Technically, Christmas Cakes and Mistletoe Nights is a sequel to Cake Shop in the Garden but it stands quite well on its own. I actually only realised that it’s a sequel due to the summarised info dump during the first couple of chapters — think throwback highlight reel at the start of new seasons of TV shows. Once that’s done and dusted, it’s back to regular writing and storytelling.
As a whole I liked the concept of a collection of short holiday stories. Where My True Love Gave to Me shines is the multiplicity of views. There are stories for Christmas, Hanukkah and Winter Solstice. There are stories about people who subvert heteronormativity. There are stories about people from multicultural and non-White backgrounds.
I finally decided to join the party and read Anna and the French Kiss. It’s one of those books I read because I wanted to know what the book was about. It keeps popping up everywhere online—in the blogosphere, on Instagram, as well as Twitter—and all the online bookstores seem to have it under their recommendations right now. At first I did mostly enjoy the book. For the most part, I liked Stephanie Perkins’ writing style, which was well-suited towards a sweet romance. Sadly, towards the last third, prominent cracks started appearing for me.
With a page count of 416, I expected way more out of This is What Happy Looks Like. I’m convinced that even with 300 pages, the story would’ve had adequate room to breathe. In fact, I expect a whole lot more depth out of a thicker book, especially when it’s Contemporary. There’s little world building…