Mutts and Mistletoe
Thirty-one-year-old Charlie isn't in the mood for Christmas cheer...Her boyfriend has left her for his personal trainer, her mother has absconded with her latest husband for the holidays, and--adding insult to (literal) injury--her London apartment has just been destroyed by a gas leak. Single, mildly concussed and temporarily homeless, Charlie realizes there's only one place to go: Cozy Canine Cottages, where she'll spend the season looking after her cousin Jez's doggy day care center. And if she's not exactly a dog person, well, no one has to know...But her plans for a quiet Christmas in a quaint country village are quickly dashed. Peggy the pregnant beagle and Malcolm the anxious Great Dane seem determined to keep her up all night. A strange man has been casing her cousin's house. And where is Cal, the unbearably patronizing but disturbingly handsome local vet, when she needs him?As the days tick down to Christmas, Charlie's life has never felt so out of control--but with some help from her new four-legged friends, she just might learn a thing or two about living in the moment, embracing the unexpected and opening herself up to love...

Mutts and Mistletoe Details

TitleMutts and Mistletoe
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 9th, 2018
PublisherG.P. Putnam's Sons
ISBN-139780525539193
Rating
GenreHoliday, Christmas, Romance, Womens Fiction, Chick Lit, Animals, Dogs, Fiction, Contemporary

Mutts and Mistletoe Review

  • Mackey
    January 1, 1970
    If you are a dog lover, then Mutts and Mistletoe is must read book for you! Even if you aren't a dog lover, you will enjoy this delightful holiday book!The holidays - which for me begin on October 1 - are the only time of the year that I actually read and enjoy cozy mysteries and romance books. I think it has something to do with being raised on holiday classics which morphed into Hallmark Holiday movies. I like feeling nostalgic and magical and in love this time of year. If given the opportunit If you are a dog lover, then Mutts and Mistletoe is must read book for you! Even if you aren't a dog lover, you will enjoy this delightful holiday book!The holidays - which for me begin on October 1 - are the only time of the year that I actually read and enjoy cozy mysteries and romance books. I think it has something to do with being raised on holiday classics which morphed into Hallmark Holiday movies. I like feeling nostalgic and magical and in love this time of year. If given the opportunity to read a fun holiday story, I will jump at the chance. Mutts and Mistletoe was such an opportunity! Charlie's life has hit the rocks - her boyfriend just ran off with his trainer, her mother has fled to Australia with her new husband and, in a neighbor's freak explosion, her apartment ceiling caved in on her leaving her injured and homeless just in time for the holidays. She reluctantly agrees to spend time recuperating at her cousin's home in the middle of nowhere where her cousin runs an upscale doggy day-care. Charlie is not a dog fan and is even less of a fan of the country veterinarian with whom she gets off on the wrong foot. When Charlie's cousin makes the sudden decision to travel to the Arctic Circle to be with her online lover, Charlie is left in charge of the pooches, including her cousin's very pregnant, very spoiled pet, Peggy. Mayhem ensues as Charlie learns about dogs, their owners. There is a burglary gone wrong, holiday pet races that include a very well trained reindeer and a duck and so much more leading up the big event - Christmas Day. The beginning of the book was a close deal breaker for me. I'm not sure what it was about the first chapter or so, but I disliked Charlie and her lifestyle so immensely that I, quite nearly, stopped reading the book. However, once the dogs were introduced into the story, it all turned around. It is very obvious that the author, Natalie Cox, loves dogs and understands their non-verbal communication perfectly. The detail of their personalities, quirks, beauty and relationships was so spot on that I found myself laughing hysterically, crying and nodding my head in agreement throughout. Poor Peggy, the pregnant pooch, was the star of the book without a doubt! Just as they transformed Charlie into a completely different person, they won over my heart and mind regarding the book. By the end, it became one of my very favorite holiday reads of this season. I highly recommend Mutts and Mistletoes to all of those who have furbabies of their own, to those who love holiday tales and readers who enjoy light romance stories. This one is a winner! Thank you to #Edelweiss, #PenguinRandomHouse and Natalie Cox for the opportunity to read this heart-warming tale which now is on sale at your favorite retailer. 
