Holiday Romance | By Catherine Walsh
Book Review | Contemporary Romance
She’s meant to be catching flights, not catching feelings…
Molly and Andrew are just trying to get home to Ireland for the holidays, when a freak snowstorm grounds their flight.
Nothing romantic has ever happened between them: they’re friends and that’s all. But once a year, for the last ten years, Molly has spent seven hours and fifteen minutes sitting next to Andrew on the last flight before Christmas from Chicago to Dublin, drinking terrible airplane wine and catching up on each other’s lives. In spite of all the ways the two friends are different, it’s the holiday tradition neither of them has ever wanted to give up.
Molly isn’t that bothered by Christmas, but—in yet another way they’re total opposites—Andrew is a full-on fanatic for the festive season and she knows how much getting back to Ireland means to him. So, instead of doing the sane thing and just celebrating the holidays together in America, she does the stupid thing. The irrational thing. She vows to get him home. And in time for his mam’s famous Christmas dinner.
The clock is ticking. But Molly always has a plan. And—as long as the highly-specific combination of taxis, planes, boats, and trains all run on time—it can’t possibly go wrong.
What she doesn’t know is that, as the snow falls over the city and over the heads of two friends who are sure they’re not meant to be together, the universe might just have a plan of its own…
Narrative and Plot
True to her style, Catherine Walsh brings back the witty, self-deprecating heroine in Molly who is embarking on a whirlwind trip as she races against time to reach home for Christmas. Or rather get her airport friend Andrew home. The book goes between the present and the previous flights between them over a decade giving us the much-needed insight for a friends-to-lovers trope.
The plot is as simple as that. Yet it is entertaining and I love the classic and genuine rom-com style the author adapts in her books. Not to mention the Irish theme is always a delight. It is a refreshing Christmas romance told in the most traditional way.
Characters and Conflicts
The festive season isn’t just about the protagonist and the love interest. It always includes a family of some kind. There are a number of colorful characters in the book. Though their presence is brief, they make an impression within that time period and I would love to see a companion novel with Christian Fitzpatrick. I mean, why not?
However, Holiday romance focuses on Molly and Andrew. Two people who are quite different from each other, yet together they complement each other too. It is not just about the chemistry, they fit in quite well as friends too. It was a delight to read their progression.
Normally, I would complain about the conflict being too inconsequential in rom-coms these days. Please check my previous romance reviews. I moan about that a lot. The conflict here is small too but it works. Because it is very much real and while most rom-coms go altruistic about it, this one actually took a more realistic path. As realistic as a conflict can be in an “I-will-get-you-home-for-
Holiday Romance is a cozy romance novel to curl up with during the festive season. It has mistle toes, chocolates, panettone (?), an airport mad dash, a cozy Christmas dinner, and a sizzling hot romance on the side.