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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wish fulfillment
I think if I could have given this book 4.5 stars, I would have done so, because it really was a fantastically enjoyable book. However, as Jenny's note points out, this book started out because everyone wanted to find out what happened next and the storyline bears a lot of signs of building castles in the air. Some of the plot-lines really are ridiculous and could only...
Published 14 months ago by Mynnie

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not quite as expected...
Review: I loved Rosie Hopkin's Sweetshop of Dreams, it was one of the best books that I read last year and so I had very high expectations for this one. Unfortunately my expectations were not really met. I loved revisiting the characters and the settings, especially Lillian but this books had a completely different feel for me to the last book and that just made it a bit...
Published 5 months ago by Fabulous Book Fiend


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5.0 out of 5 stars A Sweet treat for Christmas!, 15 Feb. 2014
By 
Chloe S "Chick Lit Chloe" (Berkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Rosie Hopkins loves working in sweet shop in the village Lipton, even more so now the festive season is well and truly on its way. Rosie is looking forward to the first one in her new home, with new boyfriend Stephen and her aunt too. As an extra treat, Rosie's mum and other family is flying in from Australia to spend the season with her... she's just got to break it to Stephen first! As the village is gearing up for Christmas, a tragedy strikes and the residents are forced to pull together to help each other through the hard times. Rosie is worried that it might mean the end for the plans she had made for the future - is her happy ending definitely in Lipton??

You don't need to have read the first book in this series to enjoy this book, although it of course helps knowing the back story, especially of Rosie getting the shop and her relationship with Stephen too. However, everything is quite well explained so its easy to enjoy this as a stand alone novel too, especially as a festive treat. Things have moved along slightly since the previous book, Stephen is now starting work as a school teacher at the local school, Rosie's shop is becoming a roaring success, and they are living together, quite happily plodding along in their relationship, taking things slowly. I enjoyed the twists and turns that their relationship took as this book progressed, the things they came up against felt very realistic, and it was emotional to read at times, with Rosie desperately trying to work out the right thing to do.

For me, the setting of Lipton was perfect. With it's wintery snowy setting and festive feel, it seems perfect and exactly the sort of place you want to be as Christmas approaches. It's a quaint, small village with close friends and neighbours and I really enjoyed this aspect of the book. Rosie was a great main character again, and it was lovely getting back into step with her narrative, and I loved Stephen as much as I had last time. They make such a good couple, I was really hoping that they would end up with a happy ending! I really enjoyed Rosie's aunt Lilian's story in this book though, it was very emotional and totally unexpected, it was so beautifully written and touching to read, it was very compulsive once I got reading!

Rosie's family make an amusing addition to the book, and it was fun seeing Rosie with her own family for a change, rather than just making new friends in the village. The tragedy that happens shocked me quite a lot, I hadn't expected it at all and Colgan really did the scenes justice. It felt so real as I was reading, I couldn't put the book down and was desperate to find out what was going to happen next. It was totally gripping! Everything about this novel was absolutely brilliant. While the sweet shop took a little more a back seat in this book, the other stories going on around it in Lipton were amazingly written - Colgan puts across the emotion and tension in these scenes so well. I loved everything about this book, it was a complete joy to read and I hope it isn't the last we see of Rosie and her beautiful sweetshop!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Still charming and sweet but more gripping and heart-wrenching than the first novel, 30 Dec. 2013
I am a big fan of the charming novels by author Jenny Colgan which are not only filled with wonderfully engaging stories but oftentimes also with delectable recipes for sweet treats. And after getting the opportunity to hear Jenny read from her latest Rosie Hopkins novel at a literary event last month, I became even more excited to get my hands on this installment in the series (or what I hope will become a series, at least).

Christmas at Rosie Hopkins' Sweetshop is, predictably, a continuation of the story as found within the pages of Welcome to Rosie Hopkins' Sweetshop of Dreams. Rosie and Stephen unofficially live together while Rosie still manages her aunt's sweetshop in the town of Lipton and Stephen takes up the post of a teacher at the local school. While they are very happy together, their different backgrounds and difficult mothers often make it a trial to make it through the day without a healthy argument or two. But that's okay, as it makes their household very lively and not any less loving as a result.