    more
  • Mackenzie Lane
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 ✨So stinkin' cozy & cute. Will elaborate more after I get some sleep!{Okay, I've gotten enough sleep!}Our main character, Charlie, is not the biggest fan of dogs or Christmas, so me - being a crazy fan of both - and her didn't get along at first. I get that it was all a part of her character arc, but not liking dogs or Christmas?? Just saying, in real life, we would probably not be close friends. I freaking loved Cozy Canine Cottages, the main setting of the book. It was a luxury boardin 3.5 ✨So stinkin' cozy & cute. Will elaborate more after I get some sleep!{Okay, I've gotten enough sleep!}Our main character, Charlie, is not the biggest fan of dogs or Christmas, so me - being a crazy fan of both - and her didn't get along at first. I get that it was all a part of her character arc, but not liking dogs or Christmas?? Just saying, in real life, we would probably not be close friends. I freaking loved Cozy Canine Cottages, the main setting of the book. It was a luxury boarding house for dogs in Devon (UK) that was so charming & quaint! There were lovely descriptions of the snow-covered hillside, the local village bedecked in Christmas decor, and winding country lanes. It definitely helped put me in more of a holiday mood than I already was :)Now, the romance on the other hand, was weird & off? Like, they (Charlie & Cal) bickered and mocked each other, sometimes bordering on flirting, and then all of a sudden (without ever addressing a mutual attraction!) they were making out. Like, what?? And the addition of Hugo's character was odd, too, but I loved Malcolm, so it kind of worked out :POverall, I'd recommend it for a good read to get you in the holiday spirit & if you absolutely love dogs! The title here is very apt for what you get out of this book & I did really like it.
    more
  • Rachel Gilbey
    January 1, 1970
    Dogs... checkChristmas... checkTwo gorgeous men... check Hilarious situations... check Main character who is not keen on Christmas or Dogs but needs to learn to embrace both.... check I mean what more could you ask for from a Christmas book. This was completely delightful. There were laugh out loud moments, absolutely adorable moment and a rather unusually scary happening right at the beginning too. A series of unfortunate circumstances leave Charlie temporarily homeless, single and having to ta Dogs... checkChristmas... checkTwo gorgeous men... check Hilarious situations... check Main character who is not keen on Christmas or Dogs but needs to learn to embrace both.... check I mean what more could you ask for from a Christmas book. This was completely delightful. There were laugh out loud moments, absolutely adorable moment and a rather unusually scary happening right at the beginning too. A series of unfortunate circumstances leave Charlie temporarily homeless, single and having to take time off work, she ends up in Devon with her cousin Jez. Jez though runs Canine Cottages where owners can leave their beloved dogs safely, while they head off on holiday. However Charlie isn't really keen on dogs at all. So when Jez then announces she is spending Christmas abroad and needs Charlie to look after the place you know things are going to get interesting. Despite being a main character who isn't too keen with dogs she is remarkably easy to like, she is big hearted and a bit of a soft touch. Thankfully the local vet keeps popping in to make sure she doesn't do anything too silly with the dogs. And what fabulous animals they are, from the twins who live outside and love nothing more than to pull a suky, to Peggy who is heavily pregnant, Malcolm the huge Great Dane, Jed the show dog, Slab who is just really old but sweet they all have such distinct personalities and all utterly gorgeous. Easily this is a book for the Christmas and animal lovers amongst you, there is plenty of plot to keep you interested and a few surprises in store too. It is a lovely heartwarming read, and although it may be the first book I've read from this author, I am sure it won't be my last either. Thank you to Netgalley and Orion for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
    more
  • Martina
    January 1, 1970
    Heerlijk! Als hondenliefhebber ging ik vooral voor de cover van het boek, daarnaast heb ik rond deze tijd altijd zin in makkelijke verhalen, dus bingo😃. Het verhaal; Charlie gaat rond kerst naar haar nicht Jez, die een hondenhotel runt. Natuurlijk houdt Charlie helemaal niet van honden en uiteraard is het slot van het liedje dat ze er toch helemaal op haar plaats is. Zin in een leuke chicklit, dan is dit echt den aanrader
    more
  • Kirsten
    January 1, 1970
    This book is laugh out loud funny!! I highly recommend it for rainy days and Mondays.Now, I am a sucker for any book with a dog on the cover, but this is especially up my alley! British, cozy, Christmasy, and full of dogs -- it ticks all my boxes!!
