Skip to main content


A Christmas Miracle in the Little Irish Village by Michelle Vernal #Review

  Michelle Vernal's A Christmas Miracle in the Little Irish Village was published on September 27th by Bookoutre . Ava Kelly loves returning to Emerald Bay for Christmas. Snowflakes fall on the green rolling hills and mulled wine fills The Shamrock Inn with the smell of winter spice. But this year, the Kelly family is hoping for a miracle… When twenty-four-year-old Ava Kelly and her adventurous twin Grace return home to The Shamrock Inn, their Ma’s favourite baubles bring back so many memories of Christmases past. They have always done everything together, even leaving their little Irish village for the excitement of London. But with the locket her handsome ex Shane gave her hanging just above her heart, Ava has just one wish this festive season… After a year stuck in a job she can’t stand and going on dreadful dates, Ava longs to be back with Shane. Curling up in front of the fire with him, the brooding fisherman everyone else sees melts away as his blue eyes meet hers.

More than Mistletoe by The Christmas Collective #Review #ShortStories

If you love dipping in and out of a short story anthology then this festive collection will be just up your street. More than Mistletoe was published on November 1st. 

Cosy up for Christmas with 12 very different tales of love with all the festive feels!

More than Mistletoe, the debut anthology from The Christmas Collective, is an eclectic and inclusive mix of stories, with swoon-worthy characters, second chances and happy endings.

Between the pages, you will discover classic romance, festive thrillers, LGBTQ+ love stories, hilarious romcoms and historical settings, these stories really do span the whole spectrum of festive fiction.

Featuring twelve up and coming new authors, this refreshing, diverse and romantic read, is a must-have read that will leave you reaching for your Christmas jumper, gingerbread cookies and a mug of hot chocolate!

 My Thoughts

With twelve writers all contributing to this anthology, you have a chance that no matter what your preference, there might be something here that you will warm to. An anthology of festive short stories, you can pick this up then put it down and really savour the experience. 

    In the second story, Christmas for Two by Marianne Calver,  there is a good mix of humour and poignancy and the two central characters are in their middle age, facing a Christmas post retirement and without their adult children on the day. Having grown apart somewhat, the strain begins to show. Nevertheless, there is genuine emotion between the characters. 

    Under the Tree by Cici Maxwell features characters from the other end of the age group, There is plenty of unrequited love and teenage angst. Interestingly, there is to be a follow up to the story, as described by the author which throws the outcome of this story into some doubt.

    My personal favourite story is Christmas at the Little Blu Bookshop by Sarah Shard. Who can resist the thought of a bookshop set around December? Michael's attempt to open his very own puts him at the heart of the village of Applewood in the Lake District. This is a story set in 1979 before social media and the internet. Letter writing was an important way of keeping in touch and Michael hankers after his childhood penfriend.  The author also flags up a follow up story, December for Dad, which takes the story on forty years to a sadder time but one in which letter writing is as important to the story.

    With some stories as prequels to follow up novels, there is quite a bit to whet the appetite. You will enjoy the range of styles. This is certainly a great stocking filler to have this Christmas.

In short: a festive mix


About the Authors


‘The Christmas Collective is a group of twelve romance authors who came together when shortlisted for a festive romance competition. Together they have created two Christmas Romance anthologies, More Than Mistletoe (2021) and The Mistletoe Mixtape (2022).

The Christmas Collective authors are spread far and wide, across the UK, Ireland, Spain and South Korea, however, one thing connects them despite the distance: a love of romance and Christmas.’

You can follow the Christmas Collective here: Website |  Facebook 

                                                        |  Twitter |  Instagram   |  TikTok

Book link: Amazon UK 

Thanks to The Christmas Collective and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for a copy of the book and a place on the tour. 



Popular Posts