The last thing Harriet Westmoreland wants is Christmas away from home, particularly when skiing, snow, heights and freezing her backside off are on the menu. While her own family, together with her best friend Grace's, are soon whizzing down ridiculously high and scary mountains in the fashionable Italian resort of Cortina d'Ampezzo, Harriet is stuck in the remedial class on the nursery slopes unable, it seems, to remain vertical.
Tired of trying to stay upright in the dunces' class, Harriet decides to overcome her fear of heights and take her bruised body off to explore the refugios in the magnificent Dolomites above Cortina. And maybe catch a glance of George Clooney, rumoured to be in town... But what happens next triggers a totally unexpected avalanche of events which proves that, for friends Harriet and Grace and all their families, Christmas really is a time for little miracles...
The characters in this book really come together to make an entertaining story. There are quite a few characters but they have varied personalities so pretty quickly I could tell everyone apart. This group of people have been in previous books by Julie Houston so it might be worth reading her other books first. However I didn't feel like I was at a major disadvantage from not reading them.
The story moved quickly and kept my interest pretty much all the way through. There were a few twists and turns to the book that I didn't see coming. The setting was lovely with just the right amount of detail given. Just like Harriet I'm not a big fan of snow and heights so I felt for her character. Although to be honest it did actually sound quite fun! I loved all of the characters even with their flaws. They were well written and the writing was witty and charming.
Four and a half stars from me!
An Off-Piste Christmas is fun, festive and enjoyable!
Thank you to Julie Houston for my copy. This is my honest and unbiased opinion.