Blogmas Day 2: Christmas Cracker Book Tag


I know this tag is fairly old, but I’ve seen it done on a few booktuber channels and blogs and it looked like a lot of fun, so I thought I would give it ago this BLOGMAS!


Find a book with a wintery cover.

I’m going to break this question into two parts. Part A) I’ll find a book I’m yet to read with a wintery cover, and Part B) I’ll find a book I’m yet to read with a summery cover since we are officially two days into Summer here in Australia.

PART A) Winter read: Us Against You by Fredrik Backman.

Everything about this book screams winter to me. The colours, the image of snow and ice, and the fact that it features a  hockey town.

Beartown is dying . . .

Tucked in a forest in the frozen north, Beartown’s residents are tough and hardworking. They don’t expect life to be easy, but they do expect it to be fair.

Which is why the sudden loss of their hockey players to the rival town of Hed hurts. Everyone needs something to cheer for in the long winter nights. Now they have nothing.

Beartown is dying . . .

Tucked in a forest in the frozen north, Beartown’s residents are tough and hardworking. They don’t expect life to be easy, but they do expect it to be fair.

Which is why the sudden loss of their hockey players to the rival town of Hed hurts. Everyone needs something to cheer for in the long winter nights. Now they have nothing.

So when a new star player arrives, Coach Peter sees an opportunity to rebuild the team – to take on Hed and restore Beartown’s fortunes. But not everyone in town sees it his way.

As the big game between both towns approaches, the rivalry turns bitter and all too real. Once the stands rumbled with threats to ‘kill’ and ‘ruin’ each other, but the residents didn’t mean it. Now they do.

By the time the last goal is scored, someone in Beartown will be dead . . .

PART B) Summer read: Last bridge Before Home by Lily Malone

At the time of writing this post, NSW and QLD are experiencing the worst bushfires the country has ever seen. Although Lily Malone’s book doesn’t deal with bushfires at all, this cover gives me summer vibes. The cover looks picturesque and beautiful, a perfect place for a lazy summer picnic with wine and nibbles. The colours used however scream summer to me; the oranges and yellow tones bring to mind long, hot summer days and bushfires.

With her trademark fresh and funny tone, Lily Malone returns with a captivating new romance set in the heart of the Australian outback.

For Jaydah Tully, the country town of Chalk Hill has never felt like home. Home is a place to feel loved. Home is a place to feel safe. Jaydah’s home life is dark in ways the close-knit community could never imagine.

Jaydah knows that the man she loves has never understood her need for secrets. Brix is a Honeychurch, she’s a Tully – her family are Chalk Hill’s black sheep. It’s better for everyone if Brix stays away.

But Brix is a one-woman man, and when he returns to his home town to help his brother, the first person he sees is Jaydah. Independent. Private. Proud. When things are good between them they are really really good but all too soon they’re back in the old patterns, caught in the same argument: Her father. Her family. Her life that doesn’t include him.

Underneath her tough exterior, Jaydah is drowning. She has one chance to change everything. Is she brave enough to take the risk and let Brix in? Or will her father keep them apart forever?


Pick a book you’re likely to buy as a present.

The Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race by Rob Mundle.

For anyone who knows my family …  you know this is the ideal present for pretty much all of my immediate family. Every Christmas we spend boxing day lavishly snacking on seafood and treats, sipping a few cold ones and obsessively watching the race. I kid you not, I gasped when I saw this was coming out and did an internal happy dance.  I will be not so patiently waiting for my turn to read this one 🙂

The Sydney Hobart Yacht Race is the story of one of the world’s greatest sporting challenges.

In its 75th year, the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race has become an icon of Australia’s summer sport, ranking in public interest with such national events as the Melbourne Cup, the Australian Open tennis and the Boxing Day cricket test. No regular annual yachting event in the world attracts such huge media coverage as does the start on Sydney Harbour.

The Sydney Hobart Yacht Race: A biography of a sporting icon is the story of one of the world’s greatest sporting challenges, an event where men and women from all walks of life are inspired and challenged by the beauty and power of nature.

The 628-nautical mile course is often described as the most gruelling long ocean race in the world, a challenge to everyone who takes part. A team effort as much as a personal challenge where one mistake can lead to defeat, while success can deliver national and international acclaim.

