The Tolliver Family Farms of North Carolina had been selling Christmas trees every year in the West Village of New York City while the family lived in a cute, vintage camper called Spammy (as it looks like a canned meat tin). But this year, father Jock was recuperating from illness and son Murphy couldn't make the trip alone. Sister Kerry reluctantly agreed to help. She'd been recently laid off from her job at an ad agency in Charlotte and had to move back in with her mother, who was long divorced from Jock. Once in New York, Kerry meets the locals including the charming and newly divorced Patrick McCaleb and his adorable six-year-old son, Austin. Like Murphy, who everyone seemed to know, Kerry is befriended by an eclectic group of neighbors including Heinz, a grumpy old man who is a bit of a mystery. A budding romance with Patrick has Kerry rethinking her life and what her next steps should be after all the trees are sold.
If you're looking for a sweet book with a nice holiday backdrop, look no further than Bright Lights, Big Christmas by the always delightful Mary Kay Andrews. In 2021, I was enchanted by Andrews' The Santa Suit, and I was happy to see there was a reference to its storyline in this book. As much as I enjoyed her last holiday-themed book, I found this new one to be even more satisfying. I loved the New York City setting and the endearing cast of characters. I find it essential to alternate reading emotionally draining books with joyful ones. If you are the same way, I highly recommend adding this book to your list.
Many thanks to St. Martin's Press for the advance copy and the opportunity to have a big smile placed on my face.
Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Contemporary Fiction | Romance | Holiday.
Publication Date: September 26, 2023.
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