Review: The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand

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Title: The Afterlife of Holly Chase
Author: Cynthia Hand
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: October 24, 2017
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): On Christmas Eve five years ago, Holly was visited by three ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she’d become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways.

She didn’t.

And then she died.

Now she’s stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge–as the latest Ghost of Christmas Past.

Every year, they save another miserly grouch. Every year, Holly stays frozen at seventeen while her family and friends go on living without her. So far, Holly’s afterlife has been miserable.

But this year, everything is about to change. . . .

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

The Afterlife of Holly Chase truly surprised me. This is an original story based on the classic A Christmas Carol where the main character works for a company trying to save Scrooges every year. I found the main character to be likeable, even though she is intended to be dislikable, and I loved reading about the secrets at Project Scrooge. This is such a festive book that will definitely get the reader in the Christmas spirit.

This book has such an original concept! Basically, a spoiled rich girl is killed and wakes up to learn that she is the new Ghost of Christmas Past. Frozen in time, she must work for an organization dedicated to changing the ways of modern Scrooges for the better. I really enjoyed the complexity of Holly’s afterlife and how believable Project Scrooge is. The book is also witty, making it more fun than a typical retelling of A Christmas Carol.

Normally, I am not a fan of dislikable characters, purposeful or not, but I actually really enjoyed Holly’s character. She starts off pretty snobby, and is actually a failed Scrooge, but she really transforms as the story progresses. Holly’s snarky attitude and witty retorts are hilarious, and I loved her sass. She is also pretty daring and willing to do whatever it takes to follow her heart, which is such a nice characteristic.

What I most enjoyed about The Afterlife of Holly Chase is the fact that it isn’t a generic retelling of A Christmas Carol. It takes the idea of the original story and creates something entirely new. Every character assumes the role of one of the classic characters for the mission every year, and the book focuses more on the behind the scenes work at Project Scrooge. Also, the main character isn’t actually Scrooge, which I thought was a nice twist. This book is unlike any A Christmas Carol retelling you will ever read, and I would definitely recommend it this holiday season.

The Afterlife of Holly Chase is an inventive story based on A Christmas Carol. I loved the sassy main character and the various twists on the original story. If you are looking for something different to read this winter, this is the perfect book to pick up.

 

ARC Review: Prince in Disguise by Stephanie Kate Strohm

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Title: Prince in Disguise
Author: Stephanie Kate Strohm
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Publication Date: December 19, 2017
Stars: 4.5/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Someday I want to live in a place where I never hear “You’re Dusty’s sister?” ever again.
Life is real enough for Dylan—especially as the ordinary younger sister of Dusty, former Miss Mississippi and the most perfect, popular girl in Tupelo. But when Dusty wins the hand of the handsome Scottish laird-to-be Ronan on the TRC television network’s crown jewel, Prince in Disguise, Dylan has to face a different kind of reality: reality TV.

As the camera crew whisks them off to Scotland to film the lead-up to the wedding, camera-shy Dylan is front and center as Dusty’s maid of honor. The producers are full of surprises—including old family secrets, long-lost relatives, and a hostile future mother-in-law who thinks Dusty and Dylan’s family isn’t good enough for her only son. At least there’s Jamie, an adorably bookish groomsman who might just be the perfect antidote to all Dylan’s stress . . . if she just can keep TRC from turning her into the next reality show sensation.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

I am always a sucker for books about royalty, so I knew I would love Prince in Disguise the moment I saw it. This story is all about a reality TV show set in Scotland and contains a likeable main character. This book makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside, making it perfect for the winter.

This book has such an original concept! The main character’s sister is getting married to a (barely) prince, and the wedding and the planning are all being aired on a reality TV show. Dylan wants nothing to do with the cameras and the fake reactions, but she has to deal with them as her sister’s maid of honour. The plot thickens as the production crew uncovers some of her secrets and turns her life into the subplot of the show. I enjoyed how the book portrayed life as a reality TV star and shows how hard it is to have everything about you shown on screen. I really sympathized with Dylan and her strict contract.

Since Dylan’s sister marries Scottish royalty, the wedding is set in Scotland. I haven’t read too many books set there, but I would definitely love to see more. I adored the descriptions of the castle and its secret passageways and the frequent use of Scottish slang. There is also some traditional Scottish dancing and food, which was so interesting to read about. After reading this book, I would definitely like to go visit Scotland.

