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Lake Summers #4

The Cranberry Inn

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An unputdownable, feel-good Christmas romance about fresh starts, the importance of family and learning how to follow your heart. Perfect for fans of Mary Alice Monroe, Rachel Hanna and Carolyn Brown.

As twinkling lights go up and snowflakes begin to fall, Laurel Hanover and her eight-year-old son are going home to the Cranberry Inn in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains. Laurel can’t wait to leave New York behind to help her father run the family business, and make snow angels with her son, even if it’s just for Christmas. But when she walks through the door, she’s shocked to find the inn in disrepair, and a letter saying her father will be gone until Christmas Eve…

No one in town knows where Laurel’s father is, and she doesn’t know whether to be worried or angry – but she won’t let the inn go under, and nothing will get in the way of the perfect Christmas for her son. Seeing the worn-out wooden bannisters, bare of festive lights, she immediately recruits her childhood friend, brooding local carpenter Joel Hutcherson. They might disagree on whether any walls actually need to come down, but each rip in the carpet makes Laurel more concerned for her father, and Joel is a welcome distraction. And when he admits that Laurel was his first crush, she realises she’s falling for him.

But then Laurel uncovers a card with beautiful, ornate writing amongst her father’s things and learns the real reason he disappeared. And it changes everything. Worse still, she thinks Joel knew the truth all along.

Laurel thought this was going to be the perfect Christmas – that maybe she had found her happy. But now there’s nothing to stop her from running back to New York the moment the baubles come down… is there?

257 pages, Kindle Edition

First published November 15, 2021

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About the author

Barbara Josselsohn

6 books184 followers
Barbara Josselsohn is an award-winning novelist and journalist who loves crafting stories about strong protagonists facing a fork in the road. Her novels include The Cranberry Inn, The Lily Garden, The Bluebell Girls, The Lilac House, and The Last Dreamer, Her articles and essays appear in a range of publications including New York Magazine, Parents Magazine, Consumers Digest, The New York Times, American Baby, Writer’s Digest, and Westchester Magazine. She teaches novel writing at the Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence College and is also a private book coach. Other than writing, her biggest passion is her family: her husband and their three kids. Visit her online at www.BarbaraJosselsohn.com,
@Barbara_Josselsohn_Author (Instagram), @BarbaraJoss (twitter) or Facebook.com/BarbaraSolomonJosselsohn.... Watch for her new historical series, coming in 2023!,

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 162 reviews
Profile Image for Sandysbookaday .
2,047 reviews2,102 followers
December 27, 2021
EXCERPT: He ripped open the envelope and unfolded the piece of paper inside. There were only a few words, and while he recognised her handwriting, the words looked shaky, as though her hand were trembling as she wrote them.

Joel, my sweet boy. Don't stay here. Go back.

Don't believe him. Go back.

He stared at the sentences. She'd clearly known she was dying when she wrote this. And she'd expected that he'd come home. And he'd always intended to go back to Singapore after he took care of his mother's affairs. He'd never intended to stay in Lake Summers.

But still, why would his mom be so worried about him staying? Why would this be the final message she had for him? And who shouldn't he believe? What was that all about?

ABOUT 'THE CRANBERRY INN': As twinkling lights go up and snowflakes begin to fall, Laurel Hanover and her eight-year-old son are going home to the Cranberry Inn in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains. Laurel can’t wait to leave New York behind to help her father run the family business, and make snow angels with her son, even if it’s just for Christmas. But when she walks through the door, she’s shocked to find the inn in disrepair, and a letter saying her father will be gone until Christmas Eve…

No one in town knows where Laurel’s father is, and she doesn’t know whether to be worried or angry – but she won’t let the inn go under, and nothing will get in the way of the perfect Christmas for her son. Seeing the worn-out wooden bannisters, bare of festive lights, she immediately recruits her childhood friend, brooding local carpenter Joel Hutcherson. They might disagree on whether any walls actually need to come down, but each rip in the carpet makes Laurel more concerned for her father, and Joel is a welcome distraction. And when he admits that Laurel was his first crush, she realises she’s falling for him.

But then Laurel uncovers a card with beautiful, ornate writing amongst her father’s things and learns the real reason he disappeared. And it changes everything. Worse still, she thinks Joel knew the truth all along.

Laurel thought this was going to be the perfect Christmas – that maybe she had found her happy. But now there’s nothing to stop her from running back to New York the moment the baubles come down… is there?

