Winter Arrives by Roz Marshall is the first installment about a ski school in Scotland. When Jude’s husband decides to ditch her for the winter just as skiing season is starting, she barely keeps from panicking. Jude has next to no experience managing a ski resort and needs help. Jude needs a manager who actually knows what they’re doing, and five more instructors by next Tuesday. Luckily, Mike, a wandering ski instructor, is willing to help out.
Even though Mike planned to stay for only a few weeks to ski for the first time in Scotland, and he had only been planning to work at White Cairns for a few weeks, he agrees to stay for the season when Jude’s husband leaves her hanging. With his help, they are able to hire six new instructors for the season, and Jude gets enough confidence to fax a proposal to a private school looking for ski lessons, and gets a new major client. Even though the school is facing bankruptcy and the owner is away, Jude has hope of making it all work as the snow starts to fall.
I liked this story. It was quick and entertaining. It played out in my head like a movie, especially the part where the new ski instructors were introduced. There was plenty of showing and not a lot of telling, which I prefer, and for the most part the characters were interesting. There were a few things that were predictable though, like when they were choosing the new ski instructors. It was obvious that Debbie, the girl with self-confidence issues was going to be picked, and that Pamela was going to get cut. I also figured that Colin wasn’t going to be gone for good. And, considering that this is the first installment of a series, I think there is a little too much development of the sexual tension and relationships. There’s not a lot of guessing as to who is going to end up with whom.
But I liked it for what it is– an entertaining read. I would even be willing to look into the sequels to see how it all plays out. I think this is a good book for anyone who likes dramas, and I think teenagers would enjoy this book, especially those in favor of Glee, Degrassi, and Gossip Girl (if you’re looking for ways to get your kid to read more ;))