Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Book Review: My True Love Gave to Me by Various Authors (no spoilers)

Book: My True Love Gave to Me
Author: Various
Publication: October 14th, 2014
Source: Local Library
Read: Dec 22nd, 2014- Jan 2nd, 2015
My Thoughts:

Midnights by Rainbow Rowell

This was not my favorite story of the book. I found it hard to understand. It is was a midnight love story told over serveral year. It was a lot of random conversations and I don't think the story was able to be fleshed out as much as it could have been. Eventually everything came together.

The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link

I liked this story, but the writing style did sometimes get in the way of the story. I was sometimes confused by this one also. The story involved ghosts of Christmas past, which was a interesting element. I think this story could have been better with a more clear writing style.

Angels in the Snow by Matt De La Pena

This story was about two college students who were snowed in during Christmas break. Shy is housesitting for the landlord of the apartment building, Mike. Haley's pipes break down and she asks Shy if he will fix them. He doesn't know the first thing about plumbing so Haley has to come down to Mike's apartment to shower and that is where their romance begins. I think this was my second favorite story of the book. I loved the writing style. It was so conversational and I really found a connection with the characters since they were both college students. I would have loved to see their romance blossom more.

Polaris is Where You'll Find Me by Jenny Han

I loved this story about Nattie who was adopted by Santa and living in the North Pole. It was fun watching Nattie fall in love with a boy she barely met and an elf she had known for a while. There were a few loose ends when the story finished. I thought this story was magical. I had a vivid picture of the north pole in my mind and fell in love with the characters.

It's A Yuletide Miracle Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins

In classic Stephanie Perkins fashion she was able to craft a believable love story that happened in only a few hours. Marigold buys a Charlie Brown Christmas tree from a Christmas Tree Farm from a boy named North, but she needs help getting it home. So their love story begins. I found this story very sweet and I would have loved for it to keep going.

Your temporary Santa by David Levithan

This story was very short. I read the entire story before I got out of bed one morning. I thought it was sweet that a brother would go to great lengths to see his little sister Riley believe in Santa. I have often talk how Santa brings the magic of Christmas out for me. I love how the LGBTQ theme was worked into the novel. There wasn't too much substance to the story, but I did enjoy it. 

Krampuslauf by Holly Black

This story was strange. It was by far not my favorite of the book, but I still liked it. This was a New Year's story about Penny throwing a fancy New Year's party. I enjoyed the contemporary aspects, but some of the magical realism elements just didn't click with me. I still liked this story just didn't love it. 

What the Hell Have You Done Sophie Roth?  by Gayle Forman

Gayle Forman's story was really disappointing for me. I spent a good portion of the story confused and by the time I understood everything that was happening I did not have enough time to connect to the characters. What I did relate to was that Sophie was a college freshman and she was feel homesick during her first semester of college. That was me last year so I understand. Sophie was lucky enough to meet Russell who helped her celebrate Hanukkah. 

Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire

Vaughn Hatcher gets himself into a lot of trouble, but when he burns down the barn that houses the churches nativity scene. Vaughn has to do community service to rebuild the nativity scene in time for Christmas. There he is able to connect with his crush Gracie Robinson. It isn't long before sparks begin to fly. This story of a rebel and a pastor's daughter falling in love is familiar, but I really enjoyed this take of the story. 

Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White

Maria is a resentful teenager forced to work at her families Christmas themed diner for tips only. Maria also watches her friend Candy suffer from an abusive relationship. Then there is Ben, their new cook. Ben believes he can change people and help people through food. Maria and Ben form a special bond. This is my favorite story of the novel. I loved the feeling of hope I had at the end of this novel. This story was by far the longest and totally my favorite. There was a lot of time for development and happy endings. 

Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter

This story was about a girl named Liddy who pretends to be an icelandic foreign exchange student who flies across the world to meet her boyfriend Ethan. I found this story interesting. I thought what the family did at the end was really sweet. I enjoyed this story. 

The Girl Who Work the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

This story did not have a story Christmas theme to it besides the advent calendar. I did enjoy the magical elements of this story as the girl talked about her dreams as it gets closer to Christmas. I think the idea of the Dreamer was cool. I think Laini Taylor created a good story, but I also wish it had more Christmas elements to the story. 

Overall I would recommend reading this anthology. I enjoyed the Christmas reads and all the new authors I got to experience. Kiersten White and Matt De La Pena are two authors I need to read more of.


  1. I don't read a lot of anthologies, b/c short stories/novellas aren't my favorite. I read them when it's a top author (b/c must read ALL THE THINGS), but in cases like this . . . *shrugs* not really my thing. I am actually interested in a couple of these though, but I'll probably wait until the anthology loses exclusive rights, and the authors put them out individually ;) BUT. I'm glad you really like it and found a couple new authors to check out!

    1. They aren't really my favorite either, but I did enjoy this one and I enjoy finding new authors. I think it is a great idea to wait for the authors to release them on their own.

  2. I love Kiersten White's books! She has a quirky sense of humor. I read the first two stories in this one and then had to return the book. I definitely want to check it back out again just to read White's story. I met Matt de la Pena at our college youth literature conference and he was as nice as could be. I didn't realize he had a story in this one, so I will have to check it out as well. Nice review!

    1. The first two are not that great and after that it gets better, so you should give it another try.


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