MY THOUGHTS: The publicity blurb describes The Cranberry Inn as 'An unputdownable, feel-good Christmas romance about fresh starts, the importance of family and learning how to follow your heart,' and it's 100% true. I read this in one sitting, not wanting to let these (mostly) lovable and relatable characters out of my grasp. But even the irritating characters have their redeeming moments.

This is a wonderful small town romance set over the Christmas period with characters you just can't help but love, and town traditions that made me want to move there for the Christmas break. I want to go skating on the lake, and drink hot chocolate. I want to shop in the quirky little stores and I want to meet all the lovely townspeople that combined to make The Cranberry Inn a heartwarming and satisfying read.

Although you have a good idea where this story is going to end up, the journey is a wonderful one, and I enjoyed every moment of it. I loved the way the author didn't rush the romance or make it schmaltzy. I loved the way Laurel's priority is always her son, Simon, and the way she considers his feelings and how he is going to see things. I love this author's easy to read writing style and will definitely be looking for more of her titles.


#TheCranberryInn #NetGalley

I: @barbara_josselsohn_author @bookouture

T: @barbarajoss @Bookouture

#christmasfiction #contemporaryfiction #romance #womensfiction

THE AUTHOR: Barbara Josselsohn grew up on Long Island and lived for several years in her beloved New York City before moving to the northern suburbs. She began her career as a business journalist and then turned her attention to her first love, fiction. Barbara teaches writing at the Sarah Lawrence Writing Institute and other venues, and is the founder and coordinator of the Scarsdale Library Writers Center, which supports and promotes local writers. She and her husband live in Westchester, N.Y., and have three children.

DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Bookouture via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of The Cranberry Inn by Barbara Josselsohn for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.

For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com

This review is also published on Twitter, Amazon, Instagram and my webpage https://sandysbookaday.wordpress.com/...
Profile Image for Sara Raafat.
129 reviews13 followers
December 23, 2021
A quick, easy read, it's described as a feel good Christmas romance and it sure is. I loved the setting and the characters, there's something about villages during Christmas that makes me want to cozy up with a cup of hot chocolate while reading, so if that's what you're looking for, then definitely give this book a try.

Thank you @netgalley & @bookouture for this ARC in exchange for an honest review💕
Profile Image for Bonnie DeMoss.
828 reviews93 followers
November 21, 2021
This is a sweet Christmas story about family, memories, and moving forward. The characters are endearing and the story is heartwarming. The reader is transported to the Christmas season in a lovely mountain town where Laurel is trying to get the Inn ready for an unexpected guest, since her father has gone away on a mysterious trip. Memories of lost loved ones and coming back home again are major themes in this story. It is also about learning what you really want in life and having the courage to start over again. This is a book to enjoy with a good cup of coffee on a chilly day, while looking forward to your own holiday celebration. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a good Christmas read.

I received a free copy of this book from Bookouture via Netgalley. My review is voluntary and my opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Carla.
6,131 reviews134 followers
January 5, 2022
I enjoyed returning to Lake Summers, a small town in the Adirondacks. Laurel and her son Simon are planning on a quiet Christmas at home in New York, when she gets a call from her father saying he needs her in Lake Summers. Her company has closed its doors for the month of September, so she packs the car and they head home to the Cranberry Inn. When she arrives, her father is not there, but he has left a cryptic message saying he will be back Christmas Eve with a big surprise. The Inn is supposed to be empty, but she accepts a last minute reservation. A gentleman will be staying for the month. He wants the Inn to himself. She agrees and sets everything up for his say. What she notices is that the Inn is in rough shape and needs repairs. When a friend from highschool, Joel, shows up to fix things she accepts for her father's sake. Joel is back in town to pack up his late mother’s home and her store. While he has been there, he and Laurel's father struck up a friendship of sorts. What she doesn't expect is to begin trusting Joel again and to have those highschool feelings get rekindled.

