Cover Image: Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos

Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos

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Member Reviews

I love that we went from "let's escape for a lovely and whimsical Christmas adventure" to "there's murder and hijinks occurring" in the blink of an eye. In my opinion, Christmas-themed books should be quick, cozy reads. This book was an exceptionally fast read, but I feel the storyline suffered from this. It felt a little dull at times and although I enjoyed the characters, I didn't feel drawn to them. Overall, a simple, quick holiday read.

I received an advance review copy for free through NetGalley, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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Oy Vey. I knew this was going to be a cheesy romance but it was just too much. It went beyond a holiday romance.

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I received a free copy of, Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos, by Wendy Day, from the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Sally and Pearl are great friends, they also have a mystery to solve, at Christmas time. I found this book to be dull, but I did enjoy the recipe at the back of the book.

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I want to thank Netgalley and the author for gifting me the ebook. This is from a book series. But I really enjoyed the main characters and the mystery plot. This was a very fast and easy read. Perfect for Christmas time.

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I wanted to enjoy this book but it is so poorly written that I had to force myself to finish it. A hard pass.

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Velma and Louise meets Christmas. The two very opinionated women come to save Christmas and solve the town troubles.

It was cute. Just not my cup of tea.

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Thank you Netgalley for this ARC for an exchange for an honest review.

Such great book, I enjoyed it.

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I loved this story! I read the first story in this series a few months ago and was so excited to jump back into this world. I adore the friendship between Sally and Pearl and the fun that they get into. The cozy mystery vibes mixed with Christmas were so much fun!

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⭐⭐ -- I love the cover of this one!

I wanted to love this one more than I did. I just found it super slow, repetitive, and I didn't connect with the characters. The sugar cookie recipe at the end sounded YUM though!

**ARC Via NetGalley**

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I want to start this review off by saying thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! This does not affect my opinions or review in any way.

I gave this 2/5 stars. I was hoping for a light, fun Christmas story and while it was definitely a light and quick read, I found the story to be a bland, and some of the writing to be a bit clunky and hard to get through.

The dialogue was almost unbearable to read, particularly from Pearl. She speaks almost solely in metaphors and ridiculous similes. Most of the things she says throughout the story gave me some form of second-hand embarrassment from how unrealistic it was. Some examples of this are: ‘lIf Old Creepy can flirt like a boy messin’ his knickers when he sees bras in the Sears catalog, you can sing your rap.”’ ‘“I don’t like to talk badly about anybody, but rich or not, that woman is one feather short of a duck,” Pearl said.’ This continues throughout the entire novel and did not make it any more enjoyable to read.

The author also seems to have a habit of telling instead of showing. This created some very clunky descriptions of the characters and settings. One example of this is: ‘Mike’s A-frame log cabin. There was a stone fireplace reaching to the ceiling and flanked by floor-to-ceiling windows looking over the valley. A large painting of a deer in the snow hung over the mantel. An overstuffed brown leather sectional with a red plaid wool blanket thrown over the arm sat in front of the hearth. The whole place had a masculine, lodge-like feel to it. It smelled like cedar and eucalyptus. Low, ambient Christmas music was playing from discreet, well-placed speakers, and in the corner next to the fireplace was the perfect spot for the tree.’ As you can see from this example, this description doesn’t leave any room for the characters to reveal small details about the cabin throughout the scene, which would’ve made the story flow a lot better!

The baking competition seemed to be thrown in almost as an afterthought and didn’t add much to the story. The main mystery surrounding Birdie was also extremely easy to predict and ended up being pretty anti-climactic.

I’m pretty disappointed that I didn’t enjoy the writing in this! All that being said, if you want something that is quick to read, you aren’t very critical with writing, and has a Christmas theme then this could possibly be what you’re looking for.

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This story was FUN. I very much enjoyed Pearl and Sally's characters. Sally seems like the sweetest sweetheart ever and Pearl is so dang spunky and witty. They balance each other perfectly and are quite enjoyable to read.
And I LOVE a good Christmas story. This was Christmas cheer, shenanigans, a snowy, small mountain town, and mystery all rolled into one cute, fun package.