  • Nicola Clough
    January 1, 1970
    I had not heard to much about this author and certainly never read any of her books before but the cover and description sounded really good and didn't let me down at all. Full of laughs and romance and plenty about dogs and Christmas and shows how things can change in your life for the better. I have never laughed as much as when reading this book just so funny a very fantastic read with great countryside and loveable vets and plenty of dogs. Charlie hates Christmas and this year sets to be the I had not heard to much about this author and certainly never read any of her books before but the cover and description sounded really good and didn't let me down at all. Full of laughs and romance and plenty about dogs and Christmas and shows how things can change in your life for the better. I have never laughed as much as when reading this book just so funny a very fantastic read with great countryside and loveable vets and plenty of dogs. Charlie hates Christmas and this year sets to be the worst as her boyfriend has left her and then her flat is out of bounds as it's had a gas leak and can't go near and she's in hospital with concussion. Her mother speak with her and says her cousin is on her way to collect her and she will spend some time with Jez in Devon. Once she gets there she realises her cousin is going away and she wants Charlie to look after the dogs in the day care she runs. So with a pregnant and deaf dog about over Christmas how will she cope and when she notices a person casing the place where is the beautiful vet when you want him. Will she enjoy Christmas in the end or not and will she find romance or will it be a total disaster. If you love dogs and want a laugh this is the perfect book for you.
    more
  • Trish at Between My Lines
    January 1, 1970
    Jam packed with humour, an actual pack of loveable dogs, and a cute romance to root for. And lots of Christmas sparkle and cheer. What more could you want from a feel good Christmas book. It ticked everything on my list.
  • Romancebooksandmore
    January 1, 1970
    Mutts and Mistletoe by Natalie Cox 4.5 stars I won this book in a good reads give away for a fair and honest review. A book about a woman who loses her boyfriend and then her apartment is destroyed so she has no place to go except to her cousin’s, a cousin who happens to own a dog Kennel. Only problem. Charlie hates Dogs. Oh well it’s off to the country side to spend Christmas meet new people and maybe fall in love with man and dog. This is a good book full of cute dogs, a little romance some mi Mutts and Mistletoe by Natalie Cox 4.5 stars I won this book in a good reads give away for a fair and honest review. A book about a woman who loses her boyfriend and then her apartment is destroyed so she has no place to go except to her cousin’s, a cousin who happens to own a dog Kennel. Only problem. Charlie hates Dogs. Oh well it’s off to the country side to spend Christmas meet new people and maybe fall in love with man and dog. This is a good book full of cute dogs, a little romance some misunderstanding and a healthy dose of laughter. I took half a star off because the ending was too open ended for me. There were to many lingering questions about the characters and I felt that many of the back stories could have been flushed out better. Especially Cals. Cal is her love interest kind of nothing really happens until the last twenty or so pages and it’s nothing steamy that’s for sure. But if you’re looking for a nice Christmas read to curl up with and get through easily this is a good book for you. There is also a slight LGBTQ+ storyline running in the back ground. Book comes out October 9th.
    more
  • Irena
    January 1, 1970
    If you’re looking for a good Christmas comedy, look no further!Not Just for Christmas (or Mutts and Mistletoe, as it was previously published under that name) has everything you need this season in your festive chick lit: the most likeable protagonist you could wish for, many cute dogs, pups, hot guys, snow, food and lots and lots of humour.Still, even though it’s funny and entertaining, it does not go overboard and everything in this novel, every element, is dosed just right.The story follows C If you’re looking for a good Christmas comedy, look no further!Not Just for Christmas (or Mutts and Mistletoe, as it was previously published under that name) has everything you need this season in your festive chick lit: the most likeable protagonist you could wish for, many cute dogs, pups, hot guys, snow, food and lots and lots of humour.Still, even though it’s funny and entertaining, it does not go overboard and everything in this novel, every element, is dosed just right.The story follows Charlie, who after the accident that caught her apartment, stays at her cousin’s place.Her cousin runs hotel for dogs, and after she goes on a trip to meet the love of her life, Charlie stays to run the place over Christmas.Charlie is not a dog person, but day by day she discovers the beauty of mutts and one’s relationship with them.Not Just for Christmas was lovely, warm story that put a smile on my face so many times.It is a feel good story that will make readers’ lives better, I honestly believe that.The writing style is stunning, and it reminds me of Sophie Kinsella’s, but it is still different. In my language, I would call it “pitko” which means that you drink the words, that’s how it easy is to read.This book has 352 pages and it felt like it had only 200 pages, that’s how fast I read it (and I am a slow reader).I liked all the characters. Even our villain was sympathetic.Still, my favorite was Malcolm, a deaf Dane who certainly gave this book a heart.I don’t say this often in my reviews, but I wouldn’t change anything in this novel.It was perfect just as it was, and I am so grateful I had a chance to read it.I can already see it will be the one book I’ll recommend to everyone around me.If you’re looking for a good Christmas comedy, I highly, highly recommend you Not Just for Christmas (or Mutts and Mistletoe) because trust me, it will put a smile on your face and warm your heart, just like it did my.
