Genre: Holiday

Holiday Reviews: The Twelve Days of Dash and Lily, Snowfall on Lighthouse Lane, and Snow In Love

Posted December 21, 2018 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: The Twelve Days of Dash and Lily, Snowfall on Lighthouse Lane, and Snow In Love

Story I’ll keep it real – I did not love Dash and Lily as much as everyone else (and any good feelings that led me to rate it four stars have definitely faded over time for some reason). I like to eventually finish things I start though, so I decided to give the sequel a shot. It’s a short book and therefore a short audiobook; I thought it’d be the perfect one to listen to during the Tis the Season-a-thon in early December. I really loathe Lily because of her immaturity and Dash is so pretentious. It’s hard to ship a couple when one of them feels like they’re 10 years old and shouldn’t be in a serious relationship. Speaking of which, how is it possible that after a year of dating, they’re in the exact same place they were in the previous book/year? They did not communicate at all and it’s frustrating to see that they were still dancing around things. I would hope dating someone for that long would open you up a bit. Aside from that, they were constantly running to catch up to each other (so to speak). They were never on the same page. Wintry Setting & Holiday Feels The story was mostly depressing with some holiday feels involved? It happens in the 12 days before Christmas, which should bring about the most Christmassy feels possible. While being in NYC for Christmas is the last thing I want to do because of the crowds, I absolutely […]

ARC Reviews: Kiss Me in Paris and Sadie

Posted August 24, 2018 / Book Reviews / 1 Comment
ARC Reviews: Kiss Me in Paris and Sadie

I didn’t fully think about the fact that KISS ME IN PARIS was actually a holiday story when I started reading it, so it quickly became a “Christmas in July” kind of read. I usually don’t enjoy reading Christmassy books outside of November or December but I made an exception for the sake of my Goodreads challenge (and yes my Netgalley percentage, okay). I was dying to read something short, quick, and sweet, and I determined this would fit the bill. I loved the idea that the main character, Serena, would be retracing her parents’ steps when they first fell in love in Paris. The synopsis implied some good ol’ hate-to-love romance too, as the guy she has to stay with (Jean-Luc) isn’t overly happy about her arrival. The story happens over the course of one night, which I also love. Some of my issues were surrounding the romance. The first thing, kind of related to that, is that the book is very short – just barely over 200 pages. This almost puts it in novella territory and I tend to struggle with rushed romances. Another issue with the romance was that the couple spent quite a bit of time either focusing on an ex (Jean-Luc) or debating a new-ish flame from home (Serena). I understand creating some conflict for the sake of a story but I just didn’t get on board with actually shipping the couple as a result. There was too much time in their heads thinking about […]

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 Reviews: My New Crush Gave to Me and Winter Solstice

Posted December 15, 2017 / Book Reviews / 8 Comments
Holiday Reviews: My New Crush Gave to Me and Winter Solstice

Story I was really hoping for something cute and Christmassy, which I got in some ways. Unfortunately I spent most of the book incredibly frustrated by the clueless yet often bitchy and domineering main character. I like predictable holiday stories because they’re comforting but there was literally no surprise for any element of the plot. By a quarter of the way through the book, I knew every detail about how it was going to end. The side characters were fun and nice people who definitely put up with Charlie FAR longer than I would have. Her best friend was too understanding but it helped that there wasn’t a best-friend-fight subplot. The general storyline is that she is determined (with absolutely no actual evidence) that Teo is the perfect boyfriend for her, so she stops at nothing to make this happen… and I mean nothing. She refuses to see any kind of sign that maybe he’s not the right guy for her and ignores the compelling evidence that perhaps someone else is. I definitely wanted to give her a swift kick in the ass 99% of the time, which doesn’t make for the most fun holiday read. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels The book took place in Connecticut, which I love, but they didn’t really make it a point to reference that too much. The main character has (in the past) loved Christmas and she celebrates pretty hard with her mom when she’s not working. (I literally can’t even remember if […]

Holiday Mini Reviews: Winter Storms and What Light

Posted December 24, 2016 / Book Reviews / 1 Comment
Holiday Mini Reviews: Winter Storms and What Light

Story Winter Street swept me away pretty quickly for some reason. I was instantly intrigued by the Quinn family and wanted to get to know all of them. Once I finished with the bit of a cliffhanger, I moved on fairly quickly to Winter Stroll. The characters, over the course of the year between stories, regressed so much. They went back on decisions they already made and then made stupid ones. I didn’t like it nearly as much, but you know I was ready for the final book in the WINTER trilogy to arrive at the library. It unexpectedly did last week, so I was quick to hop right into it to finish it off. This book was definitely worse than the first one but better than the second one. I was incredibly annoyed by Ava mostly, with her love triangle that turned into a square. (Yep.)  I thought she became much snootier and more guarded than necessary. I think her character “developed” in the wrong direction. The other characters were their usual selves and I didn’t mind them as much. I love where the story went for Kevin and Isabelle, Margaret and Drake, and somewhat for Patrick and Jennifer. The ending was very abrupt and I kind of hated it. I think things were left too open-ended for my liking.  So, there was some good closure with a few characters but not all of them. Wintery Setting and Holiday Feels This story was interesting because it started in the spring […]