I really enjoyed this story of second chances, family, following your dreams, starting over, grief, reconciliation, community and friendship. When I first picked this one up, I didn't realize it was a festive, holiday story. I enjoyed seeing how this small community celebrated the holidays with many people returning for Christmas, skating parties, bonfires and a Christmas Eve play. This was a story of friends who become so much more to one another. It was a slow burn romance, that had me cheering for Laurel and Jake. I loved the secondary characters and it was great to see a few of the recurring characters from other books. This was a well written story that pulled me in and had me invested in the story. It was a sweet, sometimes emotional story about what is important in life and living the life you want with the people you love. I recommend this story to those who are enjoy holiday stories, romance and family. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.
Profile Image for Susan Peterson.
1,631 reviews277 followers
November 22, 2021
The Cranberry Inn is a heartwarming story of second chances, set in a lovely inn at Christmastime. Laurel and Joel had been friends in high school, moving on to bigger cities, but have both returned to their hometown to help out their parents’ businesses. Life is a lot more complicated now, but they each have unresolved feelings—can they move on and find a future together? I loved the small town charm and the wonderful characters, bringing a cozy feel to this lovely book.
Profile Image for Deanne Patterson.
1,902 reviews76 followers
April 18, 2022
Described as a feel good Christmas book, it really is.
The cozy,comforting descriptions of the inn with it's beautiful decorations and plenty of snow in a quaint village setting will draw you right in.
Add in the mystery of Laurel's father's mysterious trip right before Christmas when he should be at the inn preparing for an unexpected guest.
Reminiscent of great holiday times with all the special memories and making fresh new starts .
I have enjoyed this and other books by this author.

Pub date Nov 15,2021.
I was given a complimentary copy of this book.
All opinions expressed are my own.
Profile Image for Judy Shemtob.
37 reviews1 follower
November 10, 2021
I loved meeting Barbara Solomon Josselsohn’s latest unforgettable characters in her newest Lake Summers novel THE CRANBERRY INN. People in this charming Adirondack town know each other’s stories. There’s Laurel who heads back to the inn to help her father with her son Simon. Joel returns from working abroad to help his mother and her store while keeping significant secrets for people he cares about. With hopes of hiding out and rejuvenating himself, Christopher’s actions create quite a stir among locals. The author’s descriptions of rooms and stores are so detailed that I could easily picture myself in scene after scene. Definitely a page turner! I raced to read what was going to be revealed next and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Barbara, you’ve done it again! Congratulations!
511 reviews8 followers
November 27, 2021
This is a perfect Christmas story set in a small town in the Adirondack Mountains. The author does an excellent job of writing a heartwarming story about second chances in both personal and professional lives. The area is so well described I felt like I was actually there. Two high school friends are called back to their hometown at the same time to deal with family issues. Will they reconnect? Be sure to read this book to find out. I recommend this book to anyone who likes a Christmas romance.
Profile Image for Brittany Loves Reading.
36 reviews20 followers
November 12, 2021
I am definitely starting to get in the holiday spirit with this Netgalley ARC of The Cranberry Inn by Barbara Josselsohn.

The Cranberry Inn follows Laurel and her son Simon at Christmas as they go home to her parent's inn where Laurel grew up. Her mother has passed away and her father has mysteriously taken a trip away, so Laurel needs to hold down the fort at the inn. While home, Laurel reconnects with her high school crush, Joel, and together they fix up the Inn and help keep the inn's one guest, Christopher, happy.

I really enjoyed this story. It had Christmas trees, ice skating, a Christmas Eve play, and so much more. It also had some romance, a little love triangle drama, and some small town feel all sprinkled in. If you want a cute holiday book, I would definitely recommend.

Thank you to @netgalley , the author, and the publisher for gifting me this EARC for review!

Rating: 4 Stars
Profile Image for Barbara Sissel.
Author 11 books714 followers
November 14, 2021
The story that unfolds within the pages of THE CRANBERRY INN is as delightful as its cover. It begins with a warmly relatable heroine and a mysterious phone call that will alter her life and prove that some holiday gifts don’t come wrapped up with a bow. Sometimes they’re less tangible and come in the form of a second chance. Sometimes they’re given from one heart to another. This is such a story; one you don’t want to miss.
Profile Image for Shannon Rochester.
894 reviews76 followers
August 4, 2023
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for my digital copy in exchange for an honest opinion. I'm not gonna lie, this was another one I chose just because I liked the cover...and the name. That sounded pretty cool to me...and again, I liked it just as much as I thought I was going to. It was a little cliche but it was such a feel good story and I really liked the characters and the location so I was sold. Who doesn't need a book every now and then where you don't have to try and keep up or force your way through it? I would recommend this to anyone that liked contemporary love stories with a little bit of family drama thrown in.
Profile Image for Bookworm86 .
1,496 reviews151 followers
November 19, 2021

Review for 'The Cranberry Inn' by Barbara Josselsohn.

Read and reviewed via NetGalley for Barbara Josselsohn, Bookouture publishers and Bookouture anonymous

Publication date 15th November 2021.

