Festive Q & A with Rebecca Raisin and book review.

If you're looking for a fabulously festive read then look no further than Rebecca Raisins 'Winter at Cedarwood Lodge.' With it's new release just last Friday, that sees all the stories together in one pretty packaging, we thought we would delve into the archives of our blog and share our reviews from each story with you today! Not only that, but at the bottom of this post you will find a Christmassy Q&A with Rebecca herself! We hope you enjoy and happy Monday! 

Celebrations and Confetti.

In book one we meet event planner Clio, who has just arrived back in her hometown after purchasing the very glamorous yet rundown Cedarwood Lodge. She has left behind a high profile wedding planning career in New York City, after a not so happy celebrity couple turned her into a media magnet for all the wrong reasons. It's safe to say she will never get another wedding in New York with the current stories in the papers, so she's back at home with the task of renovating the lodge. She always dreamed about what Cedarwood Lodge would look like back in it's former glory, ever since she ran around the grounds as a child with her best friend Micah. Now the lodge is hers, she's determined to make it into a success.
Rebecca Raisin always manages to pack so much warmth, coziness and heart into her stories, which just makes me so happy and content reading them. I can always picture Rebecca writing them with such passion and love, as it practically shines off the page. I really get a sense for how much she knows and cares about her characters, which makes me care about them too. In 'Celebrations and Confetti,' Clio is such a fun character to read about, she's hardworking, smart, girly and a dreamer. I wanted Cedarwood Lodge to be a success as much as she did with all the hard work and belief she was putting into it. I hated that Clio hadn't been treated well in New York especially because of silly celebrity scandals and people doing anything for a story, it seemed so unfair on Clio when she loved her job and was just doing what felt right. However, I liked that it meant she ended up back home because you could tell she still loved the place she grew up. I especially liked that even after six years, her and her best friend Micah never missed a beat and fell right back into their old routines and ways. Like the six years apart never even happened. I think those kinds of friendships are incredibly special, so that was another element to the story that put a smile on my face. 
I'm so excited for book two now as I can't wait to see how Clio's next event at Cedarwood goes and also if she hears anything from a certain blonde haired surfer guy...pretty please!!! 

Brides and Bouquets.

Eeek Brides and Bouquets is the second installment in Rebecca Raisin's Christmas series and after finishing this one it's safe to say I am a firm member of the Cedarwood community. Reading book 2 is like jumping back into line with those friends that you know are going to be with you for life, even if you don't see them all the time. After a brief time away after reading book 1, I was right back into the swing of things, happily enjoying the change in the weather at Cedarwood and getting excited by the upcoming event at Cedarwood lodge.

In Brides and Bouquets, we meet Clio as she is organizing the big bridal expo that is just around the corner. The lodge is completely decked out with Christmas decorations, all her vendors are confirmed and she is loving having her best friend Amory with her to help. Together they sure do make a dream team. There's only one person missing and Clio can't seem to get him out of her head. With so much to do at the lodge she can't be thinking about her love life and even when she actually ends up needing said someone after finding out the bridal expo could be ruined without him, it's still only because of the lodge's 'best interests.' When she isn't thinking about the lodge or her love life, Clio is still attempting to reconnect with her mother and uncover the truth about the past at Cedarwood lodge. Something happened that no one will tell her about and she's determined to find out what it was. 
Suspense...that's all I can say! I think I know exactly how Clio feels in this book, as I want to know what happened at Cedarwood Lodge all those years ago, just as badly as she does! Rebecca Raisin had me on the edge of my seat wanting more information, not just with the Lodge but also with our blonde surfer Kai. Will he and Clio ever admit that they like each other?!!! Ahh I want to know!! I loved being back at Cedarwood and hearing about all the goings on at the lodge. I wanted to be right there with Clio and Amory decorating, it sounded so magical. Plus it was snowing...snowing!! I can just picture the lodge in my mind now with the trees, the snow, the twinkling of the fairy lights and the abundance of decorations. I would book a trip there for every year in a heartbeat! 
In addition, I  love how Amory has stayed with Clio and that the two of them have this wonderful friendship of being there for each other and being able to confide in each other. We also get to meet Cruz, Amory's boyfriend in this book and let me tell you, he's a keeper for sure, I mean he cooks and not just cooks but cooks amazingly well and is helpful and sweet and romantic! Trust me when I say you will want to meet him! 

Midnight and Mistletoe.