I enjoyed Dylan’s character in Prince in Disguise. She has a sense of humour and is pretty sarcastic. She also has a strong relationship with her sister, and they stick up for one another. I loved how Dylan wants to make her sister happy on her special day and is supportive of her decisions, even if they aren’t what she would have done. Dylan is just such a relatable character, and reading about her misadventures is so entertaining.

Prince in Disguise is a witty and adorable story set in picturesque Scotland. I loved the main character and the bond between sisters. If you enjoyed books like The Selection, you will love this one!

I received an e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

ARC Review: Three Sides of a Heart by Natalie C. Parker (editor)

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Title: Three Sides of a Heart
Authors: Natalie C. Parker (editor)
Publisher: HarperCollins
Publication Date: December 19, 2017
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): You may think you know the love triangle, but you’ve never seen love triangles like these.

These top YA authors tackle the much-debated trope of the love triangle, and the result is sixteen fresh, diverse, and romantic stories you don’t want to miss.

This collection, edited by Natalie C. Parker, contains stories written by Renee Ahdieh, Rae Carson, Brandy Colbert, Katie Cotugno, Lamar Giles, Tessa Gratton, Bethany Hagan, Justina Ireland, Alaya Dawn Johnson, EK Johnston, Julie Murphy, Garth Nix, Natalie C. Parker, Veronica Roth, Sabaa Tahir, and Brenna Yovanoff.

A teen girl who offers kissing lessons. Zombies in the Civil War South. The girl next door, the boy who loves her, and the girl who loves them both. Vampires at a boarding school. Three teens fighting monsters in an abandoned video rental store. Literally the last three people on the planet.

What do all these stories have in common?

The love triangle.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

Three Sides of a Heart is an anthology not to be missed. These sixteen short stories by some of my favourite authors each put a spin on the classic love triangle trope. There is definitely something for everyone, and it might even change your opinion on love triangles.

I love the concept of this anthology! The love triangle gets a lot of hate in YA, but honestly, I can appreciate one that is well-executed. Three Sides of a Heart takes this trope and twists it, giving the reader a whole new perspective. There is something from every genre with all kinds of pairings, and many of my favourite authors have contributed stories. Even if you loathe love triangles, I would still recommend this anthology, as there is so much to it that you are bound to find something you like.

My favourite of the stories was Sabaa Tahir’s Waiting. One of the love interests is in jail, which isn’t common in YA, and the story features letters between him and the main character, which I always love. The main character is strong and sassy, and there is actually a bit of humour, which I appreciated. Waiting is such an emotional story that is so well-written, and I would definitely read a full book with its plot.

I also really enjoyed Renée Ahdieh’s La Revancha del Tango. This story is set in Buenos Aires and is all about the tango. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book about the tango before, so I found the originality to be refreshing. Unus, Duo, Tres by Bethany Hagen intrigued me as well. I’m not really a fan of vampire stories, but the emotion and plot twists kept me captivated.

Three Sides of a Heart is an anthology focusing on love triangles. There are many excellent works in this book, but I especially enjoyed Sabaa Tahir’s contribution. There is so much diversity and so many different genres, so I would absolutely recommend this one.

* I received an ARC from HCC Frenzy’s Frenzy Presents in exchange for an honest review.

Review: Kissing Snowflakes by Abby Sher

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Title: Kissing Snowflakes
Author: Abby Sher
Publisher: Point
Publication Date: November 1, 2007
Stars: 3/5

Summary (from Goodreads): This fun, sweet, wintertime book is filled with humor and romance. The picturesque mountain ski lodge is the perfect place to spend winter break if you have a boyfriend! Otherwise, that cozy leather couch in front of the crackling fire looks a lot less inviting. Good thing that there are lots of cute, blond, sweater-wearing ski instructors around to choose from.

Goodreads | Amazon

Kissing Snowflakes is a wintry drama with plenty of skiing. The more serious topics in the book balanced out the fluff, and the resort setting is so peaceful. However, I found the main character to be dislikable, so I didn’t enjoy this one as much as I had hoped.

