Author: Jenny Hale

Holiday Reviews: Season of Wonder, Christmas on Mistletoe Lane, and It Started with Christmas

Posted December 24, 2018 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: Season of Wonder, Christmas on Mistletoe Lane, and It Started with Christmas

Story ASK ME HOW PUMPED I AM FOR NEW HAVEN POINT BOOKS! (Very excited, obviously.) I love this town. I heard a few mixed things about this main character and the story as a whole, but I knew the small town Haven Point feels would make up for a lot. The lead, Diana, has two girls – one bratty teenager and one adorable six-year-old, and she moved everyone to Haven Point to hopefully run the town’s veterinary practice. She can’t resist her cop neighbor and he seemingly can’t resist her either, especially as he helps the aforementioned annoying teen daughter make up for some mistakes. This one was a bit repetitive with Dani’s internal dialogue, going back and forth all the time. She was an okay lead character but a little too hard to get to know. She was closed off to everyone, including the reader. Ruben was amazing though; the scenes with him and her kids were adorable. Mia was the cutest and Silver was a bratty teen that got better with time. I also think the big “reveal” about her ex-husband wasn’t as bad as expected? Maybe that’s terrible to say given the nature of it, but still – they built it up quite a bit. I definitely missed the cameos here too… not as many as I’d hoped because Dani refused to become a part of the town. I hope the next book, if there is one, features more of actual Haven Point and its residents. Wintry Setting […]

Holiday Reviews: We’ll Always Have Christmas and The Afterlife of Holly Chase

Posted December 24, 2017 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
Holiday Reviews: We’ll Always Have Christmas and The Afterlife of Holly Chase

Story Tis the season for my favorite holiday author! I always wait until it’s VERY close to Christmas to embark on my Jenny Hale book of the year, because they’re usually the most atmospheric. This one was a little different, which I’ll get into later. Noelle takes on a new job helping an elderly man in a local mansion while trying to fix up her family’s bakery to improve business. She falls for Alex, the man’s grandson, while staying there with her son. She has mixed feelings because Alex is the landlord for the bakery and is the one “pushing them out” with higher rent. Noelle has close friends, Phoebe and Jo, and a tight-knit family between her parents, grandfather, and sister. It was a  really well-rounded story, even if some of the plot pieces were kind of annoying. There was a whole side thing that I predicted earlier with the grandfather’s lost ~first love~ and the fact that Noelle was thinking of moving to LA with Phoebe. The second thing there wasn’t needed in the story and took up an unnecessary amount of her headspace. The first one made sense even if it was predictable. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels I feel like this is the first time I’ve given a Jenny Hale book less than “full-on holiday cheer” on my cheer-o-meter. The book takes place in the month or two leading up to Christmas, so there were bits of the holiday sprinkled throughout. The cozy bakery setting and […]

Holiday ARC Review: All I Want for Christmas

Posted December 22, 2016 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
Holiday ARC Review: All I Want for Christmas

Basics and Initial Excitement Every year I’ve come to look forward to Jenny Hale’s newest Christmas story. I’ll be the first to tell you that they’re formulaic (especially when you’ve read all of her Christmas stories), often predictable, and cheesy in some parts. But honestly, what good Hallmark or Lifetime Christmas movie isn’t all of those things?! These books put me in the Christmas mood like no others and I am so happy to read them each year. I read this one in two settings within the course of 12 hours and I have no regrets. Characters and Story The setup for this one is somewhat similar to her others, but had some welcome twists to the norm. Leah and her daughter Sadie grew up with and loved Leah’s Nan. She owned a huge plantation where she would host events and the girls would spend time together. When Nan dies unexpectedly, Leah is not surprised to see that she was willed the plantation. However, she IS surprised to see a twist – a man from her childhood, David, is living there and was ALSO willed the mansion. When Leah, Sadie, and Leah’s family and friends trickle in for one last Christmas, sparks fly and the two have to figure out how to move forward with the mansion. I really loved getting to know Leah, Sadie, David, and Leah’s friends (Roz and Louise). They had great bonds with each other. David was incredibly kind and at times, a little too perfect. I […]

Holiday Review: Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses

Posted December 11, 2015 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Holiday Review: Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses

This month I’ll be highlighting different holiday or Christmas-oriented books on the blog. I love reading based on the season, so stay tuned for more wintery reviews. To learn more about what’s coming and my holiday book rating system, check here! My holidays would not be complete without a Jenny Hale Christmas story. I’ve read her two other Christmas books and loved them so much. This year I was provided an ARC from the publisher and had to resist digging in right away. These books are SO EFFING CHRISTMASSY that it would be best suited for the beginning of December, when I want to jolt my Christmas spirit for the month. Of course, it delivered in every way I hoped. I’ll be completely honest when I say that Hale’s holiday stories are formulaic. There’s a girl who starts to work for or help out a workaholic millionaire around the holidays – maybe she moves into his house for a ~reason~ – and they start to fall in love. So far, all three books have followed this general formula. However, in the same way that all AC/DC songs sound the same, I love them all equally and don’t even care if they’re a bit too similar. They’re all perfect. Plus, if you read one once a year, you’re not likely to get sick of a similar story. So, as usual, I loved this one. Abbey was a great protagonist, and her son Max was even better. I loved the family feels […]

Holiday Review: Coming Home for Christmas

Posted December 22, 2014 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Holiday Review: Coming Home for Christmas

I’m going to try a new kind of review occasionally, where I make notes as I read and use them as a quick review of the book! Here’s my first go at this. I’m seeing a lot of similarities between this book and the previous Christmas book I’ve read by Jenny Hale. The main characters have similar personalities, are dealing with somewhat similar situations with the love interest, the love interests have similar personalities to each other, etc. I like it though; she’s really mastered this kind of story. It’s interesting reading this book AFTER A Christmas to Remember, because Allie and Robert were featured in that book and it takes place after this one. It’s nice to know where they’re headed actually. There was a slight difference that just came up… I won’t spoil anything too much, but be warned it could be heading into somewhat-love-triangle territory. I actually feel like I’m reading about the same main character in some ways. In ACTR, the narrator was incredibly self-conscious and anxious, which annoyed me a lot, but she still (eventually) stuck up for herself and just told her employer exactly what she was thinking. Allie, in this book, is not really anxious or self-conscious, but goes through the same things with her employer – she calls him on his bullshit. I like it, because they’re strong and just do what they want, but I can’t help feeling like it’s a little too similar to me. The love triangle situation is […]

Holiday Review: A Christmas to Remember

Posted December 12, 2014 / Book Reviews / 7 Comments
Holiday Review: A Christmas to Remember

I have a feeling my review for this book is going to be a jumbled mess of feels because that’s essentially what A Christmas to Remember gave me. There was one major thing that REALLY bugged me throughout the book, but the end result / everything else throughout the book was just so damn PERFECT that I have to give this a great rating and recommendation. Let me get out of the way quickly what bugged me about the book. The main character, Carrie, was an anxious mess. This was FINE. I’ve just never experienced a book where the MC is so incredibly self-conscious, anxious, nervous, and unsure of herself. People out there certainly have these thoughts, so it was definitely a different but realistic perspective for me. I also sensed that there would be some major character growth throughout the story as a result. She’s spent her whole life as a nanny, which she loves, but she’s put her social/romantic life on hold as a result. She spends the vast majority of the book weighing the pros and cons of EVERYTHING, changing her mind a million times, and contradicting herself a lot. She would say how she needed to stop nannying to move on with her life, then one chapter later she would say that she loved it too much to stop, and then she’d be back on planning to quit. There was constant back-and-forth in her head. It got annoying, but I think it just went along with […]