christmas. Without the rating only he can bestow, Aunt Kate will lose her livelihood.
But will Danny, the local taxi driver who she hires to help her, really be Santa’s little helper, or the Grinch who stole Christmas?
A ramshackle B&B in rural Wales is the setting for this delightful Christmas read. Following a devastating accident to her aunt Kate, Lottie and her seven year old daughter Mabel, arrive in Wales, ostensibly to take over running their aunt’s guest house, however, they are dismayed to find that the B&B, far from being a rural retreat, turns out to be something from a hammer horror film. The faded elegance and shabby chic of this rural idyll and the way in which Lottie enlists the help of local taxi driver Danny to help her turn the business around, forms the basis of the story.
From the beginning I loved the story, the setting, and the characters, who made me, laugh out loud. It has a wonderful light hearted charm and whilst it’s a quick read, I read it in one sitting over the course of a rainy afternoon; it really helped to lighten my mood and provided great escapism.
So, if you want something to cheer you up on a cold wintery day – put the kettle on, grab a cup of tea, and a packet of chocolate hob nobs, and immerse yourself in The Reluctant Elf.
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My thanks to Notting Hill Press for my review copy of this book.