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The Reluctant Elf

3.50  ·  Rating details ·  365 ratings  ·  79 reviews
Meet Britain's Worst Innkeeper

Single mother and extremely undomestic goddess, Lottie, has five days to become the ultimate B&B hostess to save her beloved Aunt Kate’s livelihood.

When Aunt Kate ends up in the hospital, Lottie and her seven-year-old daughter are called to rural Wales to stand in at the B&B. Without the faintest idea how to run a hotel (she can barely
ebook, 100 pages
Published October 14th 2014 by Notting Hill Press (first published October 6th 2014)
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3.50  · 
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 ·  365 ratings  ·  79 reviews

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This was a short little Christmas chick-lit read. I have to say I was disappointed though. It was an incredibly bland read. The romance was PG at best. No real development between the characters. I noticed some reviews stated they found it "funny" but sadly I did not. I found it to be lame from beginning to end. Even the ending was a letdown. It wasn’t even a happily ever after, but possibly a HFN. I don’t think I'll be reading anymore of this writers work, but at least it was offered as a kindl ...more
Sophie (Blogger)
Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Lottie was looking forward to the nice quiet Christmas in the countryside with her daughter, Mabel and Aunt Kate until the unthinkable happens. Catching the first train out, she is faced with the fear that this could be just like what happened to her parents years ago, though arriving at the hospital shows that her Aunt is in a coma due to her injuries but should be fine, she just need time to heal before they take her out of the coma.
It doesn't take Lottie to realise that she would now have to
Dec 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What an adorable short book (approximately 120 pages) this is!! Perfect for this time of the year!! Michele Gorman is an amazing story teller who will capture your imagination and make you laugh and cringe--but mostly shake your head in wonder at the slap stick antics in The Reluctant Elf. I can't say enough good things about it. I read it on about an hour--no way I was getting up from this chair!The Reluctant Elf
Nov 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
I actually listened to this Christmas novella on Halloween. It was a delightful treat! A sweet, quick read that is funny with a little bit of romance. Very enjoyable!!

Oct 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014, kindle
This was an absolutely delightful festive read.

When Lottie receives news that her beloved aunt has had a bad accident she rushes to her side. She discovers that her aunt is expecting a reviewer to stay at the B&B she runs, over Christmas. The trouble is that the cook was in the same car accident and is going on holiday to recover with the cleaner. This leaves Lottie and her daughter with a nightmare to sort out before the reviewer lands on them!

Her aunt needs the rating to keep her B&B r
Dec 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is the second book I’ve read by Michele Gorman, the first also being a Christmas book called Christmas Carol which I can highly recommend. You can check out my review here.

The reluctant elf is all about software programmer Lottie who is drafted in at last minute to look after her Aunt’s B&B.

The story kicks off with a rather unfortunate situation which gives us an insight into Lottie’s past and what she’s had to go through. She lives with her daughter Mabel and that also shows just how s
Nov 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Originally posted on:

This lovely novella is a precious little gem. I enjoyed every page and time flew while I was reading it. Lottie and her beautiful clever daughter stole my heart from the begining. They were fighters and Lottie just couldn't see her aunt's dream, her B&B, disappear over Christmas so she gave it everything to save it. And what an adventure it was, as she had no idea how to run a house, even less a B&B, she hired the handsome Dan
Mrs Mommy Booknerd
Gorman has an amazing way to get into the head of women and articulate their thoughts in an honest, humorous and entertaining way. She creates a blend of characters and a plot that is not to be expected, but it appreciated and enjoyed by anyone who reads her books. I adored the story of Lottie and the journey to pull off Christmas even among the chaos and confusion due to the zany characters that surround Lottie. Humorous, heartwarming and entertaining. Another hit by Gorman, an ABSOLUTE FAVORIT ...more
Hayley Noble
Dec 09, 2014 rated it liked it
This book was a good quick read to get me in the mood for Christmas. It was fairly uneventful and predictable at times though. The story runs along the lines of a single mum, going to stay with her aunt for Christmas. However the aunt has a car accident and our heroine is forced to run her crumbling b'n'b, made even worse by the fact that a very important guest is coming, and surprise surprise, she can't cook and let's throw in a handsome guy to help and see what happens. It's well written and f ...more
Dec 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Having a tendency to be an OC sometimes, the setting and situation gave me a nightmare- its a Christmas disaster waiting to explode! I am glad the author didn't sugar coat the outcome but just gave it a "just right" okay ending. It is a holiday novel after all and we all deserve a good one. Fast paced with some funny moments, will try another Gorman novel soon.
I actually listened to this Christmas novella on Halloween. It was a delightful treat! A sweet, quick read that is funny with a little bit of romance. Very enjoyable!!