This book tells the story of a ski trip celebrating the remarriage of the main character’s dad. On the trip, Sam meets a cute ski instructor and finds herself falling for him. However, the more time she spends with him, the more she realizes that he might not be the one for her. I loved the resort setting and the relaxing winter break vibes. There is also a good mix of drama and fluff. I was actually surprised to see topics like divorce discussed in the story, since books like this one aren’t typically too heavy. Kissing Snowflakes is overall super cosy and perfect for the winter.

I didn’t really like Sam’s character. I found her to be too clingy and naive, and the way she acts can be so immature. I also didn’t like the way she treats her best friend from home and how she doesn’t even give her stepmom a chance. Some of Sam’s actions are understandable, but most of them are pretty frustrating. I would have preferred if she was more considerate and listened.

Kissing Snowflakes is a cute and wintry read filled with skiing and drama. I enjoyed the relaxing resort setting, but the main character didn’t satisfy me. I would still recommend this one, though it would be better suited for those new to the YA genre.

Book to Movie Review: Wonder by R.J. Palacio

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Don’t Judge a Book by its Movie is a feature on The Candid Cover spotlighting and reviewing book to movie adaptations. 

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Author: R.J. Palacio
Publisher: Knopf
Cast: Jacob Tremblay, Owen Wilson, Izabela Vidovic, Julia Roberts
Director: Stephen Chbosky
Screenplay: Stephen Chbosky, Steve Conrad, Jack Thorne

Summary (From Goodreads): I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.

August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?

R. J. Palacio has written a spare, warm, uplifting story that will have readers laughing one minute and wiping away tears the next. With wonderfully realistic family interactions (flawed, but loving), lively school scenes, and short chapters, Wonder is accessible to readers of all levels.

Goodreads | Amazon

I haven’t read many middle grade novels in quite a while, and I have to admit that this is the first one that brought big tears to my eyes. Wonder is a one-of-a-kind book that deals with bullying in a way that is honest, raw, and eye-opening. The writing is crisp and witty, and the multiple perspectives really help to give the reader a deep understanding of all the sides to the story. Amazingly, the film is just as wonderful, and although it is a condensed version of the original, it maintains the original themes that Palacio has inspired her readers with.

Wonder has been one of those books that has been sitting on my TBR forever, and when the movie details were announced, I knew that the time had come to finally crack it open. For years I have heard nothing but praise for the messages and themes included in the novel, and I am pleased to say that the accolades given to this middle grade novel are well-deserved. It really is a book that can be enjoyed by everyone. The different points of view add to this effect, as there are so many generations of characters in this book. Auggie is such a fantastically developed character, and his perseverance in spite of all the adversity he faces is admirable. It is hard not to fall in love with him and his hilarious outlook on life.

Fans of the novel will most likely be very pleased that the story is very closely mirrored in the movie version. Albeit there are certain things that have been altered and twisted a little to bring it to the screen, but it in no way changes the outcome of the narrative. Jacob Tremblay is a perfect Auggie, and it is impressive how he seems to be able to really get into the role of such a multi-layered character.

Is the book better than the movie? Of course! However, if you are a fan of the book, you will not be disappointed. This is one story not to be missed whether you read it or see it.

Review: Snow in Love by Claire Ray

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Title: Snow in Love
Author: Claire Ray
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: December 23, 2008
Stars: 4/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Welcome to Alaska!

A special welcome to my boyfriend, Jake, the cutest tourist I’ve ever met!

Explore our natural beauties and untouched wilderness.

Jake and I like to hike our great (romantic!) nature trails. . . .

Enjoy our perfect skiing and snowboarding conditions.

Be sure to catch Will Parker doing his snowboarding tricks. He makes all the girls in town melt. (Except for me. Who needs Will when you’ve got Jake?)

Experience our world-class resorts and spas.

While you’re there, find out what’s up with that hot girl Jake brought to the lodge this year. She’s probably just his cousin or something. Right?!

Get ready for a vacation you’ll never forget!

Goodreads | Amazon

Snow in Love is a cute and festive story that also has a fair bit of drama. The Alaskan setting is absolutely perfect, and I enjoyed the relatable main character. This is a cute and fluffy holiday read that is he perfect thing to curl up with this winter.

