Wednesday 25 November 2020

Unstable Felicity - Cat Hodge - A Christmas Novella

Unstable Felicity
A Christmas Novella
Cat Hodge
ISBN 9781735851303

I picked this book up on a recommendation. I must admit the story took my by surprise. In many ways while reading it, it reminded me of If You Can Get It by Brendan Hodge. Who happens to be the authors’ husband. And it seems to be a family of authors as the authors sister-in-law is Rosamund Hodge, whose Bright Smoke, Cold Fire is already in ‘my to be read pile’. But as mentioned the story took me by surprise. This is a wonderful novella. The beginning of the description of the novel starts with:

“Home is the last place Jill O'Leary wants to be for the holidays, but that's exactly where she's going.”

And I am sure many of us can relate to that sentiment. Prior to my own marriage I only returned home every other year for Christmas. A little family time can often go a long way. And for Jill she has spent years avoiding the family, the family home, and the family business all in an attempt to get away from her controlling unstable mother. But duty has guilted her into a trip home over the holidays. He mother Regina needs her home to straighten out the books to save the family business, and sort out her late fathers investments. 

But what will happen to Jill a high-power accountant from LA back in small town Ohio. Soon she in entangled in family business, Christmas parade, baking, white elephant gift exchange and more. Confrontations with an ex-boyfriend, a tall dark stranger. And help from an unexpected quarter. Just when Jill thinks things cannot get any worse, they do. Time and time again. And it all comes to a head on a story Christmas eve. 

The characters are well written. The story has a few surprising twists. The prose is well written and it kept me reading. I could hardly put it down. It is a quick read but honestly, one that will leave you thinking. The book is at times funny and at times it has penetrating insight into the human condition. A story both dark and funny. A story of dysfunction and healing in mixed parts.  It was a great read and I know I will pick up anything else Hodge publishes. 

A great read for a quiet afternoon with a large cup of coffee or tea.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2020 Catholic Reading Plan

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