While Rosie is the main character within the novel and I love her to pieces, it were actually the stories of Lilian and Edison this time around that particularly appealed to me and tugged on my heartstrings. I won't go into detail as that may spoil it for those who have yet to pick up the novel, but I can say that on several occasions a heavy lump formed in my throat as I was reading about their emotional and physical struggles. They had to deal with some heartbreaking situations which were portrayed incredibly realistic by the author and made me feel very sorry for them. While I certainly wished things would've gone differently, in Lilian's case in particular, it did make for some page-turning reading.

It wasn't all doom and gloom though and I loved having the opportunity to read more about Rosie and Stephen, who are two characters I've grown very fond of after devouring the first novel. The addition of Rosie's extended family made for some particularly hilarious situations this time around and the Christmas setting added some suitably festive sparkle to the already idyllic village of Lipton.

More gripping and heart-wrenching than the first novel, Christmas at Rosie Hopkins' Sweetshop is a still charming and heartfelt continuation of the story, which will have readers fall even more in love with the picturesque town of Lipton and its wonderful inhabitants, some of whom deservingly so get a little more of a chance to shine this time around, Edison, Tina and Moray stood out to me in particular.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Christmas at Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop, 15 Dec. 2013
I really enjoyed this book. It is a sweet, cosy read which is just perfect for the run-up to the Christmas celebrations. Set in a picturesque village featuring small schools, rolling hills and corner shops. The location screams ideal Winter destination, even with the snowy disruptions. I think that the Rosie Hopkins series are my favourite Jenny Colgan books because it reminds me of my Pembrokeshire home, the positives (the community, the countryside) and the negatives (the gossip, the public transport...or lack of it!).

After reading Welcome to Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop of Dreams, the first installation of Rosie's adventures, I felt that everything had been rounded up nicely at the end of the story. I was a little bit worried that this book had been written purely as a Christmas follow on and that it wouldn't have much of a story line. I imagine that it would have been easy for it to become an 'everything's-great-and-wonderful-merry-Christmas-to-all' sort of book. Thankfully, I was wrong.

I won't give too much away but when the blurb says 'a tradgedy' they don't just mean that Rosie runs out of candy canes on Christmas Eve! I had to read that chapter twice because I'd read it so quickly the first time round, too worried about what was going on and what was going to happen. Like Jenny's other cake, chocolate and sweet themed novels there are some wonderful recipies which I'm very much looking forward to trying out over the holidays. Recipes include fudge, candied peanuts and more which are perfect for Christmas time. As always, there was a strong humour throughout the book. There were lots of laugh out loud moments which earned me a few funny looks in the coffee shop but I really enjoy Jenny's humour and it has the ability to really lift some despairing parts of the story.

Yes, there were sweet, heart warming, tear-in-your-eye moments. Surely that's why we read Christmas stories? That's true for me anyway. But there were heart wrenching, worrying moments too. This is a brilliant book in it's own right, with a great storyline. Not a saccharine, sickly Christmas cringe-fest at all. This is another book which I'll be plucking from the shelf on December 1st for many years to come.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fun, festive read that's full of heart, 2 Dec. 2013
Rosie Hopkins has been running the sweet shop in Lipton for a year now but her business is threatened after an accident in the village. Christmas should be a time of joy but Rosie can't relax and enjoy herself when she is worried about the shop, coupled with the stress of her chaotic family descending upon her from Australia. Rosie should be able to talk to her boyfriend, Stephen but he's having problems of his own and instead of the festive season bringing them together, it seems to be driving them apart.

Christmas at Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop is a follow up of Jenny Colgan's previous novel, Welcome To Rosie Hopkins' Sweetshop of Dreams. I haven't read the previous book so I was a little concerned I wouldn't be able to keep up with everything that was going on, but it wasn't an issue at all. Everything that needed to be explained was, without going into masses of back story and slowing the pace.