    more
  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    4 Stars
  • Barb (Boxermommyreads)
    January 1, 1970
    So ever since I saw this cover, I've been dreaming of a nice quiet weekend snuggled in a furry blankets with my pups snuggling by my side. I was thrilled to get an ARC and have saved it for the Christmas season. In fact, it was the perfect fit for a recent readathon. But somehow, this book left me feeling a little flat. Now I will admit that the last 30% or so saved it for me because in the beginning, I feared it was not going to live up to my anticipation. So Charlie lives in London and was re So ever since I saw this cover, I've been dreaming of a nice quiet weekend snuggled in a furry blankets with my pups snuggling by my side. I was thrilled to get an ARC and have saved it for the Christmas season. In fact, it was the perfect fit for a recent readathon. But somehow, this book left me feeling a little flat. Now I will admit that the last 30% or so saved it for me because in the beginning, I feared it was not going to live up to my anticipation. So Charlie lives in London and was recently dumped by her boyfriend. As Christmas nears, a gas explosion in her apartment building almost impales her she ends up needing a place to stay. Her mother, who loves to meddle, arranges for Charlie to spend the holiday with her cousin Jez, who lives in the country and runs Cozy Canine Cottages. However, Charlie is not a dog person. Needless to say, Charlie eventually goes and stays with Jez, who is actually a much more likable person that Charlie. While there, she meets the local vet, who she calls Bovine Cal, because he specializes in, yep, you guessed it, cows. Cal and Charlie do not hit it off and things become even more complicated when Jez decides to take off for the North Pole to rendezvous with an on-line girlfriend, leaving Charlie in charge of the dogs who are boarding there for Christmas. Even Cal questions why Jez would do such a thing.So despite not liking dogs, Charlie ends up taking in even more boarders as the holidays draw closer and before you know it, she has a full house - literally, because the heat in the cottages go out. Add in a small mystery, a hunk named Hugo who is engaged to the local snob, and alpacas and you have "Mutts and Mistletoe."Like I said, in my opinion, the last part totally saved the novel. However, I did have a couple of issues that I just can't get over. First of all, Charlie isn't a dog person. Strike one. Secondly, her cousin leaves her in charge of the dogs and the kennel to traipse to the North Pole - not a smart business decision. And last but not least, see the adorable dogs on the cover? The ones who made me fall in love with this book before I even started? Well, they are even in the book. Don't get me wrong, there are some adorable dogs. We have a deaf Great Dane named Malcolm, a pregnant beagle (why did you leave Charlie with your personal pregnant beagle Jez?), two Alaskan Malamutes, an elderly dog who they call Slab because he doesn't move much, and an Irish Setter. See, lots to chose from so why aren't any of THEM on the cover? I have since discovered several foreign editions and both covers are more indicative of the book.So overall I did enjoy this book, but not as much as I had hoped. There are some great characters in the little country town whose oddness only make them that much more endearing. The dogs are fun and adorable and Charlie does exhibit some character growth which is good, because she needed it. So even though I could easily give this a 3/5, it's probably more like a 3.5 so for Goodreads sake I'll add up. After all, it's still an adorable cover.I received this book from the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
    more
  • Pauline Jansen
    January 1, 1970
    Wat een heerlijk boek. Een roman met liefde, dilemma's, honden en humor, heel veel fijne humor. Heb je dit boek nog niet gelezen? Ooh zeker doen! Je gaat heerlijk het jaar uit! ♥ Wat een heerlijk boek. Een roman met liefde, dilemma's, honden en humor, heel veel fijne humor. Heb je dit boek nog niet gelezen? Ooh zeker doen! Je gaat heerlijk het jaar uit! ♥️
    more
  • Natalie
    January 1, 1970
    I was looking for a fun Christmassy read and this was a bit cute, but I had a huge problem overall with the main character. First of all, I just didn't get her. She seems super desperate for a guy and is talking about prospects with Hugo, but she doesn't even know him and stuff. Then the romance was super confusing cause it seemed that they hated each other and suddenly they like each other, but she didn't even know who his mom is or anything about him other than he was good looking and had nice I was looking for a fun Christmassy read and this was a bit cute, but I had a huge problem overall with the main character. First of all, I just didn't get her. She seems super desperate for a guy and is talking about prospects with Hugo, but she doesn't even know him and stuff. Then the romance was super confusing cause it seemed that they hated each other and suddenly they like each other, but she didn't even know who his mom is or anything about him other than he was good looking and had nice forearms. Anyways I find that she was very shallow and unlikable for a main character.The only redeeming part was the plot with the dognapping though I totally saw that Camilla thing coming I didn't expect her to be the one to actually recover Judd. I don't know, just lots of things didn't necessary feel right to me.