This is the third book I have read by this author. It is also the fourth book in the 'Lake Summer' series. I have previously read 'The Bluebell Girls' (second book in the series) and 'The Lily Garden' (third book in the series) which I highly recommend, although this can be read as a standalone.

I was originally drawn to this book by its beautiful eye catching cover and its intriguing synopsis and title. The synopsis stated that this book is 'Perfect for fans ofMary Alice Monroe, Rachel Hanna and Carolyn Brown.' I am a huge fan of Carolyn Brown so am looking forward to seeing if this lives up to this statement. I am also a huge fan of Barbara and if this is half as good as 'The Bluebell Girls' or 'The Lily Garden' it is sure to be a page turning read. I must admit I was also biased due to the publisher being Bookouture. I have yet to read a book published by Bookouture that I haven't enjoyed. Hopefully this won't be the first... Watch this space! (Written before I started reading the book).

This novel consists of 20 chapters. The chapters are short to medium in length so possible to read 'just one more chapter' before bed...OK, I know yeah right, but still just in case!

This book is based in New York, USA 🇺🇸.

This book is written in third person perspective and the main protagonists are Laurel Hanover and Joel Hutcherson. The benefits of third person perspective especially with multiple protagonists are that it let's you see the bigger picture of what's going on and you get to know more characters more, what they are thinking and what they are doing. It feels like you get to see the whole picture and not miss out in anything.

🎶 It's beginning to look alot like Christmas 🎶

Another absolutely gorgeous read by the absolutely fantastic Barbara Josselsohn and this one will definitely get you in the festive spirit!!

Well done Barbara on yet another gorgeous heart warming novel!!

This book is beautifully written with vivid descriptions that suck you straight into Lake Summers. It will take you on a gorgeous holiday where you will feel the snow on your face and the warmth in your heart. The title, cover and synopsis suit the storyline perfectly.

Yet another beautiful storyline from Barbara filled with love, family, friendship, secrets, hope and romance. I loved visiting Lake Summers again after discovering it in Barbara's 'The Bluebell Girls'. I love the realistic community vibe, the friendships, the whole atmosphere is just so relaxing and friendly. I was devastated when I came to the end and had to leave Lake Summers again. This is an absorbing page turner that will keep you hooked until the ending. I hope your busy writing your next book Barbara as I'm already missing Lake Summers. There was plenty going on between Laurel, Joel, Doug, Katie, Christopher and all the other villagers that will keep you completely absorbed throughout. I would love to see this stunning series turned into a movie and I cannot wait until the next guaranteed success in this captivating series.

Although this is the fourth book in the series I had absolutely no problems reading it without the others. Any details or events that have previously happened are mentioned in just the right amount of detail to let a new reader know what has happened and yet not too much to bore a previous reader.

I loved meeting some of Lake Summer's residents again along with meeting the new characters. I really connected and invested in Laurel and Joel's characters and enjoyed meeting them. Laurel is such a strong woman which is always a bonus for me on books. I enjoyed watching Laurel and Simon's relationship grow and develop as mother and sln along with Caroline and Joel's relationship and I am hoping there will be another book to see what happens with The Cranberry Inn. I recognised some of the characters from 'The Bluebell Girls' straight away such as Maxine, Gull and the 'Smoothie Dudes' Stan and Trey. Every character is unique and well developed and I was really invested in each of them. I really hope to meet them all again!!

Congratulations Barbara on another success and here's to your next Lake Summer page turner!!! 🥂

Overall an addictive, heartwarming romance that will sweep you away.

Genres covered in this novel include Romance Novel, Contemporary Fiction and Domestic Fiction amongst others.

I would recommend this book to the fans of the above as well as fans of Mary Alice Monroe, Rachel Hannah, JoJo Moyes, Debbie Macomber, Carolyn Brown and anyone looking for a festive page turner.

257 pages.

This book is just 99p to purchase on kindle via Amazon or free on kindle unlimited which I think is an absolute bargain for this book!!!

Rated 5 /5 (I LOVED it ) on Goodreads, Instagram, Amazon UK and Amazon US and on over 30 Facebook pages plus my blog on Facebook.