I loved the setting of Lipton, a little snowy village where everybody knows everybody else's business, particularly Rosie's shop with its array of treats, both old and new. But while Lipton may be a tiny village, a lot of drama ensues this particular Christmas. There is a lot going on within the book, but none of the stories seem to overshadow the others and I enjoyed every aspect. Rosie is a wonderful character and I loved the teasing nature of her relationship with Stephen, so it was a shame when they stopped communicating properly and their relationship began to suffer. They make such a great couple that I wanted them to realise what was happening and fix it before it was too late.

As well as Rosie, there are many great characters in Christmas at Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop, from Rosie's great-aunt Lilian to her Australian family and little Edison, a regular customer at the sweet shop. The characters and the book as a whole are fun and light-hearted, but there are some touching moments too. I thought the book was a fantastic festive read, full of fun and laughter as well as heart.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Christmas, Sweets, books rolled into one = HEAVEN!!, 12 Nov. 2013
By 
realovesbooks (South east London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
I absolutely adored Welcome to Rosie Hopkins Sweet Shop, so when I heard Jenny Colgan was not only bringing out a sequel to this book, but it was also going to be a Christmas book, well I felt like all my Christmases had come along at once!

Rosie is so excited about spending Christmas in little Lipton and to top it all off her family are all coming over from Australia to join her. The Sweetshop is dripping with Christmas treats and a perfect snowy scene creates the perfect Christmas setting but nothing is ever quiet and trouble free in Lipton as they are all about to find out.

I am so happy to be reunited with this quirky group of characters. I remembered them all so well but I warmed to them even more in this book as they are so friendly and familiar. Rosie has to be one of my all-time favourite characters, but then that could be the envy of her owning her own sweetshop!

Although the sweet shop is still a part of the storyline, it has moved on to focus more on relationships, the community and a hell of a lot of trouble in this book, but there are still some mouth-watering descriptions of the confectionary so don't threat!

This is a sequel and although it could be read as a standalone book, the first book is too good to miss and you just feel like you are returning to old friends when you start this book. The author does give a little summary of the previous book at the start of this book incase you did want to read this one straight away and it is also a great to refresh your memory to remind you who was who and what happened previously.

There is so much going on in this book without giving too much away all I will say is for such a small village there is a lot of heartache and tragedies. There was never a dull moment the storyline had everything you could wish for, a warm, cosy, entertaining read that was very eventful and had a lovely splash of romance. There were also a few pars in this book that really pulled at my heart strings.

I still do not feel that Jenny Colgan is finished with this set of characters yet so I am hopeful for another book. Go and treat your friends or loved ones to this for Christmas this year it will not disappoint!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Another Christmas cracker from Jenny Colgan, 29 Dec. 2013
By 
Sharon (Wiltshire) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Last year Jenny Colgan brought us Christmas at the Cupcake Cafe and now we have Christmas at Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop, a Christmas follow up to Welcome to Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop of Dreams.

Although it's stated that this book could be read as a standalone, and Jenny has given a summary at the front of the book about the previous book, I personally would still recommend that you read the first book beforehand so that you can get a feel of the characters and the village.

Rosie is settling into her new life in the sleepy village of Lipton with boyfriend Stephen where she loves running the old-fashioned sweet shop that she's taken over from her great-aunt Lillian whilst he's now teaching at the local primary school. But it looks like their quiet life is about to be disrupted with the arrival of her mum, brother and his family from Australia who have plans of their own regarding Rosie and a tragic event happens that has repercussions for the whole village.

Once again I was entertained as soon as I started reading and didn't want to put it down, it had everything I could have wished for and more - drama, heartache and romance. Having loved all of her books that I've read, I cannot wait to read Jenny Colgan's next book Little Beach Street Bakery which is due out in March plus I'm hoping that there'll be another Christmas follow up next year and, if so, I wonder which book will it be?
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome back to Lipton, 9 Nov. 2013
By 
Miss Jenny Bateman "Jenny B" (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Warning- this review will contain spoilers.