NOTE: This book is now published as "Christmas at the Falling-Down Guesthouse."
Oct 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Very sweet quick read. I especially loved the B&B storyline since its been my dream to always have one. Fun book to read over the Holidays.
Jan 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Fun, quick read.
Aug 01, 2017 rated it liked it

I chose this rating because this book was bland food my taste. I would've liked to read a bit more active adventures.
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was ok
2.5/5. It wasn't that good a book but it did have a decent ending and it was a fairly short book too.
T. Rosado

3.5 Stars
Nov 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
So, it seems that after a very bumpy start, my relationship with Michele has hit a steady, sure level, as all her last books that I had a pleasure to read, were a real joy and kept me entertained. Michele, or rather her short stories, aim to be clever, witty reads with a punchline. "The Reluctant Elf" was for sure like this.

Lottie was supposed to travel to Wales with her little daughter Mabel to visit her Aunt over Christmas but she must change her plans and go there few days later - her Aunt ha
Nov 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was given an ecopy of this book by the PR team at Notting Hill Press in exchange for an honest review which I'm more than happy to give. I loved the cover and title of the book and I am a total sucker for a christmas tale.

Lottie receives news that her aunt has been involved in a car accident and is in hospital. She and her daughter Mabel were travelling to Wales to spend Christmas with her anyway so pack everything up and head off to Wales a few days early.

Lottie finds herself in a bit of a pi
Oct 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
The Reluctant Elf is a delightfully heartwarming novella by Michele Gorman. A very appealing cast of characters and a refreshingly unique plot make this engaging story a superb holiday read.

Lottie, along with her young daughter Mabel, rush to Wales upon hearing the news that her Aunt Kate has been injured in an accident. Upon their arrival, they are greeted with the news that Kate should make a full recovery but it is the fate of Kate's B&B that is precarious. Learning that Kate desperately
Suze Lavender
Jul 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Lottie's aunt Kate has had an accident. Lottie and her seven year old daughter Mabel were supposed to spend their Christmas holiday with Kate at her bed and breakfast. An important guest has booked a Christmas stay and it's too late to cancel the booking. He has to give the place a rating, so he's an important guest. Lottie has never seen the bed and breakfast and unfortunately it isn't quite what she expected it to be. The house is a mess and Lottie isn't used to cooking and cleaning. In London ...more
Dec 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was looking for a short Christmas read with a good plot and this was it, yet I still had some mixed reactions.

Lottie definitely earns the title "Britain's Worst Innkeeper," although I don't think that Aunt Kate would have won any awards in that area either. When Aunt Kate is in an accident, Lottie and her daughter Mable head to Wales for the holidays a few days early. When they get there, they discover that Kate is down for the count AND expecting important guests over the holidays. And if th
Sherri Bryant
Oct 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
When Lottie’s Aunt Kate is seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident, Lottie and her seven year old daughter spend Christmas in Wales and find themselves hosting a reviewer at her Aunt’s B&B to obtain a rating that will ensure Kate keeps her business. What Lottie doesn’t count on is the home is rundown and in dire need of repairs and refurbishing. With the assistance of the local taxi driver, Danny, she tries to turn the B&B into a Victorian themed Christmas experience for the review ...more
Review originally posted on: Rather Be Reading Blog