    more
  • Kathleen Gray
    January 1, 1970
    A delightful read! When Charlie's ceiling caves in, leaving her injured and temporarily injured, she decamps to her cousin Jez's place in Devon. It's Christmas and when Jez's love- who she's only communicated with via computer- invites her to the Arctic Circle, Jez leaves Charlie, who doesn't love dogs, in charge of her dog sitting business. There's Cal, a hot veterinarian and Hugo, a good looking lovelorn visitor to a neighbor to keep track of, as well as some other delightful people in the vil A delightful read! When Charlie's ceiling caves in, leaving her injured and temporarily injured, she decamps to her cousin Jez's place in Devon. It's Christmas and when Jez's love- who she's only communicated with via computer- invites her to the Arctic Circle, Jez leaves Charlie, who doesn't love dogs, in charge of her dog sitting business. There's Cal, a hot veterinarian and Hugo, a good looking lovelorn visitor to a neighbor to keep track of, as well as some other delightful people in the village. Best of all, though are the dogs and how Charlie begins to relate to them. It's funny, the dialogue is good, and all in all, it's a pleasure. Thanks to Edelweiss for the ARC. Try this one for a good smile.
    more
  • Anne - Books of My Heart
    January 1, 1970
    This review was originally posted on Books of My HeartReview copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. 3.5 hearts I requested Mutts and Mistletoe for the HoHoHoRAT without really knowing much and assuming it was a holiday romance with dogs. Well that's the jist of it, I guess.Charlie, the main character, and our view into the world is rather young and shallow. I didn't like her at the beginning but I will say she grew during the st This review was originally posted on Books of My HeartReview copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. 3.5 hearts I requested Mutts and Mistletoe for the HoHoHoRAT without really knowing much and assuming it was a holiday romance with dogs. Well that's the jist of it, I guess.Charlie, the main character, and our view into the world is rather young and shallow. I didn't like her at the beginning but I will say she grew during the story.  After an accident, she ends up at her cousin Jez's doggy kennel country house.  It is utterly ridiculous for her to be left caring for the dogs when Jez leaves, especially with Peggy ready to have puppies.  She had a few TSTL moments which didn't endear me, either. The most unbelievable was how many people could just change their job or living situations at a moment's notice; it's hard to do without some wealth or savings.The small town, Jez, the vet and the dog owners make a colorful cast of characters. I love the British setting and wordings.  Charlie does grow and learn during her stay.  Her courage was uplifting.  She has a few mishaps which luckily don't result in serious problems.  Even though she didn't like dogs to start, how could she not be won over after her time with them?  Narration: I had just listened to an audio at 1.5x but I couldn't manage it with this one. There is a definite British accent which I needed to slow to my usual 1.25x to grasp everything. It was appropriate with the English country setting and very pleasant to hear. The voices of the male characters are comfortable and enjoyable. Most of the narration is Charlie's stream of consciousness which sounded perfect to me.Listen to a clip:   HERE#HoHoHoRAT 11 
    more
  • Ebella
    January 1, 1970
