Christmas for Beginners by Carole Mathews – Review

Christmas for Beginners by Carole Mathews
Series: Happiness for Beginners #2
Publisher: Sphere
First published October 29th 2020
Genres: Fiction, Christmas, Romance
Pages: 416
Format: Paperback
Buy: Book Depository | Amazon

The gloriously festive sequel to readers’ favourite and Sunday Times bestselling novel Happiness for Beginners


Christmas is fast approaching at the new Hope Farm. Owner Molly Baker has been convinced to organise an open day to raise some much-needed funds ahead of the New Year, but the nativity tableau is proving challenging. With anti-social sheep, awkward alpacas and a seriously sequined Santa Claus to assemble, Molly is feeling overwhelmed, and in desperate need of some Christmas spirit . . .

Despite the chaos of the farm getting in the way of her event planning, Molly is looking forward to spending the holidays with Shelby and Lucas, hopeful that a happy family Christmas is exactly what they need to draw them all together. But while she is busy making plans on the farm, Shelby, it seems, has ideas of his own.

As the nativity draws near, the team are working hard to pull off a spectacular festive fete – and make sure the animals and humans remain on their best behaviour. Will this Christmas be merry and bright, or is there more than one surprise in store for Hope Farm?

A must-read festive tale from the queen of fun-filled and life-affirming fiction, Christmas for Beginners is the PERFECT winter treat!

This book is set at Hope Farm, a farm that is meant to help animals and kids with all the therapeutic glory of animals and nature. Christmas is approaching and Molly, our mc is convinced to organise an open day to raise money to help keep the farm going! But everything is not going according to plan, especially when naughty alpacas decide to take a bite on baby Jesus!

Molly lives in a caravan on the farm with Lucas, her boyfriend Shelby’s kid. Shelby is an important soap star allergic to animals and definitely doesn’t enjoy passing time on the farm and far prefers to live in his house 10min away. Molly is wishing for a beautiful family Christmas but that is also not going according to plan.

How exactly is this Christmas going to be? Will everything she hopes for magically happen?

I haven’t read the first book in the series and although I would have liked to, I don’t think it’s necessary to be able to enjoy this one. You get more background if you read the first one, but for me, I just wanted some Christmas goodness.

This book is set on a farm, which I found extremely exciting! There’s tons of animals and they are all rescues, which is beautiful. They are far from easy to manage but our mc loves her farm and her animals and gives her life to them. I especially loved the Alpacas, they are just so funny! I’ve been with alpacas before and definitely they always have that air of mischievous little bundles of trouble. They are incredible tho, I just absolutely love animals so I was definitely having the best of times reading about all of them.

But this farm helps more than just animals, it helps children too, troubled children of any kind, that go there and have a good time far from their daily lives. It helps heal their wounds, especially Lucas, who is definitely a bit of a difficult kid and the son of our mc’s boyfriend Shelby, which Lucas is definitely not a fan of! His relationship with his father only complicates our mc’s relationship too…

I really liked Molly and how hopeful and happy she is. I love her love for animals and how easygoing she is. Loved reading about her daily life and literally just want to go to her farm and pass my own Christmas there!

The animals are definitely what makes this book worth it, they all have their own personalities and funny names and they give life to the book.

This had a slow start but ended up being a lot of fun. It’s funny, hopeful and Christmas-y and everything I hoped it was going to be! It was also nice to see how rather difficult it is to own a farm and care for it, it’s not something I ever thought much about and didn’t even realise it could be this hardcore, even tho very enjoyable and rewarding!

Definitely a fun Christmas read and I am all ready for more!

TW: miscarriage, abuse, anxiety

What did you think of it? Have you read it? Let’s discuss it in the comments below!

2 thoughts on “Christmas for Beginners by Carole Mathews – Review

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