A Winters Dream by Sophie Clare

Thank you to Myrto Kalavrezou at Hodder and Stoughton for inviting me to join the blog tour for the new book by Sophie Claire, being published today. This is the third book I’ve read by Sophie Claire. I enjoyed reading The Christmas Holiday last year, the book that introduced Evie, who employs Liberty, at the Button Hole in Willowbrook. More recently I read and enjoyed A Forget-Me-Not Summer, the book that introduced Luc and Natasha, who also feature in this story (review at https://mentoringmumof2bookreviews.home.blog/2020/06/04/a-forget-me-not-summer-by-sophie-claire/)

Synopsis:

Liberty has never been a risk-taker. She loves the routine of her quiet life in the charming village of Willowbrook, with her Labrador, Charlie. But the arrival of a mysterious gift prompts Liberty to make some changes: starting with a daily challenge to say yes to everything for the month of December…

Fearless and independent, Alex could hardly be a less obvious fit for peaceful village life. But after an accident cuts short his promising motorcycling career, he finds himself in Willowbrook in search of new direction.

When the pair become unlikely housemates, sparks fly at Damselfly Cottage. Will living together prove impossible – especially when the first snow falls? Or, cut off from the outside world, can they help each other find what it takes to be brave this Christmas? 

My thoughts:

I was thrilled to be given an early opportunity to return to Willowbrook, having enjoyed meeting the residents last year in The Christmas Holiday. Liberty is a lovely young woman who loves living and working in Willowbrook but is missing her housemate and best friend, Carys, who is in hospital in a coma.

To help pay her bills, Liberty takes in a lodger, Alex, who is a friend of Luc (from A Forget-Me-Not Summer). Alex is trying to deal with being told that his racing career is over after an accident, and can’t believe he is stuck in the middle of nowhere with an grumpy young woman and a dog.

The book looks at how Liberty and Alex learn to communicate with each other, and start to learn about moving forwards from each other. Damselfly Cottage sounds beautiful as does the Button Hole shop – both are full of colour and cosiness.

I loved curling up to read this story, full of great characters, friendships, romance and a lovely Labrador called Charlie. I’ve already read a few festive books this year and this is one of my favourites.

Author Bio

Sophie Claire writes emotional stories set in England and in sunny Provence, where she spent her summers as a child. 
She has a French mother and a Scottish father, but was born in Africa and grew up in Manchester, England, where she still lives with her husband and two sons.
Previously, she worked in marketing and proofreading academic papers, but writing is what she always considered her ‘real job’ and now she’s delighted to spend her days dreaming up heartwarming contemporary romance stories set in beautiful places.