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Christmas Party Day Four Mandy Baggot

Welcome Mandy to the party. I thought we’d try something different today and go for a question and answer session.

1. Have you ever had a non-traditional Christmas dinner? What did you have?

I can’t remember having had a non-traditional Christmas dinner. I love the turkey feast! I usually add mashed potatoes as well as roast potatoes – I am a total mash addict!

2. What was the most fun activity you’ve done at Christmas?

At some point over Christmas the family get out a game called Taboo. It involves you getting a word to describe to your team with five words listed below that you’re not allowed to say or use to help with your description. I’m quite good at this game but it’s usually boys against girls, I’m quite competitive and they always cheat! It is fun though!

3. What was the best gift you ever received at Christmas?

That’s a really hard question! Mr Big got me a lovely ring one year that turned into my engagement ring! But it’s probably the trip to Disneyland Paris my parents-in-law gave us a couple of years ago. We knew it was coming but the looks on my girls’ faces when they knew they were going was magical.

4. What was the worst gift you ever received at Christmas?

I can’t admit this. I get it every year and I don’t like them and it’s too late to say anything now so I just take them and give them to someone else. It’s a standing joke in our house!

5. What do you do with gifts you hate?

Give them to others I know will like them! My daughters’ school has had a lot of my unwanted presents for raffles!

6. What is your favourite Christmas music or song?

Jona Lewie – Stop the Cavalry. That brass band gets me every time!

7. What do you like best about Christmas?

Having my husband, Mr Big, at home for a few extra days!

Mandy’s latest read landed on my kindle yesterday which is causing all sorts of problems. I need to clean house, work, cook, shop and all I want to do is hide in the cupboard under the stairs a la Harry and read. 

Book Blurb

Book allure Ava and her best friend Debs arrive in Paris just as the snow starts to fall. The Eiffel Tower glitters gold, but all Ava can think about is Leo, her no-good, cheating ex.

You can find more about Mandy on her author’s page which links with her books

About the author

Mandy Baggot is an award-winning romance writer represented by The Kate Nash Literary Agency.

The winner of the Innovation in Romantic Fiction award at the UK’s Festival of Romance, her romantic comedy novel, One Wish in Manhattan, was also shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists’ Association Romantic Comedy Novel of the Year award in 2016.

Mandy loves the Greek island of Corfu, white wine, country music and handbags. Also a singer, she has taken part in ITV1’s Who Dares Sings and The X-Factor.

Mandy is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and the Society of Authors and lives near Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK with her husband and two daughters.

Visit Mandy’s website at

Latest release: One Christmas in Paris

Amazon UK:

Amazon US:



Tomorrow we have Maxine Moorey popping by.

Maxine Maxine has wanted to be a writer for as long as she can remember and in August 2015, her dream was realised when she won  Harper Collins/Carina UK’s ‘Write Christmas’ competition with her romantic comedy, ‘Winter’s  Fairytale’

About me

I’ve been writing for 8 years now, one of those people that always wanted to write a book and one day I brought a notepad and pen into work and wrote my first book by long hand over my coffee breaks. People say you never publish your first book so I wrote my second before going back to publish my first ‘Boy Brainy.’

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Christmas Party kicking off with James Hartley

Before I welcome James to the hot seat (can’t wait to read his story) here’s a competition reminder.

Can you name these delightful people. You’ve read their books but… there will be a prize (more than one, part of it will be edible, probably chocolate 😆) 👍🏻 To enter click here

Christmas Story by James Hartley

I almost met Father Christmas once.
It was about ten years ago, before my wife and I had children, when we were visiting my brother-in-law in Finland. We took one of the most luxurious overnight trains I´ve ever been on – our cabin even had a shower – from Helsinki to Rovaniemi, which was just inside the Arctic Circle. Suddenly the maps on the walls in the museums were drawn as if looking down at the earth from above instead of from somewhere in line with the equator: we were in Sami land.

A bus with chained wheels took us further north, squealing and skidding up to Father Christmas´ Post Office which was festooned with signposts pointing out distances south. We posted the letters we´d promised to send and wandered out into the pines and softly falling snow for a look about. After a while we saw a wooden building nestling beneath the high trees and, seemingly alone, approached the big oak door slowly.

I was first.

Peeping in I could see a large empty room, wooden floorboards, and a roaring fire at the far end. In front of the fire was a very big man in a red and white uniform, facing away from me, picking something up from a sack at his feet. Instead of going in and speaking to him, I backed down the steps and shook my head. My wife, sneaking up after me, peered through the crack in the door but also got the shivers.

We crunched back through the snow to the Post Office and bus stop without once looking back.

Link to short story here

The Author

James was born on the Wirral, England, in 1973 on a rainy Thursday. He shares his birthday with Bono, Sid Vicious and two even nastier pieces of work, John Wilkes Booth and Mark David Chapman.

His mother was a hairdresser with her own business and his father worked in a local refinery which pours filth into the sky over the Mersey to this day. They married young and James was their first child. He has two younger brothers and a still-expanding family in the area. As an Everton fan he suffered years of Liverpool success throughout the seventies and was thrilled when his father took a job in Singapore and the family moved lock, stock and two smoking barrels to Asia.

He spent five fine years growing up in the city state before returning to the rain, storms, comprehensive schools and desolate beauty of the Scottish east coast. Later years took he and his family to baking hot Muscat, in Oman, and a Syria that has since been bombed off the surface of the planet.

For more about James here’s the link to his Amazon page

Later today I have a surprise guest popping in for afternoon as it’s book launch day for the delightful Darcie Boleyn and she’s going to tell us about her book inspiration – more later.

Tomorrow it’s Sue Moorscroft’s turn to join the party  have you read her latest yet? It’s one of my top 10 books of 2016 

Finally a little reminder. Have you caught up with Sarah Morgan’s latest?

I was in WH Smith and I was delighted to see it right up there sharing the limelight. I read and reviewed this recently and this will be in my top 10 reads for 2016 along with Sue’s. Here’s the Link

About me

I’m a book lover first, falling into writing by accident. I love all books and read cross genre with usually 2-3 book on the go at any one time getting through about 300 a year. Being a NetGalley reviewer is essential to my wallet! I’m working on my sixth novel.