Bestselling author Rob Mundle has competed in the race on three occasions and reported on it for both newspapers and television for more than fifty years. The pinnacle of his many writing achievements is the international bestselling book Fatal Storm, the powerful story of the tragic 1998 Sydney Hobart race.

Pick a festive themed book.

The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily by Rachel Conn and David Levithan.

I’ve been promising Amy from Lost in A Good Book for years that I would read this book, and I swear 2019 is going to be its year! It’s super festive with its ugly sweaters, Christmas tree and 12 Days of Christmas reference/retelling. I’m super pumped to read this one.

Pick a book you can curl up with by the fireplace.

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

As mentioned above this festive season I won’t be curling up in front of a fireplace, but rather relaxing alongside my pool or heading to the beach. This book seems like the perfect summery and feel-good read.

Olive is always unlucky: in her career, in love, in…well, everything. Her identical twin sister Ami, on the other hand, is probably the luckiest person in the world. Her meet-cute with her fiancé is something out of a romantic comedy (gag) and she’s managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a series of Internet contests (double gag). Worst of all, she’s forcing Olive to spend the day with her sworn enemy, Ethan, who just happens to be the best man.

Olive braces herself to get through 24 hours of wedding hell before she can return to her comfortable, unlucky life. But when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning from eating bad shellfish, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. And now there’s an all-expenses-paid honeymoon in Hawaii up for grabs.

Putting their mutual hatred aside for the sake of a free vacation, Olive and Ethan head for paradise, determined to avoid each other at all costs. But when Olive runs into her future boss, the little white lie she tells him is suddenly at risk to become a whole lot bigger. She and Ethan now have to pretend to be loving newlyweds, and her luck seems worse than ever. But the weird thing is that she doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, she feels kind of… lucky.

Pick a book you want to read over the festive period.

The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand.

This is another one of those Christmas books I have been telling myself for years that I will read, and I will do so this year!

Holly Chase has the job of saving souls, but it is her own that she realizes needs examining.
On Christmas Eve five years ago, Holly was visited by three ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she’d become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways.
She didn’t.
And then she died.
Now she’s stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge-as the latest Ghost of Christmas Past.
Every year, they save another miserly grouch. Every year, Holly stays frozen at seventeen while her family and friends go on living without her. So far, Holly’s afterlife has been miserable.
But this year, everything is about to change…


Pick a book that’s so good it gives you chills.

This is a five-way tie for me. Each of these books has left me reacting viscerally.


Pick a book going on your Christmas wishlist.

Return to Stringyback Creek by Karly Lane

I adore everything about this author, so this book is definitely on my Christmas wishlist.

When top-flight journalists Hadley Callahan and Mitch Samuals married two years ago, theirs had been declared the celebrity wedding of the year. But, now, Hadley unexpectedly returns to Stringybark Creek alone to tell her parents one major piece of news while determinedly hiding another even more explosive secret.

Hadley’s big society wedding had killed any hopes that Oliver Dawson, the Callahans’ neighbour and Griff Callahan’s best friend, had nurtured since his teenage years when Hadley was his best friend’s little sister and thus out-of-bounds.

While Hadley’s in town, the shocking suicide of one of their old school friends brings them together as they mourn their loss. Hadley and Ollie begin a campaign to raise awareness of rural mental health, both wanting to make a difference.

With Mitch putting pressure on Hadley to keep quiet, and the secret she’s keeping causing her great anguish, Hadley’s feelings for Ollie take her by surprise. But her life is so messed up at the moment – what future could they possibly have together?

Return to Stringybark Creek concludes the Callahan family trilogy with a delightfully irresistible story of loyalty, hope and the importance of staying true to yourself.

3 thoughts on “Blogmas Day 2: Christmas Cracker Book Tag

    • Jess says:

      Hey Amy,
      I knew you would be excited by that one. In truth, I tried to start it a week or two ago, only to discover that ‘The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily’ IS the sequel and I need to read book one first (book two doesn’t make sense without it!). I’ve now got book one on request at the library and I’m hoping it comes in ASAP so I can get to the Twelve days this year!

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