Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Blog Tour: The Christmas Wedding Guest by Susan Mallery

Pages: 432
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: September 28, 2021
Publisher: HQN Books
Source: Publisher for review
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "The Somerville sisters believe in love, but they’ve lost faith it will happen for them. Reggie hasn’t been home since the end of the world’s shortest engagement. When her parents decide to renew their vows, she buffs up her twinkle to help with the Christmas wedding. Unexpectedly, Toby, her first love, is back too, and the spark between them shines as brightly as ever. In the spirit of the season, will they let go of past hurts and greet the New Year together?  Done waiting for the one, Dena is pregnant and on her own—on purpose. But then a gorgeous, sad-eyed songwriter checks in to a room at her inn. Micah, unable to write since he lost his wife, finds inspiration in Dena’s determination to be a mom. One snowflake-speckled kiss and he’s a goner. But Dena is afraid to believe that a rock star could fall for a cookie-cutter small-town girl like her.  As the Christmas wedding draws closer, these two sisters just might unwrap the most treasured gift of all—love."



Reggie Somerville hasn't returned to her idyllic home town since her engagement broke off.  Her sister, Dena, is a local schoolteacher, newly pregnant, and is working on a charity knitting project with her students. To top it off, Dena and Reggie's parents are renewing their vows this holiday season, so Reggie will most definitely have to return home to Wishing Tree.  Reggie offers to help her mom with her vow renewal plans and to assist Dena with her class project as Dena is suffering from morning sickness.  Dena's situation isn't a conventional one. Dena decided to get pregnant as a single mother through artificial insemination and not only is she dealing with her pregnancy by herself, she is also teaching, and she runs the local B&B.  She is, quite simply, overextended. While Reggie is helping Dena's class project, she runs into her ex-boyfriend, Toby, who has moved back home to raise his son, Harrison.  Toby has also volunteered to help with the class project, so cue the awkward situation as well as the eventual butterflies between them.  Toby hasn't had it easy either and has a lot of baggage.  Then Micah shows up at the B&B, a well-known musician, to find some rest and relaxation with the hope he can find inspiration for his next song.  He is also healing from a tragic event, but Dena catches his eye.  Even though both Somerville sisters are bridesmaids this holiday season, it appears they will have their own chance for love in The Christmas Wedding Guest

I really liked the character of Reggie in The Christmas Wedding Guest. I liked her relationship with her sister, her parents, and even her dog.  When she returns home, she has to face her past and things become even more complicated when her high school ex-boyfriend re-enters the picture.  I really enjoyed how they slowly rekindled the spark while also addressing a lot of their baggage.  Toby's story is a sad one and I did feel badly for him as well as his son.  Dena, on the other hand, is an interesting character in that she is taking things into her own hands by deciding to become a single mom.  I like her determination; however, I didn't find her story (or her love interest in Micah) to be as interesting at Reggie's.

The secondary characters were just ok in The Christmas Wedding Guest. Reggie and Dena's mother is a bridezilla. The worst. I am not kidding. There's no way as a grown adult I would have put up with her. I mean this is a vow renewal not a wedding at Windsor Castle.  Relax.  The stuff she put her grown daughters through is bizarre. I really didn't care for that part of the story or her antics.

Be forewarned that The Christmas Wedding Guest can be rather dark for a holiday novel. There's some issues throughout the novel that pop up that can be considered serious, so that took me by surprise a bit; however, it was balanced nicely by the possible love matches and the upcoming wedding.

The thing I liked the most about The Christmas Wedding Guest was the adorable town of Wishing Tree, Washington.  I loved the Stars Hollow vibe, the friendly neighbors, and their adorable traditions around Christmas and the first snowfall.  I thought it was very well done and reminiscent of a Hallmark movie. Who doesn't love when a charming town comes together to celebrate the holidays?

So, are you a fan of Susan Mallery? Is The Christmas Wedding Guest on your TBR list? Do you enjoy holiday reads? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. 



  1. Oh man, that bridezilla mom would probably annoy me to no end!

    1. Right? I was like why is she dealing with this, especially the pregnant sister! Thanks for visiting, Angela!


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