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.

The Great Christmas Cook Off by Helen Buckley #Review SpotlightBook5


Here's a lovely festive read by Helen Buckley, The Great Christmas Cook Off. It can be read as a standalone but is part of her Spotlight series. It was published by Choc Lit on November 15th.

It’s the festive showdown to end all festive showdowns …

“Queen of Chocolate” Beatrice Wodehouse, known for her decadent desserts, is ready to go head to head with her social media nemesis, clean lean baking machine Charlie Simmonds, in the Great Christmas Cook Off TV show.

Beatrice is fed up of Charlie’s sanctimonious attitude and is ready to show him that food is there to be enjoyed. Surely she’ll blow his keto, low sugar, low-carb mince pies out of the water with her chocolatey creations?

Except filming for the Cook Off turns out to be anything but sugar, spice and all things nice when the contestants realise there’s a festive saboteur in their midst – leading to melted ice cream, trifle mishaps and private stories leaked to the press.

As the countdown to the final commences, suspicions run high and sparks are bound to fly – and not just from the flaming Christmas puddings!

Part of the Spotlight series but it can be read as a standalone story.

 My Thoughts

Beatrice and Charlie are a great pair of protagonists in this festive read. Both famous and feted cooks, they have opposite approaches to baking and food. Charlie is very much on the healthy eating, low fat side, with Beatrice opting for the indulgence of chocolate, cream and all things nice.  Both contestants in the reality series which reminds you of The Great British Bake Off, the professional bakers are all interesting characters in their own life. One by one they are eliminated. Unfortunately, as disasters befall eacj one, there are suspicions that there is a saboteur at large.

    Charlie and Beatrice's backstories are what makes this interesting. You understand why each has taken on the approach to food that they have and their families  have been influential in both their lives, but in different ways. This is a fun read, with plenty of chemistry and some humour alongside the growing romance. It is just right for a light, entertaining read, as others in this series have been.

In short: sugar and spice and all things nice.

About the Author


Ever since I was little I wanted to be a writer, to turn daydreams into books. I'm fascinated by fame, in love with Happy Ever Afters, and enthralled by slow-burn romances. I squeeze in time to write around looking after my two sons. Find out more about me on my website

You can read ny review of Strictly Christmas Spirit here.


You can follow Helen here:  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Instagram  

                                              |  Author Website


Book link:  Amazon UK  |  Amazon US

Thanks to Helen Buckley, Choc Lit and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for a copy of the book and a place on the tour. 

Check out the rest of the tour!



Popular Posts