Feel free to add me on Goodreads or follow me on my website or Facebook for more reviews

#TheCranberryInn #Bookouture #BarbaraJosselsohn #NetGalley #BookReview #BlogTour #BooksOnTour
@BarbaraJosselsohn @Bookouture @Bookworm1986 @bookworm86



Profile Image for Julie - One Book More.
1,043 reviews182 followers
November 19, 2021
In The Cranberry Inn, Laurel returns to her childhood home with her eight-year-old son after receiving a call from her father asking for help running the family inn. Laurel has always loved The Cranberry Inn, though she is surprised when she returns and finds that her father is gone, and the inn has fallen to disrepair and needs some TLC. Luckily, her childhood friend and crush Joel is in town, and he offers to help.

Joel has returned to Lake Summers to pack up his deceased mother’s house in preparation to sell it. He also wants to visit Laurel’s father, with whom he has developed a friendship. So, he is surprised to find Laurel’s dad gone and Laurel at the inn. Joel hasn’t seen his childhood crush for years, but as they reconnect, old feelings come back. However, what happens when their holiday ends, and they return to their lives? Will Laurel and Joel have a future?

This is a lovely holiday romance with some great messages about family, second chances, starting over, and embracing love. I enjoyed Laurel and Joel’s love story and how they grow closer throughout the story. It’s pretty obvious that the pair had feelings for each other when they were younger, and when they reunite, these feelings resurface. However, secrets, as well as internal conflicts stand in their way. Both Joel and Laurel are going through some changes in their lives, and they have a lot in common. They both are at a crossroads in their careers, and they both struggle with family relationships and unresolved feelings. I like how they both grow, learn, and change throughout the story, both individually and as a couple.

Lake Summers sounds like a quaint town, and the holiday season adds to the charm. It’s also vastly different from the hustle and bustle Laurel is used to living in New York. The settings contrast each other well, and Lake Summers sounds like a wonderful place to live or visit. It’s the kind of place where everybody knows everyone else, and there’s a real sense of community in the town. I also love the variety of people who live there, and we meet some old friends and some new ones in this story. All of the characters have such interesting stories, and they are dynamically developed and layered.

Something else I really like about Josselsohn’s story is that it touches upon realistic and relatable issues. In this story, for example, Joel’s frustrations in not knowing about the health of his mother hit very close to home. My parents were the same way and often didn’t talk about their medical issues until well after they were resolved. It’s not always easy being the adult child of aging parents, especially when you feel disregarded or not included, and I think the author examined these feelings well. Other topics, like finding one’s passion, making tough life decisions, reconciling one’s feelings and moving on from the past, and more will resonate with readers too.

I enjoyed this character-driven, emotional, and interesting story, and I especially appreciated the layered protagonists, the charming setting, and the romance. I think The Cranberry Inn will appeal to readers of contemporary romance, second-chance romance, and small-town romance. Thanks so much to NetGalley, Bookouture, and the author for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
Profile Image for Nic.
1,537 reviews140 followers
November 21, 2021
The Cranberry Inn has all the elements of a sweet, cozy Christmas romance story with likeable characters.
I have to say it took me awhile to get into the story. I almost gave up but I kept reading on. I became more invested in the story though I did find the narration long winded at times.
I did enjoy the story.
Many thanks to NetGalley, the publisher and author for the opportunity to read this book for my honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own.
Profile Image for Elaine.
663 reviews38 followers
November 13, 2021
The Cranberry Inn.
By Barbara Josselsohn

Cranberry Inn is in the heart of Adirondack Mountains.
a small town were ever one knows everyone.

Laurel, gets a phone call from her dad. He needs her to come home.
So packing up her son Simon
Leaving NY behind for the month of December... arriving at the Inn finding a note. It's a Bit of a mystery. But it's what you do for family.

Has come back to close up his mom's shop and sell her house
After receiving the call of her passing.

Laurel and Joel grew up together in this small town. Old friends

This is a short sweet read..
Wonderful characters. I love This author's writing style...
Profile Image for Diane.
16 reviews
November 4, 2021
“Hey,” he said. “I don’t think anyone has a monopoly on feeling out of place in high school.”

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review and I was so happy to be able to return to Lake Summer a place I have "visited" in three other Barbara Josselsohn novels- The Lilac House, The Lily Garden and The Bluebell Girls. Each book stands alone and the books do not have to be read in any order but I know once you have spent time in Lake Summer you will want to read them all. The Cranberry Inn is particularly fun because the other books are summer books and this one is set in December and we get to experience the holiday season in Lake Summer. Everybody knows everybody in Lake Summers and reading this book, you'll feel like you know them too! If like me, you were a “drama kid” in high school, this book will especially resonate with you. Barbara Josselsohn captures the feelings and the voice of those teen years so well. But at its core, this book is about families and as the author says “…families were complicated. Misunderstandings happened all the time.” Untangling those misunderstandings gives this book its emotional weight. Even readers who live where palm trees and not pine trees are the norm and who spend their holidays in shorts and bathing suits and not ice skates and down coats, will fall under the wintry, cozy spell of life at the Cranberry Inn.

