Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Book Review: My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Strories edited by Stephanie Perkins

Title: My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Strories
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publishing Date: October 14th 2014
Length: 320 pages
Keywords: YA, holiday, short stories, contemporary, romance, friendship
Source: Netgalley

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.

Summary by Goodreads

Midnights by Rainbow Rowell
The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link
Angels in the Snow by Matt de La Pena
Polaris is Where You'll Find Me by Jenny Han
It's A Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins
Your Temporary Santa by David Levithan
Krampuslauf by Holly Black
What the Hell Have You Done, Sophie Roth? by Gayle Forman
Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire
Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White
Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter
The Girl Who Woke the Dreamer by Laini Taylor 

Above is a listing of the collected stories in MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME. I'll tell you a bit more about the featured short stories I really enjoyed. I'm sure there's a favourite story for everyone!

MIDNIGHTS by Rainbow Rowell was a super cute romance and a great way to kick off the holiday short story marathon. Rainbow's story tells how Mags and Noel, two friends, fall in love over the course of various New Year's Eve days over the years. MIDNIGHTS was a brilliant short story!

ANGELS IN THE SNOW is the story about Shy who's apartment sitting over the holidays. He and his neighbour Haley slowly get to know each other and are lucky to enjoy each other's company when they would be alone over Christmas.

In Stephanie Perkins' IT'S A YULETIDE MIRACLE, CHARLIE BROWN Marigold goes Christmas tree hunting. That's where she meets the empathetic and absolutely charming North who not only helps her deliver her Christmas tree but to find a lovely happy ending to her unexpected Christmas romance.

WHAT THE HELL HAVE YOU DONE, SOPHIE ROTH? is a Hannukah story that demands a minor miracle for Russell and Sophie, the possibly only two people staying on campus over the holidays. 
BEER BUCKETS AND BABY JESUS by Myra McEntire focuses on a pageant's twentieth anniversary that is endangered to turn into an epic Christmas disaster, until Vaughn and Grace team up in order to save the performance and earn their sweet holiday romance.

WELCOME TO CHRISTMAS, CA by Kiersten White is  a magical, culinary Christmas tale. It is set in a diner in the town of Christmas, California, where Maria works. When the new cook Ben is hired the town-people start to rediscover the diner as a place to be with friends, joking, stuffed and happy. It's the story of how Maria and Ben slowly fall in love, about family, new friends and helping others. 

In STAR OF BETHLEHEM star Liddy swaps roles with an Icelandic girl named Hulda. Instead of taking her flight to New York she travels to a small town named Bethlehem in the middle of snowy nothingness. There she meets Ethan, Hulda's supposed boyfriend and they start an undercover mission of love.

MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME also had some stories that I wasn't really impressed by and couldn't take pleasure in as much as the others named above. They were THE LADY AND THE FOX by Kelly Link, POLARIS IS WHERE YOU'LL FIND ME by Jenny Han, YOUR TEMPORARY SANTA by David Levithan, KRAMPUSLAUF by Holly Black, THE GIRL WHO WOKE THE DREAMER by Laini Taylor. I was surprised to find myself loving stories by authors I hadn't encountered before and finding stories by favourite authors taking some getting used to.

I got really excited when I first heard about MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME. How couldn't I? Some of my favourite authors teamed up to put together a collection of holiday stories. While I might not be into short stories in the first place, they are probably my favourite kind of holiday story now. There need to be more YA holiday novels in general! 

The short stories slightly vary in length and holiday theme. Some are focused on Christmas or Hannukah, others are set around New Year's Eve. Some of the short stories are further divided by subchapters. There are stories that are purely written as a contemporary romance, others leave room for miracles, magic and paranormal beings. 

Stephanie Perkins gathered stories that represent a great diversity. We've got female and male narrators. It doesn't matter if you are Mexican, Chinese or Spanish, Jewish or Christian, gay or straight. There's a cute holiday romance coming your way!

4/5 **** MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME: TWELVE HOLIDAY STORIES - A heart-warming and diverse collection of beautiful holiday short stories.

Stephanie Perkins did a fabulous job with this book. Kissing, warm embraces, smiles, kind gestures, heart-felt words. This novel supplies you with stories that should make your holiday spirit sky-rocket. This book is everything you could wish for as a present! I'm suggesting Stephanie puts together a holiday story collection every year! 

"As Christmas stories go, this one isn't as sad as it could be. I'm not Tiny Tim. There were no Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present or Future. All told, it is a tale completely free of angels and elves, wise men and shepherds. Even Santa didn't make an appearance. Nope. As it turns out, I was visited by Hulda." Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter

MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME by Stephanie Perkins you might enjoy LET IT SNOW by John Green, Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle. 

An ill-timed storm on Christmas Eve buries the residents of Gracetown under multiple feet of snow and causes quite a bit of chaos. One brave soul ventures out into the storm from her stranded train and sets off a chain of events that will change quite a few lives. Over the next three days one girl takes a risky shortcut with an adorable stranger, three friends set out to win a race to the Waffle House (and the hash brown spoils), and the fate of a teacup pig falls into the hands of a lovesick barista.

A trio of today's bestselling authors - John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle - bring all the magic of the holidays to life in three hilarious and charming interconnected tales of love, romance, and kisses that will steal your breath away.
(Summary by Goodreads)

* Check out the UK cover for MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME.

* Click here to read an excerpt.

* For more information about Stephanie Perkins and her books visit

* Thanks to Netgalley and St. Martin's Press for the chance to review MY TRUE LOVE GAVE TO ME!

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