Book Review - The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss


I love romantic comedies as well as Christmas stories so when these two are combined together it makes for a fun, cozy read. It’s set in the sleepy town of Blexford England and centres around Kate Turner, a 34 year old designer who has all but given up on love.

Kate has a circle of friends, but the romantic prospects in Blexford are far and few. Matt is a friend from school who she had once shared and kiss with. Matt owns the Pear Street Cafe and Kate has a side job where she bakes for the cafe. Laura is a mother of two who remains great friends with Kate after many years and only wishes the best for her. Indeed, she’s sad to see Kate without someone special in her life, and so signs her up with a dating agency which proffers twelve dates with twelve men in the days leading up to Christmas. Although apprehensive at first, Kate decides she has nothing to lose and it might be fun to meet new people before the holidays.

The story continues with Kate attending each of the dates which include an escape room, a gingerbread house contest and salsa dancing. These dates are absolutely hilarious and full of banter and Christmas fun. Matt, who is dating another woman, is anxious that Kate is placing herself in unsafe situations. She assures him these singles have all been vetted for safety. What she later learns is that the agency is on the look out for those men who are using the dates as opportunities for a quick way to bed their dates. The question is, can Kate avoid these men and find true love during these twelve dates? Or will she realize that sometimes love is where you least expect it.

I really enjoyed this debut novel by Jenny Bayliss and look forward to reading more of her work. I appreciate her writing style, with shows great character development infused with humour. I enjoyed the scenes where Kate is sketching and colouring for new fabric patterns and would not be surprised to learn the author has a connection to this art form. The book flows well and I appreciated experiencing the dates through Kate’s eyes. I’m a big fan of rom-com banter and this book has it in droves. Blexford as a setting is perfect for that small town Christmas charm and reflects a community of friends supporting one another.

I listened to the audiobook version which I played at my usual 1.25x and found it was perfect for easy listening. The book is narrated by Elizabeth Knowelden who has a lovely, articulate quality to her voice. I would not hesitate to recommend the audiobook version to those who enjoy this format.

My rating: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️/5

34 comments:

  1. Sounds like a great debut and a really fun read! Lovely review ☺️

    Anika | chaptersofmay.com

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  2. This sounds like the perfect cosy up get ready for Christmas book. I have lots of friends who love romcoms and I think this would be an ideal stocking filler!

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  3. I love seeing all the holiday books showing up. Thanks for sharing this one.

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  4. Sounds like a great book. I love the holiday feeling.

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  5. Sounds brilliant! I love a Christmas book and have been plowing through mine!

    I might have to add this to next years Christmas pile x

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  6. I've been looking around for Christmas reads for next month and can't wait to add this one to my reading list :)

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  7. Oh this sounds like an absolutely delightful read. Can't go wrong with a good Christmas book. Great review!

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  8. This sounds like such a fun premise with the 12 dates for the 12 days of Christmas! I love a cheesy Christmas movie so I'm sure this book would be right up my alley.

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  9. This sounds like such a good debut, I love a good rom com (much more than straight up romance) so this sounds like a really fun relaxing read for Christmas time x

    Sophie
    www.glowsteady.co.uk

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  10. Sounds like a perfect winter fireplace book! Great review. And I just love the idea of romance on audible!

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  11. This sounds like such a lovely festive read and something I'd definitely enjoy snuggled up under a blanket.

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    1. I hope that you enjoy it! Thanks for stopping by.

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  12. Aw, this book sounds like the perfect winter read! I will definitely be adding it to my list! Thanks for sharing!

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  13. Sounds like a good novel! I was looking for some around Christmas time!

    Thanks for your review and discovery ♡

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  14. This sounds like such a lovely festive read, I’ll have to add it to my TBR list!

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  15. This sounds like such a fun read! Great review!

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