Looking for a great chick lit novel to curl up with this winter? Look no further than Winter Wonderland by Belinda Jones! Canadians especially will delight in this cute romance, which is set in Quebec City during the Winter Carnival (for those of you unfamiliar with the Winter Carnival, check out the video below)! The novel focuses on Krista, a travel journalist from England who is determined to experience everything that Quebec has to throw at her. Between sleeping in the ice palace, to flirting with Bonhomme, to trying poutine and beaver tails for the first time, Krista is overwhelmed by the sights, sounds, and tastes that the Winter Carnival has to offer. When she meets Jaques, a rugged dog sledder, Krista can’t help but fall in love with Quebec just a little bit more. Full of humour and fun, Winter Wonderland had me smiling the entire way through!
Hands down my favourite thing about Winter Wonderland was the fact that the author decided to set this book in Canada! The publishing industry is so saturated with novels set in the US that it was refreshing to read about my own country for once! My second favourite thing about Winter Wonderland was that the author took so many details about the actual city and integrated them into the book seamlessly! Having been to Quebec City twice in my life, I kept getting giddy and excited whenever she mentioned a place or attraction that I remember having visited and experienced myself. My biggest giddy filled moment came when the main character had lunch at a tiny cafe that my friends and I ate at about ten years ago called Le Cochon Dingue (The Crazy Pig)! In fact, I was so giddy I actually ran off in search of my photo albums to find some of the pictures that I had taken there!
Another giddy moment came with this description of the snow sculptures at the Winter Carnival:
Annique tells me that the winner a few years back was a pair of hands twiddling a Rubik’s Cube, but her favourite was Moby Dick – an open book with a harpoonist rising from the left side and a whale disappearing into the right, pages flaring like waves. Mind-boggling.
Sound familiar? Those of you who are like me and kill time browsing through Tumblr and Pintrist for hours on end would probably recognize the description of this photo below in a heartbeat! See what I mean about the author using real details?! It’s the little things like this that make Winter Wonderland so much fun to read! It felt like I was visiting Quebec all over again! In fact, I have the sudden urge to just jump on a train and visit Quebec right now (although sadly the Winter Carnival just ended this past Sunday).
All in all, whether you’ve visited Quebec City or not, Winter Wonderland is a fun read to help chase away those winter blues. Krista’s character was cute and sweet, and I loved experiencing the Winter Carnival through her eyes. I’m definitely excited to read Belinda Jones’s next book, The Travelling Tea Shop, which will focus on Krista’s best friend Laurie as she travels around New England. My fingers are still crossed though that Jones will decide to set another of her books somewhere in Canada!
Rating: 4 Stars