Everybody needs a great Christmas book (or a dozen) on their autumn bookshelf in the run up to the big day, and Karen King’s latest offering, The Best Christmas Ever, couldn’t be more perfect for fans of festive romance!
I’m delighted to be a part of Karen’s blog tour on publication week and excited to dive into this book with its truly gorgeous cover. Without further ado, let’s find out what Yuletide treats are waiting inside…
The Best Christmas Ever
A heart-warming Christmas romance, perfect for fans of Sarah Morgan, Mandy Baggot and Milly Johnson.
Lexi Forde adores Christmas. She’s especially looking forward to it this year as it’s the first Christmas with her boyfriend Ben and her older brother is visiting from Canada with his family. So they’re having a family Christmas at her parents’ house in Devon.
But then Lexi sees Ben kissing someone else and discovers he’s been having an affair. Devastated, she travels to Devon alone. She’s determined not to let her break up with Ben spoil her family Christmas. But when she arrives, Lexi discovers the council won’t allow the Christmas tree on The Green to be decorated this year; it’s too dangerous and has to come down. Lexi is desperate to save their favourite family tradition and make this Christmas extra special.
Can she save the tree and mend her broken heart in time for Christmas?
Karen King Bio
Karen King is a multi-published author of both adult and children’s books. She has had ten romantic novels published, two psychological thrillers, 120 children’s books, two young adult novels, and several short stories for women’s magazines. Her romantic novel The Cornish Hotel by the Sea became an international bestseller, reaching the top one hundred in the Kindle charts in both the UK and Australia. Karen is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, the Society of Authors and the Society of Women Writers and Journalists. Karen now lives in Spain where she loves to spend her non-writing time exploring the quaint local towns with her husband, Dave, when she isn’t sunbathing or swimming in the pool, that is.
This extract is taken from Chapter Four, after Lexi learns her boyfriend Ben has been cheating on her, dumps him and goes down to Devon to spend Christmas with her family. She’s looking forward to a family Christmas with the traditional carol service around the Christmas tree on the green on Christmas Eve but is surprised to discover that the tree hasn’t been decorated yet.
‘Your mum said you went for a walk to look at the lights. You always used to love doing that at Christmas time,’ her dad said. ‘The village looks beautiful all lit up, doesn’t it?’
‘Gorgeous! Although, I only went as far as the green.’ Lexi swallowed a mouthful of the pie before continuing. ‘I was surprised to see that the fir tree isn’t decorated yet. I thought they always did it the second week of December. I notice that it’s cordoned off, though, so I guess they’re going to do it on Monday.’
‘They’re not decorating it at all. The council want to chop the tree down. They said that it’s unsafe.’ Granny Mabe told her. ‘Load of rubbish if you ask me.’
‘What? Surely not?’ Lexi asked incredulously.
She saw her parents exchange looks. Then her father said, ‘I’m afraid so. That’s why that part of the green is cordoned off. They don’t want anyone going on it in case one of the branches falls off the tree.’
Lexi was stunned. She couldn’t imagine Christmas without the traditional Christmas Eve carol service around the huge fir tree on the green. ‘When did they say this? Can’t they do anything to save the tree?’
‘Apparently not. We weren’t told until this Thursday, which didn’t give us much time to do anything. We kept expecting the tree to be decorated any day, and when we enquired, the council replied that they were dealing with it. Then on Thursday we were told that the tree was too dangerous and would probably have to come down. Some of the branches are dying back and they’re worried that the pressure of the lights and decorations might cause the branches to break and injure someone.’
‘Oh no! Can’t they simply chop off the affected branches?’ Lexi asked in dismay. The huge fir tree was an important feature of the village. She couldn’t bear to think of it being chopped down.
‘I don’t know, dear. There were a couple of men looking at it last week – I think they must have been tree surgeons; one of them was on one of those mobile platform things and checking out the branches at the top of the tree. He must have declared it unsafe,’ her mother said. ‘Everyone’s really sad about it. There’s talk of moving the carol service to the square, but it won’t be the same.’
This was awful, Lexi thought. The carol service around the Lystone Christmas tree was such a big part of Christmas. People came from miles around to take part. And it was such a shame for it to happen this year, too, when Jay was coming over from Canada. It was their first family Christmas for years and it would have been lovely for them all to attend the traditional ‘lighting the tree’ carol service together, just like they used to do.
Surely there was something they could do to save the tree.
I’m certainly intrigued to find out more!
Raising a Christmassy glass of Baileys on ice to you, Karen on publication day. I hope TBCE soars as high as Santa’s reindeer!