    Mooie quote: "Volgens Kant moeten we er eerst voor zorgen dat we zelf het geluk waard zijn.” Mijn mening: Een onverwachte kerst van Natalie Cox is niet het typische kerst feel good boek, maar dat maakt het niet minder fijn om te lezen. Juist omdat het geen standaard boek is, heb ik er erg van genoten. Charlie komt in verschillende onhandige situaties terecht, waar je steeds weer om moet lachen. Ze is ook heel eigenwijs en komt niet altijd even vriendelijk over. Dat maakt van het boek meteen geen Mooie quote: "Volgens Kant moeten we er eerst voor zorgen dat we zelf het geluk waard zijn.” Mijn mening: Een onverwachte kerst van Natalie Cox is niet het typische kerst feel good boek, maar dat maakt het niet minder fijn om te lezen. Juist omdat het geen standaard boek is, heb ik er erg van genoten. Charlie komt in verschillende onhandige situaties terecht, waar je steeds weer om moet lachen. Ze is ook heel eigenwijs en komt niet altijd even vriendelijk over. Dat maakt van het boek meteen geen Hallmark kerstfilm verhaal. De personages zijn wat stugger en de liefde springt niet van de pagina’s af. Misschien vind je dit storend. Ik vond het zelf eigenlijk wel een keer prettig. Mensen maken er een rotzooi van en zijn niet allemaal extrovert en spontaan. Ook het leven loopt niet altijd zo uitvergroot. Want uiteindelijk is dat dus ook helemaal niet nodig, zowel voor het verhaal als voor de personages. Je kunt merken dat de schrijfster al een aantal boeken op haar naam heeft staan. Het verhaal staat, er zitten verschillende plotwendingen in, de karakters zijn uitgewerkt en loopt heel soepel. Daardoor leest het boek heerlijk weg. Je moet alleen wel van honden houden, of over honden willen lezen. Want in Een onverwachte kerst spelen de honden de hoofdrol. 8 stars: Een onverwachte kerst van Natalie Cox is een heerlijk wegleesboek. Dit kan prima voor de openhaard, voor de kerstboom, op de bank terwijl het regent. Het is een ideaal boek om je mee op te warmen!
    more
  • Hannah (FreeInFiction)
    January 1, 1970
    This book was full of dogs, romance, and the holidays, but I loved that the romance wasn’t just shoved in our faces immediately and it was more about Charlie coming to love dogs and deal with all the crazy things that were happening. There were some remarks that I don’t really know how to feel about necessarily, but every time I sat down to read this book, it went by so quickly!
    more
  • Kwante in Wonderland
    January 1, 1970
    Recensie volgt op mijn blog
  • Gretchen
    January 1, 1970
    Let it be known that I love Christmas stories, the Christmas season, all things Christmas, and animals too. However, Mutts and Mistletoe left me in a bah humbug mood. The only thing remotely interesting besides the London/British vocabulary was the last mini-mystery thrown in at the end.I found Charlie,the protagonist, to be a shallow character who would not be on my top ten friend list.The author seemed to have a check list that she diligently checked off: casual sex, LBGTQ, environment, serial Let it be known that I love Christmas stories, the Christmas season, all things Christmas, and animals too. However, Mutts and Mistletoe left me in a bah humbug mood. The only thing remotely interesting besides the London/British vocabulary was the last mini-mystery thrown in at the end.I found Charlie,the protagonist, to be a shallow character who would not be on my top ten friend list.The author seemed to have a check list that she diligently checked off: casual sex, LBGTQ, environment, serial marriages, a touch of mystery. I forced myself to read till the end of the book.I received this through a goodreads giveaway.