I did not read their first book, but I feel like there were enough references to their Mexico trip that I could piece together an idea of what happened there. Separate from their trip in book one, I'm sure there was some character development. Since I didn't read the first I could be way off base here but at times in this book their character traits seemed disjointed. An example fresh in my mind is that apparently Pearl and Sally are in their 60s (which isn't mentioned until about halfway thru the book so I was blindly reading not knowing that specific about the characters) but Pearl said "they must be shook" at one point, I'm in my 30s and I don't even use "shook" (maybe it is explained in book one how she would be aware of this saying? Who knows), and Sally seems to act quite strange around Mike at times. Like, you should probably know by this point in your life if you like someone's company enough to keep them around or if you truly are okay with just being friends with them. But -- what do I know.
That being said their flirtation was cute to read.

Another bone I have to pick is the use of "older" person.... like, okay, are they older than Pearl and Sally, older than me, older than what? But then one particular character is described as being 40-something. That seems oddly specific when all the other age references are so vague, yet the specific-ish age of that character didn't seem to have any big impact on the story or outcome. (shrugging emoji)

Last and then I'll move on -- sometimes the detail was too much. Like, you can simply say the character got out of the vehicle... I didn't need "grabbed the handle to climb down on the running board and then the pavement" that is just one example and maybe I'm being too nitpicky. Oh well.. it usually wasn't enough to take me out of the story, just things I noticed that got my attention.

Thank you to the publisher via Netgalley for the early copy to read and review. Published this week!

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I absolutely loved this book. I felt like I have became friends with Pearl and Sally. I didn’t want the story to end. I hope this is not the end of their adventures. I even had to go back and read there first adventure and loved it just as much. I love the fun and quirkiness between the characters.

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Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos by Wendy Day opens with Sally and her best friend Pearl going off to sing karaoke the night before Thanksgiving. The next day, Sally learns that none of her children will be home for Christmas, she becomes depressed. Shortly there after, Sally receives a phone call, and Pearl and her are off to spend the Christmas holidays with their friend Mike in the idyllic Christmas town of McKenzie Bridge where a local woman claims someone is trying to murder her.

I'd like to thank NetGalley for the free copy of Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos by Wendy Day in exchange for my honest review. The title of the novel caught my attention as I wanted a book centered around Christmas to read. I was excited to learn that I had been approved to read this book.

When I requested to read this book, I didn't know it was the second book in a series, but that was okay as the author did a fabulous job at providing a quick synopsis of what happened in the previous book. I enjoyed most of the characters, especially Sally and Mike. I wasn't overly enthused with Pearl, but she did end up growing on me.

After not being in the Christmas spirit last year, I've been determined to have ALL the spirit this year, and Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos has helped me with my Christmas spirit. I hope it does the same for any one else that reads it.

This was a quick, fun, and entertaining read, and I look forward to reading the author's other books. I gave Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos by Wendy Day four out of five stars.

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When I last dropped in on Sally and Pearl, they were basking in the successful conclusion to a murder investigation in Mexico. This visit, I find they're roommates and watch true crime shows together. Sally, who loves all things Christmas, is dismayed her children and their families won't be able to visit this year, the first since her late husband's death, but Pearl, despite her take-it-or-leave-it attitude toward Christmas is determined to help give her friend a memorable Christmas. Well, it is memorable. For both.

While a fun read about their holiday at McKenzie Bridge, where Mike, the former DEA guy that Sally felt.... something .... for, is now Chief of Police. He invited Sally for this holidays, opening the door to romance, but gets a lot more company than expected, including, of course, Pearl. I won't go into details, that would ruin some of the fun, but let's just say the holiday involves both Christmas card perfect scenes and cookies as well as a flooded hotel, runaway reindeer, troubled children (and marriages), delayed flights, angels, some, uh, very under-dressed travelers in a storm, and, well, enough teasers. Sally and Pearl, who was wearing an "I solved a murder and all I got was this lousy sweatshirt" (hot pink, I might add) as the story opens, somehow manage to be right in the middle of it. What is the "it" they are in the middle of? Well, a community Christmas, obviously, but the question of who is trying to harm the town gossip, Birdie? Or, is it all in Birdie's imagination?

