Genre: Holiday

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 […]

Holiday Review: Snowed In

Posted December 19, 2014 / Book Reviews / 7 Comments
Holiday Review: Snowed In

Let me start out by saying that this is a very cute winter read. I’m not sure why I chose it for my “holiday reads” this season because realistically I could have read  this in January and enjoyed it too. The holidays weren’t even mentioned, which was fine! It did a good job of putting me in the mood for snow. (Good thing, too, because the morning I finished this book I woke up to snow coming down.) This book made me feel pretty nostalgic. I used to go to the library all the time after school, before I could drive, and read old-school paperbacks from the young adult section. You know the kind – they’re small, have pretty big font that takes up the entire page, and were more than likely broken on the spine. This book (and Love on the Lifts, which is coming up here soon) just have that old feel to them. And I loved that! Unfortunately I had this one figured out about a quarter of the way through. I’m not entirely surprised because it felt like it would be quite predictable, but it was definitely one where I didn’t mind the predictability. It was really cute, had some nice characters, and an overall great general concept. I think that’s what I liked most about it – the setting and how that fed into the overall plot of the book. Ashleigh and her mother move from Texas to a small island up north, where they decide […]

Holiday Review: Mistletoe

Posted December 15, 2014 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Holiday Review: Mistletoe

This compilation has been on my TBR for a loooong time. The authors in this one are some that I read back in middle school/early high school and haven’t really heard from since. Regardless, I was excited to embark on these stories. I wish I could say that I was impressed, but I definitely wasn’t. Most of the stories were juvenile and superficial. They definitely were not “delectable tales of love and lust” or “juicy” or “steamy.” They were all really bland and I’m sad. I certainly rounded up in my rating because I tried not to let the one story’s DNF affect the other ratings. Working in a Winter Wonderland by Aimee Friedman  I feel like I’m being generous with this rating, but I guess the story was pretty entertaining throughout. The main character, Maxine, is a Jewish girl who gets a Christmas-related job in a department store. Seems like a kind of weird way to start a Christmas anthology, no? A girl who doesn’t even celebrate Christmas? The main thing that bugged me about this story was how transparent it was. I predicted what was going to happen completely. That’s okay with me sometimes, but I didn’t get a lot from the characters or really even learn anything from the story. It felt rushed (even more so than short stories normally do). The love interest throughout the story, Heath, really rubbed me the wrong way. A lot of the story was wasted on him when he was a […]

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 […]

Holiday Review: Let It Snow

Posted December 8, 2014 / Book Reviews / 7 Comments
Holiday Review: Let It Snow

Let It Snow is a compilation of three interconnected stories. I’ll review them each separately, then include an overall rating and my thoughts! The Jubilee Express by Maureen Johnson  I absolutely LOVED the main character of this story, Jubilee. She was funny and adorable. The writing style was very quirky and definitely made me LOL at times. I immediately looked for other books by Maureen Johnson as I was reading this one. The story was certainly very predictable, but I didn’t care. I also LOOOVED Stuart, our main boy. He was adorable, smart, and just seemed like an all-around great guy. I would totally read this as a full-length story just to get more of these characters! The ending was adorable but it definitely left me wanting more. I think it was a good ending , but I would seriously love to see more of these two and what happens next. I can’t think of really anything I disliked about this one. It’s almost hard to review because you would have to read it yourself to really get how fun and interesting Stuart and Jubilee were. A Cheertastic Christmas Miracle by John Green  Oh John Green, you never cease to amaze me. A lot of reviewers seemed somewhat disappointed by this story, so I was a little nervous, but I ended up really enjoying it. It’s been a while since I’ve read John Green (I’ve read all of his books, but last read TFIOS the year it came out. Due for […]