Holiday Book Buddies: Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless

Posted December 23, 2016 / Book Buddies Reviews, Book Reviews / 6 Comments
Holiday Book Buddies: Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless

Book Buddies is a discussion-style “review” that takes place with Cristina from Girl in the Pages. (You can check out past posts here.) We both read the book, have a discussion, and post our conversation (plus other fun things sometimes!) here. Book Buddies is a seasonal feature that now happens four times per year. Be sure to check out the other half of our feature and discussion on Cristina’s blog (link below)! Check out Cristina’s post here! We’ve decided to bring some new elements into our Book Buddies posts, so it will be less Q&A discussion between the two of us, and more personal applications to the book. Because this book featured a bunch of lists the main character keeps in her head, we decided to channel the same thing for our post! The lists below are generally related to the book too. Chloe gets stuck at work in a grocery store on Christmas Eve, so you’ll see some place and food-related questions below! 5 Things About This Book This book made me so nostalgic for my grocery store days. I worked at Geissler’s Supermarket, a family-owned chain only in Connecticut and Massachussets, throughout the end of high school and beginning of college (on breaks). This book is incredibly accurate for what it’s like to work in a grocery store, from scheduling breaks to weird relationships with coworkers to having to work on Christmas Eve. Chloe and her coworkers were a bit presumptuous. I didn’t like so many of the assumptions they made about fellow […]

Holiday Review: Decked with Holly

Posted December 23, 2015 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Holiday Review: Decked with Holly

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! Buddy Read with Rachel from Go Read A Book When Rachel reached out asking if I wanted to Buddy Read, I happily agreed! Then, of course, I messed up the date we were supposed to post and we ended up just having a casual Google Hangouts chat! She’s posting her review today as well, and we wanted to keep it informal. We both agreed that this book wasn’t the best, but was cute enough to read. Rachel gave it 3 stars and I was a little more generous with 3.5 stars 😉 We started out with how we both generally liked Dominic, but I had some reservations. In hate-to-love romances, there’s always some tension and dislike towards the beginning. He took it a little too far, with commenting nonstop about her appearance. She looked bad when they first met because she was seasick. He also jumped to a lot of conclusions about her right away and didn’t strike me as the sharpest tool in the shed. Lauren: It kind of bothered me how he didn’t seem to like Holly and judged her appearance for a long time. I’m a fan of the hate-to-love romance trope, but I don’t like that he was kind of mean about her. It took adding […]

Holiday Review: Icing on the Lake

Posted December 7, 2015 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Holiday Review: Icing on the Lake

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! I had literally no idea what to expect from this book. I couldn’t track down a real synopsis for the life of me. I knew it was one of those HarperTeen books from back in my high school days; they tend to read like a romantic comedy. Early contemporary romance YA, I suppose. I really enjoyed Snowed In last year, which I imagined was quite similar. I remember getting these types of books out from the library after school and reading them in the library. Anyways, the book is about a girl (Kirsten) who goes to stay with her young divorcee sister and her son, because she hurt her leg or something. She is somehow able to live there for a month or two while her sister heals. She’s just… not attending high school, but is able to work on an independent project for the month instead. Pretty not realistic, but okay. Basically she gets involved with some ~boys~ because she wants to bring one to a weekend away with her friends. →  A few highlights because I really don’t know what to say: The writing and dialogue felt super awkward (especially the “banter”) Lots of characters were fleetingly introduced at the beginning and I couldn’t keep her friends straight […]

Book Buddies Holiday Review: My True Love Gave to Me

Posted December 25, 2014 / Book Buddies Reviews, Book Reviews / 4 Comments
Book Buddies Holiday Review: My True Love Gave to Me

Book Buddies is a discussion-style review that takes place with one of my two buddies. (Learn more and see past reviews here) We both read the book and then have a private discussion about it. We post our discussion as a review on the last Wednesday of each month. You’ll be able to see our similar/different opinions on the overall book, characters, writing style, etc. – just like a regular review. Half our discussion will take place right here, and the other half will be on Cristina’s blog! (Link at the bottom) For this particular review, because it included short stories, we alternated the stories between the two of us and shared our thoughts on all of them. Because of that, I’m featuring six stories but will share my overall rating for the other six stories at the bottom of the page. Overall Thoughts I absolutely loved reading this anthology. There were quite a few stories that left me wanting more, for different reasons. Some of them had such great characters that I would have loved a full story with them. Others felt kind of rushed or unfinished, which unfortunately can happen with short stories. They would have benefited from a few more pages for characterization, wrapping up the stories, or just better developing it overall. Regardless, I would highly recommend this collection of short stories to anyone who enjoys the Christmas season. At the bottom of my post, you can see some of my story recommendations! Discussion #2- The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link […]

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 […]