I only discovered Jenny Colgan in the last year or two and upon reading my first book of hers 'Christmas at the cupcake cafe' I fell quite utterly in love. Her style is both witty and accessible and her characters feel like real people, many of whom you wish you could meet. I took it upon myself to read her entire back catalogue (I'm still working through it) and whilst I thoroughly enjoyed all of the books I read, I found myself particularly attached to Rosie Hopkins and her sweetshop. Rosie was someone I could see myself wanting to be friends with, and her great aunt's tale of lost love broke my heart. So I was absolutely thrilled when I contacted Jenny on Twitter and she told me she had just finished a Christmas sequel! It is not often I buy a book the day of publication but I made a beeline for this one.
The story is set, of course around Christmas in Lipton. The sweetshop is ticking along nicely, Rosie and Stephen are now a happy couple and Rosie is still butting heads with Lady Lipton. But then a tragedy tears through the town that threatens not just Rosie's life in the village, but the very village itself.
It was everything I hoped it would be and more. Colgan writes Christmas in the way that Richard Curtis films it- it's warm, and inviting and funny and cosy. However there is also heartbreak, as ever. I often find myself in tears at her books and the closure of the Lilian and Henry storyline absolutely smashed my heart. I ended up in that situation where you have to take several deep breaths to try and catch your huge gulping tears and not get too overwhelmed. I failed miserably.
The ending, which I won't spoil- left me feeling as though I had been wrapped up in a huge soft jumper with a mug of hot chocolate. Jenny Colgan doesn't just write stories, she creates worlds that you want to be a part of. Getting to visit with Rosie again was an absolute pleasure and I couldn't fault it. In fact I'm wondering how easy it would be to persuade Colgan to make it a trilogy!
5 out of 5.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, 25 Nov. 2013
By 
T. S. Dorr (London UK) - See all my reviews
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I loved the original Rosie Hopkins sweetshop of dreams, so it was really lovely to "meet" up with all our old friends in this beautiful Christmas book.

I always look forward to reading jenny's books and this one certainly doesn't disappoint, it is festive, fun, poignant and a little sad in parts, but full of Christmas spirit and love.

I can recommend this highly and many other of Jenny's books such as the cupcake cafe books and the loveliest chocolate shop in Paris.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Thank goodness there is a sequel!, 22 Dec. 2014
By 
Jennywren (Horsham, Sussex) - See all my reviews
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I adore this series of books! I loved the first book in this series so much, and as usual when a good book finishes you feel a bit sad. They end on a high point and that's it, but you want to know more. Such was the case with the first Rosie Hopkins book, so I was delighted to find not only a sequel, but one with a Christmas theme that I could read at Christmas: sheer bliss! It didn't disappoint and I really loved it, and all the characters. Yet again, a little bereft at the end and on the hunt for a similar theme for another seasonal read, only to find that the unbelievable has happened and there is a third! Looking forward to finding out what happens to Rosie and Stephen. Might have to ration this one, but there again I have the Christmas sequel to the cupcake cafe wait in in the wings too. What more could you wish for? Love Jenny Colgan's books.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Despite the London-bashing a simple, an easy, fun read, 21 Jan. 2015
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Mixed feelings but this is a book to read if you want a feel-good, simple, predictable quick read. I really enjoyed a previous Rosie Hopkins book, but this seems rushed and very silly in parts. As this is the second book (I think) there are many, many references to the previous book which are just too long-winded. I suppose the author felt them necessary as a reminder (there is one section where the catch-up is about a paragraph long and there are no full stops). She also makes up silly words which is a very, very annoying.

For me, the constant negative remarks about London were unnecessary (there were just too many for my liking and it gave the impression the author just hates the place: characters remark on; schools with concrete playgrounds and no blades of grass (!), London thugs, sweaty hot tubes and buses, drive-by shootings, flats that are little boxes and an empty house which, had it been in London 'would be full of graffiti & squatters' and so on and so on).

Anyway despite my moans it was a fun, quick, easy, read,
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