Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!

Deck the Halls by Donna Alward

Series: Darling, VT 

Title: Deck the Halls

Author: Donna Alward

Publisher: Swerve, St Martin’s Press

Published: October 3rd, 2017

Pages: 117

Rating: 4/5

This is a very moving, emotive festive story and if you are touched by such stories, I recommend that you have tissues at the ready when you read it!

Returning to civilian life after serving in the armed forces where he saw his best friend killed, George struggled to cope, becoming a homeless nomad until someone sees his potential, gives him support and employs him to work in the Ladybug Garden Centre, helping him start to turn his life around. It is there that the twin sister of his dead friend finds him. The last time her brother and George had visited her family home, she and George had connected. Now she realises how changed he is. She wants to know what happened to her brother and has been searching for George for years to find out and get some measure of closure for herself and her parents. George is reticent to discuss anything from the past which haunts him. Will reconnecting with his past help him heal?

This is a moving story of second chances, overcoming feelings of guilt and moving on to give true love the opportunity to develop and grow. It is a short but poignant festive story, touching on some difficult themes with care and consideration. I will definitely look out for more by this author in future!

I requested and received a copy of this novel, via NetGalley, with no obligation. This is my honest review after choosing to read it.


With shades of It’s a Wonderful Life, one man must face his past to find his future this Christmas.

In the last year, George’s life has drastically changed. The formerly homeless veteran now has a job he likes, a family in the residents of Darling, VT, and for the first time in years, a home. But while his present is good, he’s still haunted by the past, a past that appears shortly before Christmas when the older sister of his brother-in-arms hunts him down and finds him in Darling, working at the Ladybug Garden Center.

Amy’s looking for closure for her family after her brother’s death in the Middle East, but the serious man she finds working in Vermont doesn’t resemble the soldier she remembers from years before. This man is hardened and yet somehow fragile, too, and in her desire to find out what really happened to her brother, she learns more about George than she ever expected.

With a little Christmas magic and the whole town supporting them, can these two bruised hearts make a future together?

Buy Links:    Amazon (UK)         Amazon (US)        Barnes and Noble

2 comments on “Deck the Halls by Donna Alward

  1. Carrie
    October 3, 2017

    Nice review! I wouldn’t have minded this one being longer as it was nice to have characters that felt real with real problems to cope with but still enjoyed it as a novella. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. bicted
    October 4, 2017

    I agree – the author packed a lot into it and still kept the characters and scenarios believable, definitely a skill not shared by all novella authors!


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