The 12 Books of Christmas: Christmas Island by Natalie Normann

*I was given an ARC of Christmas Island in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to One Chapter More and Natalie Normann*

Christmas Island was a fun contemporary romance with buckets of festivity. Rating 3.5/5.

Holly, a doctor from London, is going to Norway to spend Christmas with her brother and his family. She is currently on leave from the hospital she works at for reasons unknown to the reader.

When arriving on the Island it is cold, dark and not at all the festive getaway she was expecting. Holly nearly falls off a cliff but is saved by a cat named Frøy and his owner Tor.

Tor is not a resident of the island and is also visiting for the Christmas season. Known to the islanders as ‘the hermit’ he too has issues of his own that he hopes can be solved by some time away.

The best part of this book for me was definitely the scenery descriptions. I now really want to visit Norway at Christmas and experience everything for myself. The island sounds like a beautiful place and I could vividly picture every event that was taking place.

I also really enjoyed learning about Norwegian traditions, especially all the parts that included food. There are recipes at the end of the book if you are interested in making anything for yourself. Which I thought was a really nice touch.

The festiveness of this book was also great. The chapters around the Christmas market and Christmas Eve were some of my favourites. Purely for the heartwarming and Christmassy vibes.

However, the romance was slightly lacking. I have found that with these types of books it can be so over the top and cliche that I actually didn’t mind too much. Although this is marketed as a romance and considering it is adult fiction it was almost painfully PG. The characters would hardly kiss without it going off the pages. This isn’t really something that ruined the book for me, but it did seem a little confusing.

You find out that Holly is on leave from the hospital she works at because of something bad that she did. This is not something that you can even remotely guess in the first half of the book. When the answer did come up I found it to be quite a lacklustre reason. I won’t spoil it here in case anyone hasn’t read this yet, but it was very underwhelming.

The same goes for Tor. He seems to be a very mysterious character with what could have been a shady past. But no. It’s quite the opposite really.

With that being said, I still really enjoyed Christmas Island and would definitely recommend it to anyone who is looking for a festive read with a little bit of romance.


Like this post? Why not read this one too? The 12 Books of Christmas: One Kiss Before Christmas by Emma Jackson


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