This book tells the story of a girl whose boyfriend shows up in her town with a new girlfriend. In an attempt to make him jealous, she starts hanging out with another guy and ends up starting to fall for him. I loved the Alaskan setting, especially since I haven’t read too many books set there. Snow in Love makes Alaska seem like the ultimate winter destination, and I would definitely love to go there after reading it. The plot is pretty clichéd, but honestly, I like that sort of thing in fluffy holiday reads.

I enjoyed Jessie’s character in the book. She works at the ice cream parlour that her parents run, and she’s so relatable. I liked the way she deals with the mean girls in town, and she has a great group of friends. Jessie’s cluelessness and naiveté did get a bit frustrating at times, but overall, she entertained me.

Snow in Love is a short and sweet book that is perfect for the holidays. I loved the wintry setting and the female friendships in the story. There were certain aspects that didn’t impress me, but I still found this one pretty cute.

ARC Review: Instructions for a Secondhand Heart by Tamsyn Murray

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Title: Instructions for a Secondhand Heart
Author: Tamsyn Murray
Publisher: Poppy
Publication Date: December 5, 2017
Stars: 3/5

Summary (from Goodreads): A moving novel about grief, guilt, and the unpredictability of love, for fans of Everything, Everything and All the Bright Places.

Jonny knows better than anyone that life is full of cruel ironies. He’s spent every day in a hospital hooked up to machines to keep his heart ticking. Then when a donor match is found for Jonny’s heart, that turns out to be the cruelest irony of all. Because for Jonny’s life to finally start, someone else’s had to end.

That someone turns out to be Neve’s twin brother, Leo. When Leo was alive, all Neve wanted was for him (and all his glorious, overshadowing perfection) to leave. Now that Leo’s actually gone forever, Neve has no idea how to move forward. Then Jonny walks into her life looking for answers, her brother’s heart beating in his chest, and everything starts to change.

Together, Neve and Jonny will have to face the future, no matter how frightening it is, while also learning to heal their hearts, no matter how much it hurts.

(Features select illustrations from “Jonny’s” sketchbook.)

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

I’m not sure what to think about Instructions for a Secondhand Heart. I enjoyed the concept, but not the characterization. I also found certain aspects of the book to be kind of creepy, and I didn’t enjoy the romance. This book had so much potential, but I ended up pretty disappointed.

This book has such an original concept! It tells the story of a boy who receives a heart transplant and befriends the sister of his donor. Neve is dealing with the grief of her brother’s death, and Jonny is dealing with the guilt of getting a second chance at life while his friend is still battling cancer. I enjoyed how the narration alternates between Jonny and Neve, allowing the reader to understand Jonny’s reasons for wanting to know more about his donor and Neve’s regrets from the day her twin brother died. The story is pretty complex and is definitely a whirlwind of emotions.

I’m not quite sure how I feel about Jonny’s character. I sympathized with him, and the challenges he faces are so real, but I found his actions to be kind of creepy. I understand his curiosity, but tracking Neve down and lying about the reason why is a bit unsettling. He shows up at a fundraiser she attends and sends her messages on Facebook, all while hiding his true relation to her and his motive. Even when he and Neve become friends, Jonny always seems to lead her on, and the constant back-and-forth got kind of annoying. I also didn’t enjoy Neve’s character very much. She is a bit whiny and gets overly jealous without knowing the full story. I would have enjoyed the book a lot more if the characters had been easier to connect with.

My main reason for not loving this book is the subtle creepiness, but I also didn’t enjoy the romance. It seemed a bit unnecessary, and I would have preferred if Jonny and Neve had stayed as friends instead. Their forced relationship takes away from the impact of the story in my opinion, and the love triangle is kind of pointless. Instructions for a Secondhand Heart would have been much better without all the extraneous drama.

Instructions for a Secondhand Heart is an intriguing story about grief and a second chance at life. I have mixed feelings about the main characters, and I just couldn’t really connect with them. Jonny’s borderline creepy actions and the forced romance take away from the story, and I definitely feel like the book could have been better.

I received an e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

ARC Review: The Chaos of Standing Still by Jessica Brody

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Title: The Chaos of Standing Still
Author: Jessica Brody
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: November 28, 2017
Stars: 3/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Over the course of one chaotic night stranded at the Denver airport, Ryn confronts her shattered past thanks to the charm of romance, the uniqueness of strangers, and the magic of ordinary places in this stunning novel from the author of Boys of Summer.

