The Christmas Escape follows best friends Christie and Alix as they prepare for a trip of a lifetime to Lapland and the Northern Lights to meet Christie's long lost aunt for the first time. But the path of true love and true friendship doesn't always run smooth, and there is some emotional drama along the way that threatens to de-rail the trip before anyone has even set foot on the plane.
The plot follows Christie, husband Seb, and daughter Holly, along with Alix, and family friend Zac before and during their trip to Lapland. There are secrets and burdens to be revealed, long-held fears, and a lack of communication that has held some of them back from being happy and achieving the life they want.
Sarah has portrayed the emotional drama well, treating each characters plotline with sensitivity, and showing what a real break/new location can do to bring people back together and realise what's important. The real gift here is setting all this emotional drama against the backdrop of a beautiful and naturally magical location.
I was sold on Lapland and The Northern Lights before I'd even read a page of the book on Net Galley. It's a real Christmas escape, and I almost felt like I wasn't just reading descriptions of the setting, like someone describing a picture, but I was picking up tips on the realities of being in such a cold, but an inspiring place. If you didn't want to visit the area before, you may well after. It was already on my bucket list, and reading The Christmas Escape has at least made me want to read more about it.
Sarah has a reputation for writing first-class Christmas novels, and it's easy to see why. The location for this novel shows the magic of nature and how best to enjoy it, and the personal stories kept me engaged until the end. Couple this with Holly's childlike excitement and wonder at all she sees and hears - and this is definitely the ultimate, easy to read, Christmas novel.
Thanks to HQ Stories for setting me up with a Net Galley widget to be able to take part in this blog tour. I may well buy a paperback at some point to keep. As always, all opinions are my own.
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