So here it is, the final installment in Rebecca Raisin's delightful Christmas series. I can't quite believe that Christmas is over and that I have read all three of these books already. It feels like yesterday that we were singing around our apartment and announcing their release! My how time flies!

In book three 'Midnight and Mistletoe,' Clio is gearing up for Christmas with her family and friends, as well as looking forward to the new year and the bookings that have already started coming in for weddings at Cedarwood lodge. Before the weddings though, Clio has a big new years eve party to plan on short notice and she also has to see how Christmas goes with her Mum. Things are still a bit of a strain between them and now to top it all off, Clio is hiding the fact that Isla found the maze in the grounds of Cedarwood, that seems to upset her Mum so much. Not telling her doesn't feel right, but Clio doesn't want to ruin Christmas, so she keeps it to herself for the time being. At least she thinks that's the case, what she doesn't expect is for Isla to tell her Mum herself, in a burst of excitement about what she's found in the garden she keeps. How will Clio's Mum react? Is this going to push them further apart or can Clio finally help her Mum mend old wounds? If that wasn't enough on her plate, everyone at Cedarwood is happy and loved up apart from Clio. She's enjoying seeing so much romance in the air but while her and Kai have exchanged a few kisses here and there, she is still as confused as ever and doesn't know what to do. Can she finally tell him how she feels or will he leave after new year and she have left it too late?
This was a wonderful last installment from Rebecca Raisin's Cedarwood Lodge series. All of the individual stories I had been so eager to see come together did, in a very lovely and emotional way. I was happy to finally find out what had happened all those years ago at Cedarwood to make Clio's Mum so closed off and cold. It was a heartbreaking story but I was glad to see Clio able to help her Mum in small ways so that their relationship could move forward, as there really was so much love between the two of them.
I thoroughly enjoyed seeing each relationship in this story blossom, especially Armory and Cruz's. They both seemed so sweet together. I liked that they were taking baby steps to give each other a little of what they both wanted to make things work between them. As for Clio and Kai...will they, won't they? You have to read to find out!!
My favourite character I have to say would be Aunt Bessie, she was so vibrant and kind that I couldn't help but just love her. To me she was the positivity in the room, someone who just wanted everyone to be happy and eat her delicious doughnuts. Everything from her clothes, to her make up, to her talent for magnificent doughnut towers, had me smiling and wishing I could help her in the kitchen baking her famous treats! I couldn't promise half of the doughnuts would make it to the shop front though!
Rebecca Raisin has a knack for creating wonderful little towns full of amazing people who you just want to get to know and then never leave. Spending Christmas and New Year at Cedarwood lodge was a bookworm's paradise, which I'm certain you will enjoy all year round. I for one can not wait for Rebecca's next book. She is a book lovers dream! :)

Now, here's five festive questions with the wonderful Rebecca Raisin herself:

1.        If you were throwing a Party at Cedarwood Lodge, who would you invite?

       My bookish friends from around the world! Writers, bloggers, readers! We’d have a Gatsby themed party and dress like we were in the roaring 20s still with feather boas and lots of bling!

2.     What would be your ideal party to plan? birthday, Christmas, family get together?

Aside from the Gatsby party, I’d love to host Christmas at Cedarwood Lodge! It’s the perfect winter wonderland, and there’s so much do from ice-skating on the frozen lake, to snuggling up in the library in front of the fire. All of that would be made so much better with our chef Cruz whipping us up a feast over Christmas…

3.      Have you ever been to a cozy lodge like the one in your gorgeous book?

I actually haven’t as horribly sad as that is! It’s one of my dream destinations though! It sounds so utterly romantic to me, being holed up in a log cabin, in front of a nice warm fire while snow drifts down outside…

4. What has been your favourite festive read this year or one you are most looking forward to reading? 

We’ve been reading the book version of Home Alone with the kids, and as goofy as it sounds they absolutely love it! They’ve also had the movie on repeat for half on November already, so… I am fairly certain I know the book and the movie word for word!

5. What are your holiday must haves for any party?

A bottle of bubbly is a must! Some nice cheeses, olives, bread, fruit, for those last minute get togethers. A nice new party dress (Christmas time is summer in Australia) and a few extra gifts under the tree for those surprise visitors!

Have a lovely safe and happy Christmas and I hope you enjoy your time at Cedarwood Lodge…

Bec xxx

We hope you enjoyed this fantastically festive blog post and you check out this lovely series now! :) 


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