Edited By: Stephanie Perkins
Provided Synopsis: If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you’re going to fall in love with My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by twelve bestselling young adult writers, edited by international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins. Whether you enjoy celebrating Christmas or Hanukkah, Winter Solstice or New Year’s there’s something here for everyone. So curl up by the fireplace and get cozy. You have twelve reasons this season to stay indoors and fall in love.
Review: For this book of holiday-themed short stories, I decided to do a little something different when it came to my written review. Throughout my experience with My True Love Gave to Me I decided to rate each story and record a few of my thoughts; think of them as my own blurbs for each story to either compel you to read or propel you away. Overall I would consider this to be a short story collection worth reading because there were far more gems present than coal.
Midnights by Rainbow Rowell – 3 out of 5 stars. Cute, but with plenty of predictability. One of those cases where I did not feel too invested because the length of the short story did not give me the opportunity to know the characters enough.
The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link – 2 out of 5 stars. Weirdness occurs as a girl grows over time to love a man who can only appear if it snows on Christmas Day. What was the point? Why the rules? I didn’t believe the attraction.
Angels in the Snow by Matt de la Peña – 5 out of 5 stars. Everything about this story worked for me. Unlike the previous stories this one had an effortless flow to it. I had clear impressions of the characters and I could relate to them. This has made me interested in other work by this author.
Polaris Is Where You’ll Find Me by Jenny Han – 4 out of 5 stars. An intriguing premise of a girl adopted by Santa and living at the North Pole with elves. This left me wanting more because there is definitely a story with numerous possibilities here.
It’s a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins – 5 out of 5 stars. Perfect. A blend of the slightly outlandish premise with the power of emotionally romantic magic.
Your Temporary Santa by David Levithan – 3 out of 5 stars. Well-written short story about a boy who dresses up as Santa to ensure his boyfriend’s little sister keeps believing. However, it lost me with the protagonist’s musings and the anger of the other sister.
Krampuslauf by Holly Black – DNF. I couldn’t finish this because it did not appeal to me; not my style.
What the Hell Have You Done, Sophie Roth? by Gayle Forman – 4.5 out of 5 stars. A girl from NYC reflects back on her difficult first semester of college in a small town in the Midwest. She meets at boy at a caroling event, learning through misunderstandings and the trying of new things that perhaps the mistake was not going to the school, but being blind to all of the potentially good things around her. As someone who experienced a similar situation during my college years I was able to relate. Characters were clearly painted and I would happily read more about them. My only qualm is the speed of the romance; slow down, a connection doesn’t always have to lead to instant kissing.
Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire – 1 out of 5 stars. A teen with a fondness for pranks and chaos must help a church nativity play. This story felt incredibly rushed. The characters and their motivations (especially the romance) felt one-dimensional; did not resonate.
Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White – 3.5 out of 5 stars. A small, freeway-exit of a town becomes a community when a new cook comes to town. There was something warm about this.
Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter – 2 out of 5 stars. A girl switches plane tickets with another passenger. Did not work for me because it was so rushed, and the protagonist had secrets so it was impossible to know her or empathize.
The Girl Who Woke the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – 5 out of 5 stars. PURE MAGIC. I will devour anything this author writes.