Monday, December 9, 2019

Review: Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, & Lauren Myracle

Title: Let It Snow
Authors: John Green, Maureen Johnson, & Lauren Myracle
Format: Paperback, 352 pages
Pub. Date: October 2nd 2008
Source: Goodwill

Book Description:

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- brings 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.



This book has been on my to-read list for such a long time. When it snowed shortly after Halloween in my neck of the woods, I figured it was the perfect time to get in the jingle bell spirit. I wish I hadn't.

This book is divided into three different short stories, so I'll give three tiny reviews of each one.

Starting this anthology off is Maureen Johnson's story titled "The Jubilee Express". This was easily my favorite of the three. It involves a girl named Jubilee who has to head to Florida for the holidays when her parents are arrested, only to find that her train is snowed in too.

It's definitely not a realistic story, but it's Christmas so I can ignore that. The romance plot is super cute and warm and fuzzy inside. I adored that the main character stands up for herself when she realizes she is being treated badly. We could all use that type of confidence, even if it takes awhile.

I think her name is super cute, and the way it relates to both the plot of the story and the spirit of Christmas is well done.

Some things that were a little irritating was the whole "not like other girls" thing, and the fact that she's anti-cheerleader for no real reason and even has the gall to make fun of them for all being named things like Madison..... When her name is Jubilee, which she also hates for being unique? It's weird.
Maureen Johnson's story

The middle story is that of John Green, entitled "A Cheertastic Christmas Miracle". I think I was most disappointed by this story. It wasn't the worst one, but because I have read (and loved) other John Green books and had higher expectations.

The main character is awful. He keeps describing his female friend as "not a girl" and not like other girls, is one of the boys. When he finds out she's seeing another boy, he makes fun of them. Even when she asks him to stop because enough is enough, he doesn't stop. He has the type of vocabulary of "that's gay". He and his best friend are endangering all their lives for the chance to bang a cheerleader because they're so easy, coupled with slut jokes. He crashes his car and tells his parents he was carjacked because his parents have insurance, so it's all fine. He also realizes he has feelings out of seemingly nowhere. Just I see the light we are meant to be!

She's not innocent here though. She is anti-cheerleader (seriously, am I the only person on the planet whose school cheerleaders were just normal albeit pretty people?) yet she agrees to go with them (because she wants hashbrowns) and complains the whole time about going and that they're just after cheerleaders. Even though she knew that from the beginning. She clearly has feelings for the MC (lord knows why) but instead of using words, decides to be judgy and passive aggressive the whole time. She's also the type of girl who calls her friends "retarded misogynists."

Yikes. They deserve each other, but not for the way Green intended.

And last, there is Lauren Myracle's "The Patron Saint of Pigs". I didn't care for this one, but it least it (sort of?) had some personality growth.

The main character is awful. She's so self absorbed. Five people in 100 pages tell her this, and tell her she's terrible and selfish. She then supposedly has her "Christmas angel epiphany" of how she needs to change and stop being so selfish. And she sort of does? The whole story she is bossing around her boss like she's not a teenager at a Starbucks. She tells her boss (not asks) what she's doing and when she's leaving. Ha, no. And even after this "epiphany" when she comes back, she still treats her boss poorly, even though she has brought a pig (yes, literal pig!) into a CAFE. I get it, you're a teenager and all authority is bad but it's a pig in a coffee shop that is upsetting.

Speaking of Starbucks, it's mentioned so much that it sort of just started to sound like this story was sponsored. There's also a lot of pop culture references here that make the story seem really outdated. Like American Idol being all the rage, the fact that her iPod has the click wheel thing, and I would have been her age roughly in 2008 when this was first published and even I had to google what the hell an iPenguin is.

I couldn't help to be disappointed when her friends forgave her and she got the boy, to be honest.

But, at the end of this story there's a nice little wrap up that features all of the couples from the other stories too. It's a little rushed and muddled, but that's the issue with short story collections. You don't get to know anyone well enough in so few pages, and the pacing is quick.

I didn't care much for this book, and I was glad it was over. It does make me want to read more by Maureen Johnson, but that's about it.


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