I know it's a little late for this, but I DID finish the book on Christmas, which was my goal all along.
Title: Let It Snow
Authors: Maureen Johnson, John Green and Lauren Myracle
Publisher: Speak, 2008
Where I got it: The library!
Let It Snow is made up of three novellas written by three different authors, all big names in the YA book world. And let me tell you, it's for a reason. Each holiday romance takes place mostly in Gracetown on Christmas Eve during one of the biggest snowstorms of the decade. Though all are focused on different characters, in the end they all come together, and along the way characters and events are intertwined in a way that always made me excited to recognize a name or realize how everything was fitting together.
The first was Maureen Johnson's "Jubilee Express," which tells the sweet story of a girl who, despite all signs pointing the other way, thinks she's in a perfect relationship with a perfect guy. But when her parents land in jail and she ends up stranded in a small town, will she be able to see she deserves better? Despite how well-written this is, I didn't find too much that made it stand out for me. It was funny and touching, but it was pretty predictable with no real twists. (Except for the beginning.)
The next story, John Green's "The Cheertastic Christmas Miracle," definitely reminded me that I totally need to read more John Green, and own more of his stuff. He creates the best, quirkiest, most likable characters I've encountered in a while. Here, he picks up the story of a secondary character in Johnson's story and continues to write a cute little romance between old friends (which is one of my favorite kinds) written in a completely believable teen male voice. The situations he creates for his characters are so wacky and unexpected that he completely won me over. I give his story 5 stars, for sure, and this was by far my favorite of the three.
The last story of the three is Lauren Myracle's "The Patron Saint of Pigs," which brings all three stories together. The mysterious Jeb, briefly mentioned in the other two stories, finally gets his own fleshed out. Told from the perspective of his slightly self-absorbed sort-of-ex-girlfriend Addie, we see how one person's obliviousness and selfishness can completely backfire for everyone involved, and how it can be fixed with some effort, and the arrival of a teeny tiny piggy. (You will want a teacup piggy after reading this, just fair warning.) All of the characters in Myracle's contribution have multiple sides and are people I can see existing in real life; they're all flawed and try to fix things that go wrong because of their personalities. Plus, this story tied them all together in the end, much like the Christmas pageant in Love Actually brought all those characters and their stories together in that lovely Christmas movie (which you should watch if you haven't yet).
All in all, John Green carried this one for me. I did enjoy the other two stories, but they completely pale in comparison to Green's story and writing. It was a nice Christmasy read, and I'm glad I found the time to finish it before December 25 ended.