On the windswept Scandinavian Åland Islands, the festive season is snowy and chilly—yet breathtakingly beautiful.
It’s time for Alicia to enjoy her first Christmas back on her beloved Islands with her family. There’ll be traditional dancing around the tree and sipping mulled wine in front of a cozy fire. But peace is broken by Alicia’s estranged husband, Liam, who springs an unwelcome and devastating surprise, while her ex-lover, Patrick, temps her with an altogether different kind of future. Alicia faces impossible choices to keep her family together.
With her world crashing around her, can Alicia create the idyllic Island Christmas she’s always dreamt about?
Meanwhile, Brit, Alicia’s best friend, returns to the Islands to lick her wounds after a particularly bloody break-up with an Italian chef. When she meets her new boss, the Captain of a Baltic cruise liner, sparks fly. Brit can’t help but fall quickly in love with Jukka, but when she discovers his murky past, she fears her heart is about to be broken yet again. Are the rumors about Jukka true, or just typical small island gossip?
Join this quirky Scandinavian island community for a Christmas you’ll never forget!
An Island Christmas is a sequel to Helena’s first novel set on Åland, The Island Affair, but it can also be read as a standalone book.
I do enjoy this author’s atmospheric and complex novels. Always so much more to them that meets the eye at first glance.
‘An Island Christmas’ is the second in a series – you definitely hope it’s not the last! – but works perfectly well as a standalone.
The story centres on three strong women – Alicia, Brita and Frida. They all have some tough decisions to make concerning their futures. They can make changes and help themselves, or they can just drift on in less than ideal circumstances. They are all very likeable people, all flawed, all very convincing and ‘real’. You can’t help getting drawn into their lives.
The traditional Scandinavian setting is about as festive as it gets with snow, ice and wonderful food. But this isn’t a slushy, over-sentimentalised Christmas story, thank goodness. Just like no-one’s Christmas is ever completely perfect, unlike those we see in films or TV series, this seasonal novel has its gritty, rough-edged, messy side. That makes it all the more believable. There’s even a hint of menace.
Incredibly well written and enjoyable, do add this one to your Christmas reading list.
- Format: Kindle Edition
- Publisher: Newhurst Press (28 Nov. 2019)
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: A prize-winning author, Helena Halme writes contemporary fiction with a hint of both Nordic Noir and romance. She’s a former BBC journalist, bookseller and magazine editor. Originally from Finland where she gained an MSc in Marketing, she also holds an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University and writes in English.
Helena acts as Nordic Ambassador for the Alliance of Independent Authors and helps other writers publish and market their books.
Helena has published seven fiction titles, including The English Heart, a best-selling Nordic romance, which won an Awesome Indies badge on publication. The bittersweet 1980s love story between a Finnish student and a British Navy officer is now a series, including a prequel novella, The Young Heart, the sequels The Faithful Heart, The Good Heart and Helena’s latest title, The True Heart, book four in The Nordic Heart Series. Helena has also published a non-fiction title, Write Your Story: Turn Your Life into Fiction in 10 Easy Steps.
Helena is addicted to Nordic Noir and dances to Abba songs when nobody’s watching.