Monday, 6 December 2021

Book Review - A Winter In Wonderland by Isla Gordon

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Title: A Winter In Wonderland
Author: Isla Gordon
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Sphere
Publication Date: 11th November 2021
Rating: 5 Stars

Will a magical winter in Lapland help Myla fall in love with festive?

Myla is the UK's least-festive woman. Starting the year she found out the truth about Santa Claus, everything bad that's ever happened to her occurs around Christmas. Nowadays, she wants nothing to do with this time of year, so of course she would lose the bet with her sister and be forced to put herself forward for a seasonal job in Lapland, welcoming tourists to Santa's winter wonderland for the holidays.

Ten weeks, temperatures well below freezing, days that are mostly dark, and the need to stay brimming with Christmas spirit doesn't fill Myla with joy as she heads off to the arctic circle for winter in Finland. But as she discovers that Lapland is more than Santa Claus's Village, the very last person she ever thought she'd fall for turns out to be a man who plays an Elf, and who is bound to stay in character at all times.

Will a little love under the Northern Lights convince Myla that her bad luck might finally have come to an end?

Sleigh bells ring, are you visiting?
In the place, Christmas is glittering
A beautiful tale
I'm happy to wail (well I can't sing in tune)
Reading a Winter in Wonderland!

Gone away are festive blues (at least that is what all of Myla's friends and family wish would happen)
Here to stay are new woos (there is one gorgeous elf that can't help but melt anyones heart)
He throws a snow ball
At one and all 
Reading a Winter in Wonderland!

Away in Lapland new memories can grow
For this reader who really loves the snow
It's a fab book
Please go take a look! 
For this story made me feel all aglow! 

Then again, there's Myla
Who's festive memories may conspire
To wreck another job
And possibly sob
Reading a Winter in Wonderland!

Kudos Richard B Smith, who wrote Walking In a Winter Wonderland the song, which I am really not that great at re-wording - and also to Isla Gordon who has written one of my favourite festive books of this holiday season, A Winter In Wonderland. 

Myla is not a fan of Christmas to the extent she leaves any temp job the second anything remotely festive crops up. But when she loses her temping agency and home in the same day, and then a bet with her sister, she ends up having to commit to working in Finnish Lapland over Christmas and hopefully facing up to the season and her old bad memories. 

She's definitely not looking for love but it's an elf that happens to catch her eye as they grow closer and I loved the Elve's antics while he was on duty.  I also loved all the descriptions of Myla's role at an adventure guide, with the snow shoes, snowmobiling, reindeer sleigh rides and huskies!  And the gorgeous vision from the cover may feature too! 

I read this while I was recovering from booster jab side effects and it completely took my mind of the painful arm and splitting headache and by the time I was finished devouring the pages a few hours later, having read it in one go, I can say my head felt a lot better, and I was completely in love with the setting, the writing, Myla's new best friend and her attitude to life and saunas, and just about every single festive mention in the book. 

I loved being transported to Lapland from the warmth of my living room, and even if Myla wasn't overly excited by all elements of the job, I was very excited for them, and can't help but wish I had tried to get a job being an Elf at a Santa's village when I was a bit younger and doing seasonal work. 

It's another wonderful book from Isla Gordon, completely transported me and had me gripped. I thoroughly enjoyed my time reading this. 

Thank you to Sphere and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

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