Ryn has one unread text message on her phone. And it’s been there for almost a year.

She hasn’t tried to read it. She can’t. She won’t. Because that one message is the last thing her best friend ever said to her before she died.

But as Ryn finds herself trapped in the Denver International Airport on New Year’s Eve thanks to a never-ending blizzard on the one-year anniversary of her best friend’s death, fate literally runs into her.

And his name is Xander.

When the two accidentally swap phones, Ryn and Xander are thrust into the chaos of an unforgettable all-night adventure, filled with charming and mysterious strangers, a secret New Year’s Eve bash, and a possible Illuminati conspiracy hidden within the Denver airport. But as the bizarre night continues, all Ryn can think about is that one unread text message. It follows her wherever she goes, because Ryn can’t get her brialliantly wild and free-spirited best friend out of her head.

Ryn can’t move on.

But tonight, for the first time ever, she’s trying. And maybe that’s a start.

As moving as it is funny, The Chaos of Standing Still is a heartwarming story about the earth-shattering challenges life throws at us—and the unexpected strangers who help us along the way.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

The Chaos of Standing still drew me in right from the start. It is the story of a girl stranded in an airport, but with a twist. There are so many interesting side characters and some super cute moments throughout the book. While I enjoyed the story, I found the constant interruptions for flashbacks to get annoying, and I wish I could have enjoyed it more.

This book is cute, funny, and heart-wrenching all at once. It tells the story of a girl stranded in an airport on New Year’s Eve, which also happens to be the anniversary of her best friend’s death. She ends up befriending a boy because of a strange coincidence, and she finally starts to move on. I loved reading about Ryn and her new friends’ adventures together and their way of ringing in the new year. There is a good amount of comic relief and a couple of plot twists in the story, which add some more excitement. I’m not normally a fan of super depressing books, so I was glad to see that this one isn’t actually that bad.

I adored the cast of characters in The Chaos of Standing Still, or rather, the side characters. I’m still not entirely sure what I think of the main character. I found Xander to be so sweet, and I loved how patient and encouraging he is with Ryn. He has a great sense of humour and problems of his own, making him a pretty complex character. I also really enjoyed the quirky characters Ryn and Xander meet at the airport, such as Siri (the barista) and Troy (the fourteen year old genius). They make the book more fun, and I loved reading about their humorous interactions.

Since the book takes place during one day, there are a lot of flashbacks that tell the story of Ryn and Lottie’s past. I appreciate a good flashback every once in a while, but in this case, the flashbacks seem to occur right when the story is picking up. Just as I’m getting invested in the story, there is an interruption, and it really takes away from the action. I would have preferred it if the flashbacks occurred at the end of the chapter, instead of right in the middle of an interesting scene. That and the pretty unrealistic events at the airport lowered my rating of what could have been an amazing novel.

The Chaos of Standing Still is a complex novel about coping with the death of a loved one. There is plenty of comic relief and some pretty adorable moments, so the book isn’t pure sorrow. I loved the unique side characters throughout the story, but the flashbacks became annoying for me. I didn’t hate this book, but I definitely believe that it could have been better.

I received an e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Series Review: Heist Society by Ally Carter

Title: Heist Society
Author: Ally Carter
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Publication Date: February 7, 2010-November 15, 2016
Stars: 4/5

Summary (of book one): When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her on a trip to the Louvre…to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria…to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own—scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. Unfortunately, leaving “the life” for a normal life proves harder than she’d expected.

Soon, Kat’s friend and former co-conspirator, Hale, appears out of nowhere to bring Kat back into the world she tried so hard to escape. But he has a good reason: a powerful mobster has been robbed of his priceless art collection and wants to retrieve it. Only a master thief could have pulled this job, and Kat’s father isn’t just on the suspect list, he is the list. Caught between Interpol and a far more deadly enemy, Kat’s dad needs her help.