Profile Image for Beatrice Followill.
1,257 reviews27 followers
November 13, 2021
Wonderful read , love how the author describes the scenes , the characters and their mindsets. I really like the authors thinking like "if the person were a house this is what they would like ". I also liked the small town , the feel of home when Laurel goes back to the Inn , the second chance at love when Joel is back home as well for a stint of time . Overall a feel good read of , hope , love and Family.
168 reviews5 followers
November 2, 2021
From the very first page I knew I was in for a treat. The descriptions of the objects and the colours and textures are superb. It’s a slow paced book but that doesn’t mean its not a page turner. Laurel receives a phone call from her father which is unclear and leaves her with no choice but to go back home to Cranberry Inn. What happens next is the basis of the whole book. An absolute delight and one I would recommend. A seasonal love story with a little twist of mystery.
Profile Image for Annette.
1,903 reviews28 followers
November 15, 2021
I love this cover and the book too! Laurel and her son Simon head to her family’s inn after a frantic sounding call from her Dad. They spend the month of December at the inn. Along the way old friends are reunited and an upcoming actor hides out at the inn.
It was a quick book with a good story and sweet romance.
It sounded like the perfect place to visit.
I enjoyed the story. Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the early copy
Profile Image for Elisabeth.
109 reviews3 followers
October 26, 2021
Rosemary Simpson's Gilded Age mysteries are one of my favorite series to read. I very much enjoy the developing relationship between Prudence and Geoffrey. A well done mystery with a dash of romance. I look forward to the next book!
Profile Image for Lori Chasko.
80 reviews15 followers
October 26, 2021
The Cranberry Inn is such a sweet story! It's not without ups and downs and some struggles, but that only makes the characters more real and relatable. They could be from a family anyone might know. I enjoyed working with the author.
Profile Image for Tessa Talks Books.
644 reviews38 followers
November 11, 2021
What I Enjoyed
The Cranberry Inn by Barbara Josselsohn is a holiday tale that will make you look forward to visiting your family over the holiday season. The re-found family love and connection theme is pervasive. And the distance that had happened before the story opens is infinitely relatable as college, work, and marriage takes many of us away from our family as adults. The togetherness is challenging to maintain when you have so much geography in between you. It is heartwarming to see a family come back together, resolve their issues, and follow their hearts. Only good things can come from that.

I love the setting and the role it plays in the central theme of the story. Laurel comes home to her family Inn at her father's insistence just to find him gone and the Inn that her mother had lovingly taken care of before she died in a state of disrepair. Her determination to get it back up and running is heartwarming, just as the descriptions of the Inn itself made me feel warm and cozy. The revitalizing of a family business that is the perfect holiday destination touched my heart and senses on so many different levels.

I also loved how all of the notable characters found a place to explore their best self and feel at home as a result. Don't we all want to find that place if we haven't? And what a perfect gift to the readers to make us feel that love and acceptance in a way we would never have expected.

The romance is surprisingly complicated. Everyone thought Laurel and Joel were an item in high school – that is, everybody except them. That made their discovery of what everyone else already knew more natural and a very low-key element in the story. The discovery of their mutual feelings fits perfectly into the central theme of the book. And, lastly, I love the story's focus on the theme. Every little element is included, which creates a relatable, compelling, and heartwarming read.

Laurel is the main character. An interior decorator assistant in New York, her dream is to create beautiful and meaningful settings of her very own. She is a single mom, and her son Simon is a delightful reminder of how important a supportive environment really is.

Both Laurel and Joel left Lake Summers because they thought that was what their parents wanted for them. Joel has come back because of the death of his mother. He gets to explore his original love of construction as he helps Laurel repair the Inn. It takes restoring the Inn and all that it stands for to make the pair follow their hearts to fulfill their dreams and find each other.

I have to mention Christopher too. He is an actor that rented out the Inn while they updated it because he just had to get away and be alone. He pretends to be a teacher and provides bits of humor in the story as it unfolds.

