Book Review: Holiday Romance by Catherine Walsh

Posted October 4, 2022 by WendyW in Book Review, bookblogger / 35 Comments

Holiday Romance
One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

by Catherine Walsh
Publication Date October 4, 2022
Published by Bookouture
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Genres: Fiction / Holidays, Fiction / Romance / Clean & Wholesome, Fiction / Romance / Contemporary, Fiction / Romance / General, Fiction / Romance / Holiday, Fiction / Romance / Romantic Comedy, Fiction / Women
Pages: 353
Format: ARC
Reading Challenges: 12 Books of Christmas 2022

***I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.***

She’s meant to be catching flights, not catching feelings…


Molly and Andrew are just trying to get home to Ireland for the holidays, when a freak snowstorm grounds their flight.


Nothing romantic has ever happened between them: they’re friends and that’s all. But once a year, for the last ten years, Molly has spent seven hours and fifteen minutes sitting next to Andrew on the last flight before Christmas from Chicago to Dublin, drinking terrible airplane wine and catching up on each other’s lives. In spite of all the ways the two friends are different, it’s the holiday tradition neither of them has ever wanted to give up.


Molly isn’t that bothered by Christmas, but—in yet another way they’re total opposites—Andrew is a full-on fanatic for the festive season and she knows how much getting back to Ireland means to him. So, instead of doing the sane thing and just celebrating the holidays together in America, she does the stupid thing. The irrational thing. She vows to get him home. And in time for his mam’s famous Christmas dinner.


The clock is ticking. But Molly always has a plan. And—as long as the highly-specific combination of taxis, planes, boats, and trains all run on time—it can’t possibly go wrong.


What she doesn’t know is that, as the snow falls over the city and over the heads of two friends who are sure they’re not meant to be together, the universe might just have a plan of its own…


A totally gorgeous and escapist friends-to-lovers festive romance with a swoon-worthy hero. Perfect for fans of Sophie Kinsella, Mhairi McFarlane, and Christina Lauren.


Holiday Romance by Catherine Walsh is a lovely friends-to-lovers romance about two friends trying to get to Ireland for the holidays.  It’s light and full of a fun bunch of characters. 

Book Recap:

Flying friends, Molly and Andrew are two ex-pats from Ireland, living in Chicago.  Every year for the past ten years, they have flown together back to Ireland to visit their respective families for the Christmas holidays.  Andrew has a large family and loves visiting for Christmas, whereas Molly goes more out of obligation.  Andrew loves Christmas, and Molly doesn’t.  But, for ten years, they have flown together to get home.  

On their tenth flight, a bad storm in the Atlantic forces the airlines to cancel their flight and all the other flights bound for Ireland.  Molly knows how important it is to Andrew that he gets home to see his family, so she finds an alternate route that combines flights, ferries, trains, and cars.  Can she get Andrew home in time for Christmas?  And will all this extra time together help them to discover feelings for each other? 

My Thoughts: 

I love a well done friends to lovers trope, and Holiday Romance is very well done.  The book flashes back to each of the original 9 flights, and we get to see the friend relationship develop through those flashbacks.  In the present timeline, we can watch Andrew and Molly get closer together as they get some time to develop romantic feelings for each other.  

The travels were a bit over the top, but that’s what makes the book so much fun.  All the different locations, and odd places they found themselves, left me wondering if they would ever get to Ireland.  I enjoyed many of the side characters, especially Andrew’s boisterous family, and his very odd cousin Oliver who was a hoot.  

Andrew and Molly were obviously meant to be together from the very beginning, but it took them a bit of time to realize this.  But in the meantime, we get to enjoy their friendship and banter, as they get to know each other better and are able to bring out the best in each other.  


I highly recommend Holiday Romance for anyone who enjoys romance. I received a complimentary copy of this book.  The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

About Catherine Walsh

Catherine Walsh

Catherine Walsh was born and raised in Ireland. She has a degree in Popular Literature and the only prize she ever won for writing was at the age of 14 in school (but she still cherishes it.)

She lived in London for a few years where she worked in Publishing and the non-profit sector before returning to Dublin where she now lives between the mountains and the sea. When not writing she is trying and failing to not kill her houseplants.

Book Challenges:

Holiday Romance counts towards my 12 Books of Christmas Challenge.

Have you read Holiday Romance? How do you feel about reading Christmas Books already?

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 12 Books of Christmas 2022

35 responses to “Book Review: Holiday Romance by Catherine Walsh

  1. This sounds like a fun read. I like the idea of the book taking the reader back in time to see their relationship develop. As to “over the top,” I’ve heard tales from those traveling recently that in another time would seem over the top, but are becoming the norm in traveling post-lockdowns. Good review, Wendy. I’m still smiling from reading it. I think I need to read the book!

  2. bhgfdhgfhgfh THIS SOUNDS LIKE SO SO MUCH FUN??!! plus all the travelling I NEED THIS THANK YOU!! your review is amazing like always <33

  3. This sounds like a fun story. It reminds me a bit of the movie LEAP YEAR with Amy Adams and Matthew Goode, which I adored. I’m going to add this to my list. 😀

  4. Even though friends to lovers stories aren’t usually be thing, this one sounds absolutely delightful. I’m going to keep it in mind for December when I left room to read some Christmas stories. Excellent review!

    • I like it because although they are friends, they really only meet up once a year, so it’s not like they are friends that hang out all the time and then suddenly realize they are in love.