My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories - Rainbow Rowell, Holly Black, Laini Taylor, Myra McEntire, Kiersten White, Stephanie Perkins, Gayle Forman, Matt de la Pena, Jenny Han, Ally Carter, Kelly Link, David Levithan So far...

Midnights (Rainbow Rowell) - 3.5 Stars

This was cute, but I didn't feel like I got to know Mags as well as I did Noel and that hindered my enjoyment somewhat as I felt unable to understand her actions (why didn't she just let him know she liked him sooner?)

The Lady and the Fox (Kelly Link) - 4 Stars

I liked this - I don't know if it was based on a specific folk tale but I got a very "Tam Lin" vibe off this whole story. Which is one of my favourite folk tales and never fails to draw me in. The writing was kind of quirky and different and I would now like to read more from this author.

Angels in the Snow (Matt de la Pena) - 4.5 Stars

This was extremely unrealistic but I really liked it. I could really sympathise with the main character (despite sharing very little of his background; for example, the muffin scene nearly had me in bits. I feel like there were a couple of points that were dropped that felt like they should have been significant but weren't (him possibly not returning to college and so on) but those are minor details. Recommended.

Polaris is Where You'll Find Me (Jenny Han) - 2 Stars

I feel bad about not liking this one - it was just incredibly bland. I didn't get a great impression of the main character, and I just didn't care about what was happening. Everyone felt like a caricature. I really didn't like Flynn much.

It's a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown (Stephanie Perkins) - 4.5 Stars

It's likely I'll bump this up to five after I finish the collection. I just love Stephanie Perkins, man. She writes fluffy romance in such a non-sentimental, humorous, elegant way that I just can't help but be suckered in. She has a really good sense of what mindset a particular main character would be in - be it Marigold, Anna, Lola, or Isla - and what sort of romance would work for them and be convincing in the situation. I'll definitely revisit this one in future years.

Your Temporary Santa (David Levithan) - 3 Stars

Again, I wanted to like this so much more than I did. There's something weird about Levithan's writing that I don't get - in this, he often didn't use contractions in the main character's internal narration in a way that didn't sound natural and didn't work for me. I couldn't buy that someone would want their boyfriend to sneak into their house like that - I don't know. I liked the relationship between Connor and the main character, and I would have been interested to explore the reasons for Lana's reaction more (it's fairly easy to guess at the basics, but if the implication was about her dad, then doesn't it make Connor wanting his boyfriend to take on that role kind of creepy?)