Christmastime & home improvement rolled into one = two of my favorite things! Lottie and her young daughter head to Wales when Aunt Kate lands herself in the hospital after a terrible car accident. Unable to take care of her bed & breakfast due to her injuries, Lottie is positive she can handle the stay of a big reviewer and his family especially because her aunt desperately needs the exposure. When she makes her way to the B&B, she’
Annabel Krantz
Jan 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
I love a little bit of Christmas reading to imbue me with the holiday spirit! In fact, I think I like the lead up to Christmas day, filled with pretty decorations, good will, and holiday traditions, better than Christmas Day itself! Gorman sent me a copy of her latest short story, and it was super quaint - a great holiday read, and in a perfect, one-sitting size!

When Lottie's beloved Aunt ends up in a coma just before Christmas, Lottie is left to rescue her dilapidated bed and breakfast from for
Oct 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was asked to do an honest review in return for a free copy of this book. What can I say? As always Michele has written an absolute gem!

I was totally hooked on this festive read from the very first page, and couldn't put it down! The story and characters drew me in from the start.

Lottie and her young daughter are planning on going to Wales to spend Christmas with Lottie's aunt who is her last remaining relative. Lottie gets a call a few days before they are due to leave to say her aunt has bee
Oct 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy of this book in return for an honest review.

I am, and always have been, an avid reader and my main criteria for a good author is for them to be intelligent and articulate. Michele meets my strict criteria and writes interesting, fun, witty and warm stories.

Having read and enjoyed most of Michele’s books, The Reluctant Elf didn’t disappoint. Even as early as October, I like to start reading Christmas novels to make the dark winter months brighter and this novella was a plea
Jo Barton
Nov 13, 2014 rated it really liked it

A ramshackle B&B in rural Wales is the setting for this delightful Christmas read. Following a devastating accident to her aunt Kate, Lottie and her seven year old daughter Mabel, arrive in Wales, ostensibly to take over running their aunt’s guest house, however, they are dismayed to find that the B&B, far from being a rural retreat, turns out to be something from a hammer horror film. The faded elegance and shabby chic of this rural idyll and the way in which Lottie enlists the help of
Christine P
Nov 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy of this book for a honest review.
Lottie Crisp and her seven year old daughter, Mabel, are going to spend Christmas in Bodelwyddan with their Aunty Kate. However, they end up going to Bodelwyddan earlier than planned due to Kate having an accident and ending up in hospital.
There is a guest reviewer and his family coming to Aunty Kate's B and B for the Christmas holidays and with Kate in hospital, taking care of the guests and B and B fall to Lottie and Mabel, with the help
SOS Aloha
Jan 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Christmas without elves isn't a Christmas at all. - Anonymous

Lottie is reluctant to step outside her orderly life where she programs video games by day and cares for Mabel at night. Her orderly life comes to a screeching halt when her only relative, Aunt Kate, lands in the intestive care after a car accident. Lottie and Mabel rush to her bedside in remote Wales, only to learn that she is expecting a hotel reviewer descending upon Aunt Kate's B&B - a reviewer who can make or break the busines
Charlotte Lynn
Oct 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a cute story. Michele Gorman has always come through with stories that entertain. While being a single mom is not easy, Lottie manages it. I could understand how all the busyness of being a mom makes it difficult to run a household. When she was called to help her aunt with her B&B I was curious to see how she would handle running the Bed and Breakfast on her own. I laughed many times at the ways she came up with to do the major fixes that were needed. Using toothpaste and gum...who ...more
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Michele writes books packed with heart and humor, best friends and girl power. She also writes cozy romcoms under the pen-name Lilly Bartlett. Lilly’s books are full of warmth, romance, quirky characters and guaranteed happily-ever-afters.

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