Review by Veronica

‘…by the…’ I said, grimacing at Tom.

‘Fibro fog?’ he asked.

I frowned. ‘How did you know about that?’

‘I did some research online after you were diagnosed.’

‘You did?’

‘I’d never heard of fibromyalgia and I wanted to understand it.’

I stared at him for a moment. What a thoughtful thing to do.

Christmas at the Cat Café is a feel-good romance that will take you on an emotional roller coaster ride. 

It had always been Tabby’s dream to work with cats and an inheritance from her beloved nanna has finally made that a reality. Idyllic Castle Street in Whitsborough Bay couldn’t be a better place for pastry chef Tabby to open a cat café with her boyfriend, Leon. But when Leon leaves her in the lurch, the pressure mounts for Tabby. With Christmas fast approaching, she has to open the café on her own – a daunting prospect, especially when she’s been hiding her health issues from the ones she loves. Faced with local resistance to the café – and somebody seemingly determined that she won’t succeed – Tabby will need her friends, family and cats more than ever to recover her broken Christmas spirit and pull together for a Christmas miracle. Will the cat café bring the festive joy to Castle Street as Tabby had hoped or will it be a cat-astrophe? And can the magic of Christmas on Castle Street mend Tabby’s broken heart as well as her business?  

This book is purr-fect for any bookworm who is obsessed or loves cats. If you aren’t a fan of cats or books that feature animals, then this book might be a pass for you because Tabby’s cats play a central role in the story. Christmas at the Cat Café is a more serious and heartfelt story. This book isn’t really a lighthearted and fluffy read. And even though I was expecting something a bit more lighthearted, I ended up falling in love with the emotional story that Jessica created. Jessica shines a light on what it is like for someone to live with Fibromyalgia and how it can affect every aspect of their lives. There are some darker and emotional moments in this book when Tabby just feels overwhelmed with the chronic pain she is living with. I thought Jessica did a masterful job of showing readers what it’s like for someone to live with Fibromyalgia. She also shows how important it is for those suffering from Fibromyalgia to have a great support system around them. I loved how Tabby’s family and friends were there for her. They never underplayed her illness as something that she is exaggerating. Their conditional support and understanding just made my heart melt.     

This book is a love letter to those cat lovers out there. I felt this instant connection with Tabby because of her love for her furry friends. Tabby’s interaction with her furry babies reminded me of my relationship with Minnie (my cat). I loved the made-up conversations Tabby has with her cats and how she knows each cat has their distinct personality. As a reader, I also appreciated the cat guide at the beginning of the book, listening to all the cats that Tabby has living with her. It helped me keep track of who was who. 

The romance in this book is a sweet, friends-to-lovers love story. Tabby and Tommy just felt right together. I loved how understanding and supportive Tommy was. He cared for Tabby when she was having a bad day and never once made her feel like she was a burden because of her illness. Tommy learned about Fibromyalgia and how he could best support Tabby. When he offered to help wash her hair, my heart just swooned. I enjoyed those sweet moments between these two, and I wanted to keep reading because I needed to know when they would finally realize their feelings for each other. 

Christmas at the Cat Café is a heartfelt emotional story about finding out what truly makes you happy. 

Thank you, Rachel Random Resources and Boldwood Books, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.