Needless to say, this time spurred on by Sally, Sally and Pearl can't help looking into it. It's a fun ride, or should I say sleigh ride. Amid all the action and disruptive events, we get to look deeper into not just Sally's heart in this book, but Pearl's. While she always seems upbeat and in search of the next Happy Hour, her past does have an impact on her actions. Nope, not sharing any more details other than to emphasize that there is more to this series than fun, humorous events and close calls. And, oh, sugar cookie fans, of which I am one, you'll find Pearl's prize winning recipe at the end.

Thanks #NetGalley and #OpenSkyPublishing - #WendyDay for welcoming me back for a visit. Already looking forward to my next.

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Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos by Wendy Day is a fun and festive holiday story with a little bit of mystery mixed in.
I found the characters to be very likeable and the story was well paced. I loved the atmosphere and the spirit!
Please find attached by spoiler free youtube review for my full thoughts.

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I really struggled to get into this one. You could certainly read as a stand-alone but I do wish I had read the first novel prior to this one.

That being said, the "oh my stars" "fixin to" etc got rather repetitive and I found one of the MC's to be quite whiny and irritating.

Not my fave but I could see it sitting well with the right reader

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Sally and Pearl, the fiesty septuagenarians we first meet in Mexico, Margaritas, & Murder, are back for an all new wild adventure in Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos. The description of the Golden Girls meets Thelma and Louise fits fairly well (minus the ‘suicidal’ ending from the movie of course, lol). Sally couldn’t be more hyped for Christmas…that is until she finds out none of her family are going to be able to make it this year. Skipping Christmas wouldn’t really bother Pearl (as she’s not the biggest fan of the holiday), but Sally wouldn’t dream of skipping it. So rather than stay home and be miserable, the dynamic duo end up heading for McKenzie Bridge, a picturesque small town with a passion for Christmas. But as we learned from the previous book when these two travel chaos follows…and of course that’s most definitely the case this time around. This was another fun, fast paced adventure that had me smiling from start to finish. I’d like to thank Wendy Day, Open Sky Publishing, and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review an eARC of Christmas, Cabernet, and Chaos.

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Pearl and Sally are a pair of best friends in their 60’s that just happen to also be excellent sleuths. After finding out her family won’t be able to spend the holidays with her, Sally decides to take up her friend, Mike, on his offer to spend Christmas with him in Oregon. Mike describes his town as the perfect Christmas village and off Sally and Pearl go.

Soon after arriving, Sally and Pearl meet the town’s eccentric founder, Birdie, who believes everyone is out to get her. Is Birdie being paranoid or is there someone truly out to get her? Leave it to Sally and Pearl to figure it out!

This was a light and easy read. The storyline is pretty simple and the character’s dialogue could get repetitive at times. Sally, in her pursuit for Christmas perfection, came off as a bit whiny at times but in all it was a quick read that kept me entertained.

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Christmas Cabernet, & Chaos 🎄
By Wendy Day

Thanks to netgalley for giving me a copy for a honest review

What's it about?:

Golden Girls meets Thelma and Louise

After her holiday plans fall apart, Sally drags her grumpy best friend, Pearl, to McKenzie Bridge- a small town famous for Christmas magic.

When a local woman claims someone is trying to kill her, and the Police Chief won’t listen, the spunky senior sleuths jump into action.

Can Sally and Pearl save Christmas?

My thoughts:
This is Second book in the Sally and Pearl mysteries I have read and reviewed the first being Mexico, Margaritas, & Murder I really enjoyed reading this one as well 😊 I really love Sally and Pearl they are so fun together and have a great friendship. There are so many laugh out loud moment I would highly recommend it.

Rating ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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OMG what a fun holiday read! I loved Sally and Pearl. They had so much chaos while vacationing but it was all worth it in the end. It was a great friendship read and many laugh out loud moments. I always love when a good mystery happens when characters are on vacation and seeing how they figure everything out. If you want a fun holiday read about friendships and solving a little mystery this book is for you!

Thank you for allowing me to read this arc early.

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