    more
  • Amanda
    January 1, 1970
    Every so often, I come across an author and book that has me chuckling away to myself from the moment I begin reading until the moment I finish the book. ‘Not Just For Christmas’ is just such a book. I absolutely adored reading it but more about that in a bit.I took to Charlie from the moment I first met her even if I occasionally felt like slapping her with a wet fish every once in a while. I began to wonder how many black cats she had run over because to say that she is having one hell of a sp Every so often, I come across an author and book that has me chuckling away to myself from the moment I begin reading until the moment I finish the book. ‘Not Just For Christmas’ is just such a book. I absolutely adored reading it but more about that in a bit.I took to Charlie from the moment I first met her even if I occasionally felt like slapping her with a wet fish every once in a while. I began to wonder how many black cats she had run over because to say that she is having one hell of a spell of bad luck is a vast understatement. In a short space of time, she loses her boyfriend, who has done a runner with his personal trainer, she loses her flat, which just happens to blow up and she ends up needing to go to hospital as a result of said explosion. No wonder the poor lass needs to get away from it all. Her very organised and bossy mother fixes it for her to go and recuperate at her cousin’s home in Devon. That should be straightforward but there is a significant problem. Charlie’s cousin runs a hotel for very pampered pooches and Charlie does not like dogs, in fact she can’t stand them. (Having two loopy Labradors myself I can’t understand somebody who doesn’t like dogs but that’s a debate for another time). I had a feeling that by the end of the book Charlie wouldn’t hate dogs but that she would end up quite liking them.I found it extremely easy to get into this book and to take to the character of Charlie. The author’s writing style is such that she grabs your attention from the start and keeps your attention until the moment the book ends. I soon became addicted to reading this book and I couldn’t bear to put the book down. I binge read the book over the space of a day and I found any excuse I could not to put the book down or to avoid having to leave the house. It seemed to take me no time at all to get through the book and as I was enjoying the book so much I didn’t realise just how quickly those pages were turning. I would try to ration how much I read because I didn’t want to finish the book too early but that idea soon went out of the window because the story was just too darn funny, addictive and well written to put to one side.Oh my goodness me, as I alluded to at the beginning of this review, this book had me chuckling away all the way through. One particular scene that sticks in my mind is when Charlie has a go on the treadmill/ hamster wheel for dogs. I could just imagine her going round faster and faster before ending up in a heap. Having two Labradors myself, I know just what can happen when dogs get it into their heads that they need to misbehave or be mischievous or what mishaps end up happening to their owners. I picked this book up at an ideal time for me. I was fed up, in a bit of a reading slump and I felt in need of some cheering up. ‘Not Just For Christmas’ ticked all those boxes and then some.In short, I adored this festive and funny tale about a woman rebuilding her life and of course I loved the fact that dogs were also central to the story. I would definitely recommend this book to other readers and those readers that like dogs will especially enjoy it. I can’t wait to read what Natalie comes up with next. Here’s hoping that we don’t have too long to wait. The score on the Ginger Book Geek board is a very well deserved 5* out of 5* but I would have awarded it more stars if I could have. I can’t recommend it highly enough.
    more
  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    It was a funny story. Charlie hates Christmas and specially this year. She has lost her live-in Boyfriend and the ceiling in her flat falls down on her putting her in hospital. When her Mum finds out about all of this, she gets a hold of Charlie's Cousin who runs a B&B for dogs. Jez comes to London to fetch Charlie and brings her to the country to heal and she asks her to take care of the B&B over the Christmas holiday so she can visit her lover in Iceland. Charlie is not a dog lover, bu It was a funny story. Charlie hates Christmas and specially this year. She has lost her live-in Boyfriend and the ceiling in her flat falls down on her putting her in hospital. When her Mum finds out about all of this, she gets a hold of Charlie's Cousin who runs a B&B for dogs. Jez comes to London to fetch Charlie and brings her to the country to heal and she asks her to take care of the B&B over the Christmas holiday so she can visit her lover in Iceland. Charlie is not a dog lover, but says OK.There is a nice looking Vet named Cal that takes care of Jez's animals, who starts looking good to Charlie.Cal is not looking for a relationship because he just got out of one. But he invites Charlie to dinner on Christmas and starts to notice her.The book has a lot of ups and downs and to boot, it has another man interested in Charlie. Someone who is boarding his dog with Charlie.The story kept me interested and it does have a surprising ending that everyone should read. Well organized and interesting to the end.I will recommend it to my friends and family.