For Kat, there is only one solution: track down the paintings and steal them back. So what if it’s a spectacularly impossible job? She’s got two weeks, a teenage crew, and hopefully just enough talent to pull off the biggest heist in her family’s history–and, with any luck, steal her life back along the way.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

Heist Society is the second series of Ally Carter’s that I’ve picked up (the first being the Embassy Row books), and I can safely say that she is right up there with my favourite authors. Heist Society is an original series about a group that plans and executes heists. The main characters are all so likeable, even if they are a bit clichéd. This series perfectly balances lightness and action, and it is perfect for those looking for some quick reads.

I love the concept of this series. It follows a group of teenagers who execute heists to re-steal valuables that have been stolen. The heists are so well planned, and every single one is logical. What is interesting about these books is the fact that they are actually based on real events, like the Nazis stealing paintings. The books are suspenseful and action-packed, but are also lots of fun. I have always been a fan of heist stories, so the Heist Society series is just what I’ve been looking for.

Kat is an amazing main character. She is brave and clever, and she is good at working on a deadline. What I especially appreciated about her character is the fact that she understands that she can’t do her job on her own, so she forms an epic squad. I enjoyed how every character has a significant role in the heists, and they all come up with the schemes together. The characters did seem a bit stereotypical, and hearing about Gabrielle’s long legs every chapter does get a bit annoying, but it didn’t ruin the book for me.

Of all the books, my favourite was definitely the first one, Heist Society. I feel like it has the best plot, and it’s the most original. After that, all the other books felt repetitive, and a little bit unnecessary, if I’m honest, but they’re still interesting to read. I do also wish that the holiday novella was a bit more festive, but I guess it’s hard to be super festive in a book about thieves. There are still some loose ends left after the third book, so I am hoping that we get a fourth instalment soon!

The Heist Society is a fast-paced series about a group of teens who plan heists for good. I loved the cast of characters and the main character’s intelligence. My favourite of the books was the first one, but I still enjoyed the whole series. If you are looking for a quick and light series that will also keep you on the edge of your seat, I would definitely recommend this series.

ARC Review: Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe by Melissa de la Cruz

 

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Title: Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe
Author: Melissa de la Cruz
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Publication Date: October 17, 2017
Stars: 3/5

Summary (from Goodreads): Darcy Fitzwilliam is 29, beautiful, successful, and brilliant. She dates hedge funders and basketball stars and is never without her three cellphones—one for work, one for play, and one to throw at her assistant (just kidding). Darcy’s never fallen in love, never has time for anyone else’s drama, and never goes home for Christmas if she can help it. But when her mother falls ill, she comes home to Pemberley, Ohio, to spend the season with her dad and little brother.

Her parents throw their annual Christmas bash, where she meets one Luke Bennet, the smart, sardonic slacker son of their neighbor. Luke is 32 and has never left home. He’s a carpenter and makes beautiful furniture, and is content with his simple life. He comes from a family of five brothers, each one less ambitious than the other. When Darcy and Luke fall into bed after too many eggnogs, Darcy thinks it’s just another one night stand. But why can’t she stop thinking of Luke? What is it about him? And can she fall in love, or will her pride and his prejudice against big-city girls stand in their way?

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

If you are one to pick up a few fluffy holiday reads, then Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe will definitely put you in the holiday spirit. The story is a unique retelling of the classic, with its gender swap. However, there isn’t much substance to the plot.

I am a huge fan of holiday books, so when I first heard about this book, I was really excited. It is quite a short story, which is something that actually draws me into a book like this because it is one that you can pick up and read quite quickly during the busy Christmas season. The holiday party at the beginning of the novel really sets the scene for a fun seasonal read.

There have been quite a few retellings of Pride and Prejudice over the years, but this is the first one that has a female Darcy that I have heard of. I really enjoyed this concept and the character of Darcy is definitely an interesting one. Darcy starts off as a bit of an unlikable character, but as the story goes on and we learn more of her backstory, her personality softens quite a bit.

I try not to expect too much from a fun seasonal read, but I would have enjoyed Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe more if the plot was a little bit more realistic. Some of the events just seemed to be a bit far-fetched and a little bit confusing. That being said, the story moved along quickly and I really liked the ending, so there are some redeeming aspects to this one.

While Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe wasn’t as epic as I had hoped for, it is still a cute holiday themed read. The gender swap is one that gives this retelling a different flair. If you are looking for a fast-paced novel to jump into over the Christmas season, this may be a book that fits the bill.

I received an ARC from Raincoast Books in exchange for an honest review.