Mistletoe and Mr. Right by Lyla Payne is comprised of two novellas that take place over Christmas break. Both of the stories have such picturesque settings, and the amusement of the first one in particular stood out to me. I did find that this book has a lot of drama, but because the characters are so well-developed for such short stories in a way that we can understand their actions, I was mostly willing to overlook this. This would be a great read for those looking for a more casual Christmas story.Title: Mistletoe and Mr. Right
Author: Lyla Payne
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Publication Date: October 6, 2015
In "Mistletoe and Mr. Right," Jessica (not Jessie) takes a flying leap and follows her boyfriend home for the holidays for Christmas break, sure that Ireland will provide the perfect backdrop to the beginning of their happily ever after. But it turns out his family--and his gorgeous ex-girlfriend--don't feel the same way, and the only person making the trip worthwhile is the local farmhand, who has a way of showing up when Jessica needs him most . . . and least.
The holiday hijinks continue in "Sleigh Bells and Second Chances," when Jessica's best friend makes her own way across the pond! Christina Lake does not want to be away at Christmas, but it's her duty to babysit one of London's hottest bands at their last-minute concert on Christmas Eve . . . even though she had a fling with Cary, the band's lead singer, that never officially ended. Now forced to reconnect, Christina is starting to think that maybe London is exactly where she's supposed to be to get the perfect New Year's kiss--at least until she finds out that he's been lying the whole time. Can Cary find a way to prove himself before the clock strikes twelve? Or will the New Year ring in a new romance?
Lyla Payne wraps up two perfect holiday novellas, ties them with a ribbon of romance, and tops them with a light dusting of snow. Perfect to curl up with under the tree. Just add hot cocoa!
Review: Mistletoe and Mr. Right by Lyla Payne
The first story. Mistletoe and Mr. Right, follows Jessica, who travels to Ireland to surprise her boyfriend for the holidays. However, things get complicated when his ex-girlfriend also appears and Jessica gets closer with a farmhand. This is such a fun and quirky story, and I loved reading about Jessica’s mishaps as she tries to fit in with her boyfriend’s family–including accidentally running over their goat. The setting is also a great backdrop for a Christmas story.
❀ Two Short Stories in One
The second story, Sleigh Bells and Second Chances, takes a different turn. We tag along with Christina, a publicity intern for a boy band over the holidays. She has history with the leader of the band, and they start to reconnect, but they are forbidden from dating each other due to the nature of their jobs. I love any story about music and the arts, and the London setting also interested me. I wasn’t a fan of Christina’s constant drama, but I will say that I was impressed with how developed the characters in both of the stories are for a short 150 pages each. I didn’t enjoy this one as much as the first story, but it still has its highlights.
❀ Lots of Drama
One thing to note about both of these stories is that they are heavy on drama. This, in addition to the lack of winter activities, doesn’t make them feel very Christmassy. Instead, these stories almost feel like regular contemporaries that could have taken place at any time. This can be both a strength and a weakness, depending on what you’re looking for. For me, however, I would have liked to see more descriptions of their beautiful settings at Christmas and some festive fun to really get into the holiday spirit.
❀ Lacks a Christmassy Atmosphere
Mistletoe and Mr. Right by Lyla Payne contains two novellas that are set over the holidays. I loved the settings in both, and the first story is particularly entertaining. However, the book has its fair share of drama, and I felt like it lacks a Christmassy atmosphere. Despite this, those looking for a seasonal read that isn’t overwhelmingly festive will enjoy this one.