Lindsey Kelk©Philippa Gedge 2015
You're probably familiar with Lindsey's incredibly popular I Heart... series, and in recent years she's started to branch out from Angela, Alex and Jenny Lopez to write novels about a whole new cast of characters, including the stand-alone Always the Bridesmaid and the AMAZING About a Girl series (which, even though it was very hard to achieve, is even more fabulous than the I Heart... books are). And after the second part in that series, What a Girl Wants, was released in 2014, we're back with Tess and the gang for A Girl's Best Friend this Christmas!
Will the book persuade me to move from #TeamNick to #TeamCharlie? I've started reading it this morning and am still all heart-shaped eyes over Nick, but we'll see if this changes over the course of the third novel...
To celebrate the release of A Girl's Best Friend this week (Thursday, 5 November you guys – better get to the shops quick in the morning or pre-order your copy now!) Lindsey has written a host of guest posts for the blog tour, which will be sprinkled among reviews and other festive content for the book. She stopped by Page to Stage Reviews with her Christmas top 5, which I'm delighted to share with you below.
Lindsey Kelk's Top 5 Christmas Traditions
Boots Christmas Catalogue
I’ve always been the kind of girl to take Christmas very seriously. When I was little, the first draft of my Christmas list, pulled together from assorted Christmas catalogues, was issued to my mother in early November. My brother’s birthday is November 5th so we were banned from any Christmas discussion until that was out of the way, but to me Christmas officially started as soon as the Boots Christmas catalogue was in stores. Now I live in the States, someone usually sends one over. I have to say, this year’s is a bit disappointing but that doesn’t mean I didn’t spend a good hour flicking through the pages and mentally circling all the goodies I had my eye on. I mean, things I wanted to buy for other people. I mean… no, I didn’t.
My mum used to work in a toy shop. I’ll let that settle for a moment. Sadly, she didn’t start until I was almost all toy’d out and, to make matters worse, when I was eleven until about fourteen, she used to make me dress up as an elf and walk around town with my step-dad dressed as Father Christmas. I say ‘make me’ and clearly what I mean is ‘I begged her to let me’. I may have been something of an attention seeker.
Christmas starts earlier in toy shops than it does anywhere else in the world and with the season of goodwill, comes the playlist of dreams. Since the nineties, I’ve been curating my own Christmas compilation which goes on steady rotation on my iPhone from around, um, now. There’s Mariah, there’s Wham! and most importantly, there’s Christmas Wrapping by The Waitresses. Happy, happy days.
Decorating on December 1st
This is another one some people have considered ‘jumping the gun’ but I love to decorate my house as early as humanly possible. In the UK, this was December 1st but here in the US, it’s somewhat acceptable to put your tree up the day after thanksgiving. This allows me up to a whole week of extra tree! And a tree trimming party! And this is why I can never ever move back to the UK.
I first got the recipe for my gingerbread cookies from a supermarket flyer, back when I was living in Worcester Park, just outside Wimbledon. They were big on all the essential criteria – golden syrup, butter, eggs and sugar. What’s not to love? They’re also incredibly easy to make which doesn’t hurt. I included the recipe in I Heart Christmas because to me, nothing says Christmas Time quite like a freshly baked tray of Gingerbread Men. And nothing says indigestion quite like the way I feel after I’ve eaten said tray full of gingerbread men.
Shockingly, many of my traditions centre around food but this is one of the most important. Every year when we were kids, my brother and I would get a Terry’s Chocolate Orange from our mum and every year, we would open it right away, whack it on the corner of the hearth and scoff as much of it as humanly possible. Until the year I ate almost the entire thing and threw up. Before breakfast. I don’t think I’ve ever been so proud. They do sell them here in the US but they don’t taste the same so this is always the first thing I stock up on if I’m spending Christmas in America. A girl’s got to do what a girl’s got to do.
Thanks so much Lindsey, for sharing this great list!
About A Girl's Best Friend
The third novel in the About a Girl series is out on Thursday and you guys can pre-order your copy from Foyles or your own preferred retailer now!
Synopsis: First Tess was a girl with a plan.
Then she was a girl with a dream.
Now she’s a girl who’s come back to earth with a bump.
When the opportunity arises to join her best friend, Amy, in New York for Christmas, Tess jumps at the chance. The only fly in ointment is that Nick, the man who broke her heart, lives there. And Charlie, the man she turned down, has just started talking to her again. And she has just four days to take a photo for a competition that could save her career.
But aside from that, everything is going to be great: it’ll be the best Christmas ever. Won’t it?
Follow the Blog Tour
Today is the first day in the A Girl's Best Friend blog tour, so make sure you check out the other stops in the next few weeks too for more guests posts, reviews and other exciting content!