Karen Swan takes a horrible situation and brings us characters full of life and light in this story that feels similar to Eat, Pray, Love. I love ‘redo’ stories, where a character moves from everything that wasn’t working and tries to find their next path in life, and Swan does this with a fairly traumatic start for the heroine Cassie. Her ten year anniversary brings revelations: her best friend has been having an affair with her husband, and her child is his child. In a small and rural Scottish town, she really was the last to know – and that is just untenable. As she thinks back on her list of “coulda, shoulda, woulda” she decides to test out 3 cities as she searches to find her own new way of being.
Cassie has her time plotted out: visiting friends in New York, London and Paris, and armed with a list of “must do’s” for each city, she has a jumping off point to start her transformation and with some occasionally heavy-handed suggestions from her friends, she does find her own strength and a new love interest.
The women in this book that Cassie encounters, in fact Cassie herself, are strong, likable and supportive friends, realizing that their suggestions of ‘be the image’ doesn’t always work, and that Cassie may flounder occasionally, she will find the path that best works for her. Kelly, Anouk and Suzy all have lives that work for them, and while some may resonate more strongly with readers than others, each has a solid and satisfying life and good advice to offer Cassie.
Occasional inconsistencies in the prose, with some unexpected and rather sudden conclusions to chapters, and a very nebulous connection to Christmas as the book does cover three seasons, there were some real bonuses in Henry’s character: far more down to earth and comfortable in his interactions with Cassie, their connection was frustrating in the bumbling and miscommunication, but a few twists removed the predictable from the courtship and added much to the story as Cassie came alive with each new challenge.
Wrapping up neatly and happily, this story is fun to read and savor – and is a wonderful diversion for a day of downtime when all you want to do is travel through the eyes of another. Swan describes each city with descriptives that bring the area to life, and you can wander through the ‘places to see’ with Cassie, enjoying them almost as much as being there.
Title: Christmas at Tiffany's
Author: Karen Swan
Genre: Holiday Themed
Published by: William Morrow
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦Audible
In the wake of a heartbreaking betrayal, a young woman leaves the Scottish countryside to find her destiny in three of the most exciting cities in the world—New York, Paris, and London—in this funny and triumphant tale of fulfillment, friendship, and love
Ten years ago, a young and naïve Cassie married her first serious boyfriend, believing he would be with her forever. Now, her marriage is in tatters and Cassie has no career or home of her own. Though she feels betrayed and confused, Cassie isn’t giving up. She’s going to take control of her life. But first she has to find out where she belongs . . . and who she wants to be.
Over the course of one year, Cassie leaves her sheltered life in rural Scotland to stay with her best friends living in the most glamorous cities in the world: New York, Paris, and London. Exchanging comfort food and mousy hair for a low-carb diet and a gorgeous new look, Cassie tries each city on for size as she searches for the life she’s meant to have . . . and the man she’s meant to love.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher Via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.