I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.A Notting Hill Christmas by Jon Rance
Published on 7.12.2015
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Meet Ben Canterbury, 29, single, lives in a poky flat in Notting Hill with horny Welshman, Rufus. His life has been one disappointment after another. What makes it worse is that his brother, Jamie, is the complete opposite - a Barrister to Ben’s Barista - with a family and a proper house in Twickenham. In an attempt to compete with his perfect brother, Ben insists he hosts the family Christmas, but it isn’t long before he realises he’s way out of his depth.
Ben’s flat isn't big enough for everyone (including one very angry dog), the Christmas tree’s from the £1 shop, the decorations are hung with Blu-Tack, and the turkey might not fit in the oven. Ben’s definitely not feeling the Christmas spirit. But when beautiful new neighbour, Mhairi McGregor, appears at his door, Ben’s Christmas worries go out of the window and he begins to wonder if it might not be the worst Christmas in history after all.
Amid all the drama, drinking and carnage of Christmas Day, will Ben find true love or will it be another disappointment to add to the list? A Notting Hill Christmas is a brilliantly funny, feel-good, festive novella perfect for fans of romantic comedies like Love Actually and Notting Hill.
Chick lit and rom com stage have been always dominated by women, but Jon Rance has found his way and cemented it as, in my opinion, one of the best male rom com and chick lit authors. He’s proven that men are perfectly capable of delivering funny and romantic stories, stories that equally can appeal to both men and women. I have nothing but respect for these type of male authors, people who are not afraid to swim against the current and show all their talents in a women dominated genre.
Jon Rance is definitely one of my favourite male chick lit and rom com writers. I honestly can’t believe he’s not snatched a publishing deal by now, as he’s a true gem! The way he creates his stories which ooze warmth and love for family, and his effortless humour, is just amazing and something which I rarely see despite having read so many chick lits.
‘A Notting Hill Christmas’ is the perfect humorous novella. Everything about it is just perfect, from the gorgeous cover, to the brilliantly written story and amazing, memorable characters. Ben Canterbury is one of the most awesome charecters I’ve ever read about, he’s 29, single and living with his friend in a tiny flat in Notting Hill. He’s the black sheep in the family always shadowed by his big brother’s achievements. Shy, very familiar with sarcasm, he’s the ultimate rom com hero. His older brother is the real star of the family, married, rich and successful, and as long as Ben can remember loved rubbing all of this in Ben’s face. Their rivalry is simply hilarious! But it’s time for Ben to stand up for himself, and show his family that he’s not just working in a coffee shop (he’s the manager of the coffee shop) and he too can organize a Christmas’ family party. His family is wary of his suggestion, but they finally accept Ben’s offer. Soon Ben realizes arranging this Christmas party in his tiny flat, with his crazy flatmate, and his non existing cooking skills, might not be just the easiest thing to pull off. While he’s trying to charm his new neighbour, please his parents and save his genitals from his mum’s new dog from hell, Ben experiences everything but Christmas magic. However, what Ben also realizes is he’s got the balls (pun intended) to prove himself and everyone around him he’s not the loser they think.
This was such a HILARIOUS read! I read it pretty late, and once I finished it (around 2 am) I had to wake up my husband to tell him all about it. Needless to say he was not amused by the wake up, but he did laugh out loud when I told him about the scenes with Ben and the dog. This is definitely not the type of book to read in public, because you won’t stop laughing. And the thing is, I could actually feel Jon wasn’t even trying to be funny, HE IS FUNNY! There’s nothing better than effortless humour. I’ve read so many books where the authors were trying so desperately to make me laugh but it was futile. Well, Jon did it and did it in such a brilliant way I was laughing with tears in my eyes.
I adored Ben, absolutely adored him and if he was real not a fictional character, I’d probably be hanging out with him. Dropping sarcastic comments about politicians or reality stars. He’d be my best friend in the whole wide world! Seriously, imagine Ben as the male version of Bridget Jones – the smoking problem. I’m telling you, he’s a star!
I absolutely adored this novella, which is definitely one of my favourite novella’s I’ve ever read and a rarity because I rarely (and by rarely I mean like once in a couple of years) give a novella a 5* rating. The main problem is because they are rather short, most authors don’t have the space to show their characters in their real light, or there’s not enough time for me to properly feel the characters. But Jon doesn’t have that problem. I bet even the shopping list he writes is funny and amusing.
A real gem and I HIGHLY recommend it! LOVED IT! LOVED IT!