What I Wish
I thought one particular aspect of the story peaked and was concluded oddly quickly, so my only wish is that Laurel's issues with her father had been resolved more naturally. Or not fixed, and she worked through them within herself until she was at peace with her insecurities and choices regardless of her perceptions of what her father thought and felt.

To Read or Not to Read
If you are looking for that holiday story that will have you clamoring to spend time with family this holiday season, The Cranberry Inn is just the book you are looking for.
Profile Image for Page Journeys.
271 reviews23 followers
November 12, 2021
The Cranberry Inn
by: Barbara Josselsohn
How wonderful it would be to wake up in the Blue Mountain room of the gorgeous Cranberry Inn, on a cold Winter morning in Lake Summers. After a signature four course Inn breakfast, I'd then explore the shops in the quaint town and hike in this beautiful southwest corner of the Adirondack Mountains.
Laurel's parents ran the picturesque Inn in her hometown. After the death of her mom, her dad struggled to continue its upkeep. Laurel and her son leave New York and go to The Cranberry Inn to help for the weeks leading up to Christmas. Her dad, however, is away until Christmas Eve, so Laurel and Simon are on their own for a few weeks. As Laurel interacts with old friends, the townspeople, and the one guest at the Inn for the season, she is at a threshold of self-discovery that will affect her future. I felt as if I were with Laurel throughout her visit home, comfortable in the Inn, strolling the streets of town, and ice skating.
Josselsohn shines in creating this warm, inviting community. The easy to love town, with its shops, restaurants, and landmarks, is a character itself and pairs well with the strong, appealing narrative. Pearls, The Grill, the Smoothie Shop, a dress shop, The Heart of Lake Summers shop, and more bring Lake Summers to life.
I first fell in love with the town of Lake Summers in the first three books of Josselsohn's Lake Summer Series, and visiting there again for the holidays was like a cozy winter vacation. You might want to have a cranberry snack or beverage at hand while reading. I chose cranberry-almond biscotti!
Thank you to Net Galley and Bookouture for the advance reader's copy and the opportunity to provide my unbiased review.
 #TheCranberryInn #NetGalley
Profile Image for Samadhee Ismail.
584 reviews15 followers
November 9, 2021
After reading The Lily's Garden, I decided I want to read more books from this author and so glad I got this book approved by the publisher!

Plot:- After receiving an unexpected phone call from her father, Laurel with her husband goes back to Cranberry Inn, the inn which was run previously by her mother but now in a sort of disarray. She then gets an unexpected guest who wants some time to be himself and so she starts working around the inn, trying to run the inn like her mother used to. Meanwhile, Joel, Lauren's high school crush who is travelling around the world has returned back to the small town. Laurel then finds a deep secret about her father, finding out the reason why he had run away from the inn. And worst of all, her childhood friend Joel knows about it.

Writing:- The story gave me a feeling of Christmas that I can already feel like I am celebrating Christmas--with the vivid descriptions and everything. This is such a heartwarming tale and talk of second chances, the community get togetherness and of course, Laurel's budding romance with Joel. The writing was really great and the author actually did a good job drawing the reader towards the story, making the reader feel like they are a part of the story as well. Though I know the ending was predictable, nonetheless, I enjoyed reading this book so much that I can't wait to read more books from this author!

Characters:- Laurel is a favorable character--her devotion as a mother and how she is willing to run the inn, just like her mother used to run. Joel was also another favorable character and I rooted for them as the couple. Well, in fact, the characters in the story are all likable.

Overall:- Overall, this is a heartwarming tale and emotional story with an air of Christmas, that will draw you into the story and is quite unputdownable--worth five stars!

Many thanks to Netgalley and Bookouture for the ARC. The review is based on my honest opinion only.
6 reviews1 follower
November 15, 2021
The Cranberry Inn has been described as a gorgeous and feel good Christmas romance. It certainly is a beautifully written, charming and heartwarming story! What a joy to return to the town of Lake Summers! Having greatly enjoyed the first three novels which take place in this small town, I was really looking forward to the next in the series. Part of what makes it a feel good romance is that it transports us to a time in our lives when we may have experienced some of the simple joys in life - the wonders of nature, the kindness of strangers, the warmth of connecting with people who you care about. The author’s style of writing allows us to experience the story as if we were right there. Barbara Josselsohn never disappoints the reader with her ability to weave gems of wisdom throughout her story. There is a theme in this novel about finding one’s home and the main character Lauren reflected “if you didn’t feel at home in your own skin, everywhere felt overwhelming.” She skillfully demonstrates the universal need people have to feel seen and heard. There are many interesting conflicts that arise for the characters with respect to relationships, family, and finding meaning in life and in seeing how these conflicts are resolved illustrates some important life lessons . A perfect book to snuggle up with and enjoy as the holiday season approaches!!
Profile Image for Tarri.
586 reviews5 followers
November 9, 2021
When her father calls right after Lauren looses out on a coveted assignment at work and asks her to come run the family inn over Christmas, she packs up her eight year old son and leaves the next morning. When she arrives at the inn her father is not there, he left a note that he'd be back by Christmas, and the inn is in a state of disrepair plus there are no guests nor reservations.