    more
  • Linda Kwakernaat (Linda Linea Recta)
    January 1, 1970
    Mijn volledige recensie is terug te vinden op:https://www.linda-linea-recta.nl/een-...Het is een heerlijk spontaan lopend verhaal van een gekke meid met zotte acties. Meerdere keren heb ik om hilarische situaties zitten lachen. Wat mij betreft heeft het boek zijn doel dan bereikt. Voeg daar de kerst aan toe en klaar is een heel leuk verhaal.Nu het december is, is dit haast verplichte leesvoer. Een onverwachte kerst is een kant en klaar scenario voor een kerstfilm die we volgend jaar misschien we Mijn volledige recensie is terug te vinden op:https://www.linda-linea-recta.nl/een-...Het is een heerlijk spontaan lopend verhaal van een gekke meid met zotte acties. Meerdere keren heb ik om hilarische situaties zitten lachen. Wat mij betreft heeft het boek zijn doel dan bereikt. Voeg daar de kerst aan toe en klaar is een heel leuk verhaal.Nu het december is, is dit haast verplichte leesvoer. Een onverwachte kerst is een kant en klaar scenario voor een kerstfilm die we volgend jaar misschien wel op Netflix kunnen bekijken. Een absolute aanader! Genoten heb ik van het verhaal. Het heeft alles wat een feelgood roman moet hebben en meer.Bekentenis: ik ben ik mijn bed uitgeglipt om het boek uit te lezen! De spontane manier van schrijven van Nathalie Cox (pseudoniem van de Britse schrijfster Betsy Tobin) is een genot om te lezen.
    more
  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Charlie winds up at her cousin m’s dog kennel after an accident at her home. Her cousin offers to take care of her but quickly leaves Charlie behind by herself.Charlie isn’t a dog person, so she begrudgingly agrees to watch the dogs while her cousin is away.It’s partially motivated by money. And sometimes I didn’t like Charlie much in the beginning of the book for that reason. She agreed to an amount her cousin would pay her to watch the dogs, which included giving one of the dogs suppositories. Charlie winds up at her cousin m’s dog kennel after an accident at her home. Her cousin offers to take care of her but quickly leaves Charlie behind by herself.Charlie isn’t a dog person, so she begrudgingly agrees to watch the dogs while her cousin is away.It’s partially motivated by money. And sometimes I didn’t like Charlie much in the beginning of the book for that reason. She agreed to an amount her cousin would pay her to watch the dogs, which included giving one of the dogs suppositories. Of course no one would want to do that. But she told her cousin she would and then tried to pawn it off on a friendly neighbor, only after not doing it herself.So, I can’t help it, I know Charlie is written as someone who doesn’t like dogs...and I know she’s basically stuck caring for them...but she shouldn’t have told her cousin she would give the dog medicine if she wasn’t going to do it.All right...moving on...Gradually Charlie begins to take better care of the dogs and to start liking them too.She also finds herself in a bit of a love triangle between one of the dog’s owners and the local vet.I thought this was a nice light read. It’s definitely what I had in mind when I picked it up.The animals are adorable and the setting is cute too.Of course it’s a bonus that it’s set at Christmastime.A sweet read during the holidays, or any other time.I won a this book through a Goodreads giveaway. Thanks!
    more
  • Marsha De Blieck
    January 1, 1970
    Een leuk boek over Charlie die in London woont maar door een gaslek in haar appartement bij haar nicht Jez op het platteland in Devon terecht komt. Haar nicht runt een hondenhotel en Charlie gaat haar hierbij helpen. Een boek met humor, liefde en ook een aantal spannende wendingen in het verhaal. Als hondenliefhebber moet je dit boek gelezen hebben ;-)
    more
  • Judith
    January 1, 1970
    'Een onverwachte kerst' van Natalie Cox heeft mij positief verrast. Het is namelijk geen standaard kerstverhaaltje. Vergeet namelijk even romantisch zoenen onder de misteltoe en de cadeautjes onder de boom, maar denk aan veel sneeuw, mooie honden en personages om in je hart te sluiten. Echt een boek om even niet bij na te denken en gewoon van te genieten. Dan heb je hem door de luchtige schrijfstijl ook snel uit.
    more
  • Lesley
    January 1, 1970
    Cute story for this time of year-Reminds me of something I would watch on the Hallmark channel.
  • Juul Van den berg
    January 1, 1970
    Zie voor de recensie mijn blog: https://juulsboekwinkeltje.wordpress....
  • Inge van weegen
    January 1, 1970
    Super zoet boek, lekker voorspelbaar maar heerlijk om op een regenachtige zondag in weg te duiken.
  • J
    January 1, 1970
    A fun, enjoyable read. I loved the setting - mostly a country kitchen - and the characters. - mostly dogs. Made me laugh. If I could, I’d have given it 3.5 stars.
  • Sarina
    January 1, 1970
    Lees mijn volledige recensie hier: https://livethebooklife.wordpress.com...
Write a review