REVIEW: My True Love Gave to Me by Stephanie Perkins
My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories edited by Stephanie Perkins
Published October 25th 2016 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published October 14th 2014)
Read on December 26, 2016
Goodreads // Book Depository
Hard to give an overall review for 12 short stories, some I loved, some were less. So here's a breakdown
Midnights by Rainbow Rowell: 4.5 stars
This one was my favourite. It was cute, well written. I liked the characters and how they developed even on so little pages. It got me hooked to the book immediately, but sadly enough, most others couldn't compare.
The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link: 2 stars
This was okay. For some reason the magical realism didn't work for me here, maybe because i had thought it would all be contemporary? So it kind of took me by surprise, and it felt a bit odd.
Angels in the Snow by Matt de la Peña: 2.5 stars
Yay for diversity. It was okay and I liked that the POV was male, but apart from that, it didn't click.
Polaris is Where You'll Find Me by Jenny Han: 1.5 star
I did not like this. It gave me buddy the elf feelings, but less funny. It felt unbelievable and in my head the elves were way too tiny.
It's a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins: 4 stars
Really cute. I liked how much character development there was within the span of a couple hours.
Your Temporary Santa by David Levithan: 2 stars
A little more sad, a bit darker. I still don't get the ending with the mom, but it was okay, i guess. I didn't connect to the characters, but I was glad to see an LGBT story included.
Krampuslauf by Holly Black: 1.5 star
What was up with this? Very strange, I didn't really like it.
What the Hell Have You Done, Sophie Roth? by Gayle Foreman: 3 stars
It made me laugh and I liked the sarcasm. I was impressed with the inclusion of a story about Hanukkah, but i felt like the story wasn't about much more than the stereotypes.
Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire: 3.5 stars
It was nice to have a story with a Church pastor and a play in this holiday collection. I liked the emphasis on forgiveness, the lack of judgement and nobody was trying to force anyone to believe anything. There was more nuance and diversity than I had expected for a short story.
Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White: 4 stars
I loved the fact that this story was about family as well. It doesn't shy away from harder topics, but it's well balanced and i really liked it. The ending was great, the symmetry with the beginning was really nice.
This was the first thing I've read from her and I'm even more curious about White's And I Darken now.
Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter: 3 stars
It had a nice twist, but I didn't feel a connection towards the characters, nor felt like they had one towards each other. It was fine, but not memorable.
The Girl Who Woke the Dreamer by Laini Taylor: 2.5 stars (?)
This was really weird. The writing was good, but it felt out of place in this collection. It was a bit depressing, very strange and had little to do with Christmas, in my opinion. I was impressed with the creation of a fantasy world, but again, as I hadn't expected it, it was confusing.
I do think her style would be amazing in a full size story, and i hope to be picking up Daughter of Smoke and Bone soon.
It was an enjoyable holiday read. I didn't expect a lot from if, but did find some gems. The diversity was great, with PoC, queer characters and different holidays and beliefs. I would recommend it, but know what you're getting into so you aren't as surprised as I was to find out it wasn't all contemporary.