Book Review: Comfort and Joy by Cathy Bramley


Comfort and Joy: A feel-good Christmas short story full of romance and surprises! by [Bramley, Cathy]

Comfort and Joy by Cathy Bramley
Release Date: 13th October 2016
Publisher: Transworld
Buy: Kindle


It’s been a busy year for Verity Bloom at the Plumberry School of Comfort Food, but Christmas Eve is finally here. With delicious treats all wrapped up and the ingredients packed away, Verity is looking forward to a relaxing few days with her new boyfriend.

Good food, family and friends – it’s a simple recipe for true comfort and joy, and all Verity’s friends in the village are full of excitement about the holidays too.

But the weather has other plans in store… Relentless rain leads to a power cut that spells disaster for many of Plumberry’s residents. It’s starting to look like this year’s celebrations could be a total washout.

With dreams of a perfect Christmas dashed, will the last of the festive cheer be swept away in the downpour? Or can the cookery school create a Christmas miracle for everyone Verity holds dear?


Verity and Tom are looking forward to spending their first proper Christmas together. Verity has had a full on year with the opening of the Plumberry School of Comfort Food and Tom is relishing the opportunity for a break from his restaurant. Whilst Tom is dreaming of a quiet Christmas, Verity can’t help but wish that her family were here to celebrate the big day with her, rather than thousands of miles away in Canada.
However, it soon transpires that a peaceful Christmas is off the cards for the couple when disaster (and a shed load of rain) strikes Plumberry, causing floods, power cuts and all round chaos.
With no means of cooking their turkeys, and the flooding chaos causing families to be apart at Christmas this looks set to be the worse Christmas ever for the residents of Plumberry. But can their sense of community spirit prevail and make this possibly the best Christmas the village has ever seen after all?

I am a huge fan of Cathy Bramley’s books, so when I discovered she had written a Christmas novella I will freely admit that it felt as though Christmas had come early and left a lovely little gift on my Kindle for me.
Whilst The Plumberry School of Comfort Food is on my ever teetering To-Be-Read list, I needn’t have had any qualms about reading this gorgeous little novella as it makes complete sense as a standalone. (But if you have read the full length Plumberry novel then it goes without saying that you absolutely MUST read this. It will be like the icing on your Christmas cake…)
I adored the residents of Plumberry and feel as if they are old friends already. It’s a real talent that Cathy has of bringing her characters to life in such a short space of time that you feel as though you’ve known them for years. Needless to say I can’t wait to learn more about their stories in the full length Plumberry novel (I may have even made of a cheeky start on this novel already. After falling so deeply in love with these characters I just couldn’t wait. Sorry!) Plus I was incredibly excited about meeting Comfrey and Sage (sausage dogs!)…

I loved how so many different stories were intertwined and how they all slotted in nicely around the same theme – the importance of being with those you love at Christmas. Whether it’s someone who you see every day, or someone who is thousands of miles away, it’s so easy to forget the value of spending time with loved ones – even if you can’t be physically with them. Comfort and Joy is a story to warm your heart and give you that gooey, sparkly Christmas feeling that I love so much. It’s sweeter than a tub full of Quality Street with an entertaining storyline at it’s centre. The more of Cathy’s books I read, the more I grow to love her writing. She has really stood out this year in women’s fiction and I’m really excited about what she’s going to bring us next.

If you’re looking for a very Christmassy Christmas read then one-click this. It’s cosy, clever and packed full of comfort and joy…

A huge thank you to Transworld for the opportunity to read and review Comfort and Joy.


Cathy BramleyCathy Bramley is the author of the best-selling romantic comedies Ivy Lane, Appleby Farm, Wickham Hall, Conditional Love and The Plumberry School of Comfort Food. She lives in a Nottinghamshire village with her family and a dog.

Her recent career as a full-time writer of light-hearted, romantic fiction has come as somewhat of a lovely surprise after spending eighteen years running her own marketing agency. However, she has been always an avid reader, never without a book on the go and now thinks she may have found her dream job!

Cathy loves to hear from her readers. You can get in touch via her website Facebook page or on Twitter



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