Book Reviews: In a Holidaze, Magic Lessons & Geekerella

In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren

Goodreads blurb: One Christmas wish, two brothers, and a lifetime of hope are on the line for hapless Maelyn Jones in In a Holidaze, the quintessential holiday romantic novel by Christina Lauren, the New York Times bestselling author of The Unhoneymooners. It’s the most wonderful time of the year…but not for Maelyn Jones. She’s living with her parents, hates her going-nowhere job, and has just made a romantic error of epic proportions. But perhaps worst of all, this is the last Christmas Mae will be at her favorite place in the world—the snowy Utah cabin where she and her family have spent every holiday since she was born, along with two other beloved families. Mentally melting down as she drives away from the cabin for the final time, Mae throws out what she thinks is a simple plea to the universe: Please. Show me what will make me happy. The next thing she knows, tires screech and metal collides, everything goes black. But when Mae gasps awake…she’s on an airplane bound for Utah, where she begins the same holiday all over again. With one hilarious disaster after another sending her back to the plane, Mae must figure out how to break free of the strange time loop—and finally get her true love under the mistletoe. Jam-packed with yuletide cheer, an unforgettable cast of characters, and Christina Lauren’s trademark “downright hilarious” (Helen Hoang, author of The Bride Test) hijinks, this swoon-worthy romantic read will make you believe in the power of wishes and the magic of the holidays

my take: 4 out of 5. I am a Christmas mega fan. If you read this blog you know this. So i preordered this book as soon as I heard about it, as I had just read and loved The Unhoneymooners, and it seemed like a perfect blend. This book is like a Christmas hallmark movie that you can curl up to, a blend of a few of my favorite things (yes in my mind Julie Andrews is singing backdrop music). Is it super high literature, no. But is it a totally satisfying Romance read from an author that I have been liking more and more? Of course it is. This is the type of books I’m craving now, feel good and satisfying reads. I actually picked this up in a break from a much heavier read that im doing, and it was a soothing balm. I read this over two days, a very quick read. I engaged with the characters, loved the concept of the chosen family and made me very excited to start of Christmas movie season!

Magic Lessons by Alice Hoffman

Goodreads blurb: In an unforgettable novel that traces a centuries-old curse to its source, beloved author Alice Hoffman unveils the story of Maria Owens, accused of witchcraft in Salem, and matriarch of a line of the amazing Owens women and men featured in Practical Magic and The Rules of Magic.Where does the story of the Owens bloodline begin? With Maria Owens, in the 1600s, when she’s abandoned in a snowy field in rural England as a baby. Under the care of Hannah Owens, Maria learns about the “Unnamed Arts.” Hannah recognizes that Maria has a gift and she teaches the girl all she knows. It is here that she learns her first important lesson: Always love someone who will love you back. When Maria is abandoned by the man who has declared his love for her, she follows him to Salem, Massachusetts. Here she invokes the curse that will haunt her family. And it’s here that she learns the rules of magic and the lesson that she will carry with her for the rest of her life. Love is the only thing that matters. Magic Lessons is a celebration of life and love and a showcase of Alice Hoffman’s masterful storytelling.

My take: 3.5 out of 5. How i got to this book is very funny. I am obsessed with Sutton Foster and I was watching Stars in the House with her and she mentioned that she had done the audiobook for this and was coming out soon. So since i was of the view that i would watch Sutton foster reading the phonebook, i figured I would check it out, as I liked the Practical Magic movie. I thought it was a very interesting book, but it was a bit long. Lots of descriptions that although at first proved interesting at the end I had a bit too many recipes vs content. It is an interesting and quite beautifully narrated book. However, as much as I love witch books, i was quite exasperated by some of the decisions they made. It made it quite infuriating and annoying. So its a really good story, especially if you like practical magic and want to get the prelude to it an why they are where they are, and would definitely recommend in audiobook, but it was not one of the best books I’ve read this year.

Geekerella by Ashley Poston

Goodreads blurb: Cinderella goes to the con in this fandom-fueled twist on the classic fairy tale. Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, and all totally adorbs, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom. Geek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball, and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck (and her dad’s old costume), Elle’s determined to win…unless her stepsisters get there first.

Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons—before he was famous. Now they’re nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but the Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise

My take: 3 out of 5. this is total YA, but i had heard good thing about it and decided to try the audiobook. It was so cute and a wonderful new take on cinderella. I could totally see this being a wonderful Disney Original Channel Movie, or A Netflix teen flick a la Kissing Booth or Never Have I ever. Its sweet, cute and a great Cinderella for the 21st century.

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