The next day she gets a call for a room and decides to spend the time she is there getting the inn back to the standard they lived under while her mother was alive with the help of Joel, a high school friend, who is there to settle his mother's estate and close her store.

As Joel and Lauren get closer, Lauren starts to deal with her feeling that her father was closer to her two sisters and because she was a theater geek and they were athletes she did measure up. Doesn't everyone feel like that at one time or another?

This book was a perfect Christmas story, in my opinion. Snow, a beautiful inn, new relationships, old friends, and again, lots of snow. At times I had a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes as Lauren's feeling of not being enough were so perfectly written. The author really took me back to my own high school experiences. The author had my attention from the first page to the last.

#TheCranberryInn #BarbaraJosselsohn #NetGalley #Romance #WomensFiction #Bookouture
Profile Image for Debbie Lesley.
410 reviews9 followers
October 24, 2021
The Cranberry Inn is a sweet story reminding people that you can go home again. But, with that reminder comes the cautionary tale that one must often "grow up" and let go of the past in order to find contentment or happiness.

As this story open, we find Laurel working for an interior designer, Joanna, who has put up with Laurel's crazy schedule as a single mom, a truly single mom with no one around to help her. Following a disappointment that she would not be working on a new client's design project, Laurel gets a phone call, very static filled, from her father saying he needs her to come home to the family's inn and help her now. Following the mysterious call, Laurel packs up her son and all they would need for a while and heads home to Lake Summers to help her dad and see what the mysterious call meant. Arriving home, her dad is gone and the inn is empty.

Nope, it is not a mystery and the reader can pretty easily figure out the clues to what is happening. What we do see in the story is that often people need a slap int he face to see what is good for them and in doing so, they can start their lives over how they should and where they truly belong.

The story also lets readers know that one must give up the feelings held for many years in order to truly grow up. Quite often, people hold on to the high schooler they were, especially when they return home, and they need to be able to get past that. Letting go of that allows on to finally become the adult they are meant to be.

One of the most important things I got fromthe book is the realization that it might be universal that adult children know little of what their older parent's life might be like. If an adult child still lives in the area where their parent(s) live, then this might not be the case but when children leave home to live away from their parents, phone calls home tend to be about themseles (adult children) rather than about the parent. Maybe the adult child thinks the parent has no life but there is seldom a question asked about what the parent is doing, how they feel, what their social life is like, etc. Then, if something happens to the parent, their response is, "Why didn't s/he tell me?" I do think this is common and I think it was seen through regret by characters in the story who were left in the dark about their parents' lives.

There is a good mix of old friends and new; unusual characters, and acceptance of who the teenage has become as an adult within the story. I believe this might be the beginning of a series so it might be interesting to see what happens to the residents of Lake Summers.

I did receive this book through #NetGalley and #Bookouture. #TheCranberryInn #BarbaraJosselsohn
Profile Image for Margaret Yelton.
1,876 reviews34 followers
November 17, 2021
I found The Cranberry Inn too be a enjoyable read, a heartwarming storyline that brings two friends back together again. Who doesn't enjoy a second chance romance. I loved the setting of the Inn, and it sounds like a wonderful little town to be a part of. I definitely would recommend this book to others.

I received a ARC from NetGalley and Bookouture, and the opinions expressed here are my own.
Profile Image for GiGi Carothers.
141 reviews
November 10, 2021
This novel, The Cranberry Inn by Barbara Josselsohn is a lovely story about family relationships. After the death of family members, two visitors returned to their hometown to help with family affairs. Laurel one of three daughters always loved the family inn and found that her true calling was helping restore the inn. Joel who was the golden boy in high school returns to take care of his mother's store. Both of them had to face their previous lives and decide what to do with their futures. Thank you to Net Galley for allowing me to read this novel before its publication.
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