If you’re looking for a stocking filler for a bookworm, you’ve come to the right place! Today I’ll be reviewing Elaine Everest’s new book Christmas at Woolworths, which is bound to get you in the festive mood! Enjoy!
Even though there was a war on, the Woolworths girls brought Christmas cheer to their customers
Best friends Sarah, Maisie and Freda are brought together by their jobs at Woolworths. With their loved ones away on the front line, their bonds of friendship strengthen each day. Betty Billington is the manager at Woolworths, and a rock for the girls, having given up on love . . . Until a mysterious stranger turns up one day – could he reignite a spark in Betty?
As the year draws to a close, and Christmas approaches, the girls must rely on each other to navigate the dark days that lie ahead . . .
With so much change, can their friendship survive the war?
Christmas at Woolworths is a heartwarming story set during the Second World War. It follows the lives of the female employees at a Woolworths store in a small town outside London, focusing on their friendships and romances.
All the characters in Christmas at Woolworths are fantastic, and it’s easy to empathise with them. I particularly liked Maisie, who was hoping to have a child after a previous miscarriage and was keen to do her part for the war effort. I also thought that Gwyneth’s backstory was very intriguing, and I did fear for her. I loved how strong the girls’ friendships were – they always supported each other and put each other first, and tried to continue their normal lives, despite the fact that there was a war going on.
It is clear that Elaine Everest did a lot of research before writing Christmas at Woolworths – she was actually a ‘Woolworths girl’ herself – and this is shown through the description of the shop and the other aspects of the war.
What I didn’t realise until I was about halfway through reading the book, is that Christmas at Woolworths is actually a sequel to The Woolworths Girls, an earlier novel by Elaine Everest. Nevertheless, Christmas at Woolworths is a brilliant standalone novel and you don’t need to read The Woolworths Girls first to understand what’s going on. Also, I’ll point out that Christmas at Woolworths is fairly long, at just over 400 pages, and I did think that some parts weren’t that relevant to the story.
Overall, I’d highly recommend Christmas at Woolworths to anyone who loves a bit of historical/war fiction. It’ll make you reminisce about Woolworths.
Thank you so much to Faye Rogers for letting me read this book.
Have you read Christmas at Woolworths? Are there any books you’ve read recently that you’d recommend? Let me know!