Review: Christmas on the Little Cornish Isles

cover-christmas cornish islaesTitle: Christmas on the Little Cornish Isles
Author: Phillipa Ashley
Series: Little Cornish Isles #1
Genre: Romance/Women’s Fiction
Length: Novel
Available: 18th Sept


Christmas has arrived on the Cornish Isles of Scilly, bringing mistletoe, surprises and more than a sprinkle of romance . . . Fans of Poldark and Carole Matthews will love this brand-new festive read from the author of the bestselling Cornish Café series.

For Maisie Samson, this Christmas is going to be different. After years working in a busy Cornish pub, she’s moved back to quiet Gull Island where she grew up, to help her parents run the family inn.

But even though she can’t wait for the festive season to arrive, Maisie cannot shake the memories of what happened to her last Christmas – the day she lost everything. She keeps herself busy, setting up the tree and hanging mistletoe ready for her first proper family Christmas in years.

Until a new arrival to the island walks into her bar and changes everything. Australian backpacker Patrick is looking for a job for the low season. When Maisie takes him on, she doesn’t expect him to last the week, but to her surprise Patrick is the perfect fit. Charming and handsome, could Maisie allow herself to hope that she and Patrick could be more than just colleagues?

As Christmas approaches, Maisie finds herself dreading the spring, when Patrick is due to leave. With the help of a little Christmas magic, can Maisie get the happily ever after she always dreamed of?

Christmas on the Little Cornish Isles is the first in a stunning new series from Phillipa Ashley. The perfect book to snuggle up with this Christmas.

Source: ARC from Avon Books UK via NetGalley

This is a lovely small community romance with a slightly different setting – the Scilly Isles (which are off the western tip of Cornwall for those who don’t know). And I’ll admit that was what drew me in. I’m a Westcountry girl and Scilly is somewhere I’ve always wanted to go, so it was lovely to read a story set there.

But this book is also about more than just it’s setting, with our heroine, Maisie, attempting to keep her parents pub going through another winter. Along with the usual issues of a dwindling customer base, keeping the building safe against storms and finding time to get all the important things done, we also have the prospect of a wealthy local trying to buy up all the businesses on Gull Island – including Maisie’s inn. Summer ends and winter gradually draws in towards Christmas as events unfold, with a bit of romance, a dose of community spirit and a few painful memories and secrets helping to keep things interesting.

Maisie is determined and hardworking, not to mention more than a little heart sore. She’s got a lot to worry about – the inn, her parents, her hunky new barman – but she still finds time to be a good friend and neighbour. She’s also likeable without being too sweet, which was nice.

Patrick is our sexy Australian drifter who, like all cliché Aussies visiting these isles, is great behind the bar. There is a lot more to him than that and it’s obvious from the first that he has a secret – one which he’s in no hurry to reveal, but you sense is going to mean trouble when it does come out. In the meantime he’s friendly, fits in well and is good for Maisie. I liked the pair of them together – they get on well and make a good team.

Much like the whole of Gull Island. There’s always plenty going on to keep the plot rolling, with some fun side characters to bring life to the place. I’ll admit I would have liked to have more of a sense of Gull itself, beyond the area right in front of the inn and Hell Cove, but on the whole this was a lovely, easy read to while away the winter nights. I will definitely be looking out for more from this series.

Christmas on the Little Cornish Isles is out September 18th.
Visit Phillipa Ashley for more details.



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