Let It Snow

Title: Let It Snow - Three Holiday Romances
Authors: Maureen Johnson, John Green, Lauren Myracle
Pub Date: 2008
Pages: 352
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Seasonal
What I picked it up: Um, hello?! John Green. Heart goes pitter-patter,fangirl squeal, "he's sooo dreamy" *le sigh*

Let It Snow features three short stories all set in the same town during Christmas Eve/Christmas Day.

The Jubilee Express by Maureen Johnson - Jubilee (Julie) is looking forward to a wonderful and romantic Christmas Eve with her perfect boyfriend Noah. It is after all, their one year anniversary. Life couldn't be more lovely until Julie's next door neighbor rushes over and plans are unexpectedly changed. Julie's parents, while in the pursuit of purchasing the newest Flobie (the Christmas craze), were arrested when a riot broke out. Instead of spending a delectable holiday with Noah, Julie is packed up and sent on a train to spend Christmas with her grandparents. And then, if that doesn't make matters worse, the train smacks into tons of snow. Coming to a sudden stop, Julie is stuck in the train with twelve cheerleaders and a boy named Jeb. What to do, what to do? Julie decides to walk to the Waffle House across the way wherein she meets another boy Stuart and agrees to go home with him to avoid cheerleader-ness giggles. Mourning her unfortunate luck, Julie tries to make the best of it.

My thoughts:

This is not going to be a favorable review because I ultimately found the overall story unbelievable. Christmas magic or not, there were a couple of major fallacies that I could not overlook. (1) it is snowing horribly outside, you are a high school girl with no idea where you are at, and you are going to hop off of the train without telling anyone and just trudge through to the Waffle House, (2) once in the Waffle House, you're going to agree to go home with a complete stranger, albeit a stranger your own age so that makes it safer, to spend the night in a warm home, and finally (3) while all of this is going on you're not calling your grandparents - elderly people !!! - who are awaiting your arrival to tell them "Oops. Train stalled; I'll be late. But I'm safe". Do you see why I had some problems here? I couldn't really enjoy the story because I kept rolling my eyes thinking now way would that happen! And the sad part is? I kinda liked Julie as a character. I mean, there were some funny moments.
I haven't read anything else by Maureen Johnson and don't know if I will.

A Cheertastic Miracle by John Green - Meet JP, The Duke, and Tobin. Three best friends hanging out watching James Bond movies on Christmas Eve. Then, Tobin receives an urgent phone call from Keun who is working a the town's Waffle House: [paraphrased] "Dude, you're never going to believe this! Cheerleaders just showed up here and they're stranded. You heard me. For the night. Their train stalled. You have to come up here now. Don't be an asshat." What starts out as a leisurely and quiet night turns into mayhem, near death moments, and freezing cold weather. The Duke (our only female protagonist) agrees to go along with the pursuit of cheerleaders because of her undeniable adoration for the Waffle House hash-browns. As the night wears on, the mission isn't about obtaining the cheertrophy, but staying alive from snow, bullies, and each other.

My thoughts
This short story does not make me love John Green any less (alternatively, it doesn't make me love him any more either). I mean it was definitely John Green. I love his narration, especially because the main character is a guy, and quite honestly there just aren't enough leading male protagonists in YA lit. Especially romance-love-driven novels. Also, if you haven't noticed Green does a phenomenal job incorporating nicknames for his characters "The Duke" rather than Angie (I think? I can't remember her real name right now). Plus it's just pure zany. The romance (and there is romance) isn't necessarily the impetus to the story line. In this case it centers around friendship and adventure. Still, it wasn't enough for me. I cannot fangirl rave. I fear it's just because I'm not a short story kinda girl. I can think of only a handful of short stories that truly left me in awe.

The Patron Saint of Pigs by Lauren Myracle - Addie is miserable. It's Christmas Eve and she's heartbroken. A week earlier she and her boyfriend, Jeb (ring a bell?) broke up because she stupidly made out with another boy at a party. In a desperate move, Addie sent Jeb an e-mail begging him to meet her at Starbucks to talk about their relationship. Jeb never showed. To make matters worse, her two closest friends just told her that they thought she was self-centered. Her? Self-centered? Whatever. In fact, she'll even prove to them how unselfish she is: she'll pick up Tegan's pet pig.

My thoughts
This was perhaps my least favorite story. I mean, I didn't really believe The Jubilee Express, but at least I smirked a couple of times. The Patron Saint of Pigs best part was the description of the cute little teacup pig. In fact, I had to go on a youtube fiesta and seek out cutesy snorting piglets.
I looked up Lauren Myracle (don't you love the spelling of that name?) and realized that she also wrote Kissing Kate, which I also did not find favorable. Maybe this author just isn't my kind of YA.

Overall Thoughts
  • I really liked that characters were introduced in the stories and then carried over into the next. Or an older character that we had already met popped up again. Very cool.

  • I don't get the all warm-fuzzy-holiday-miracle-love-conquers-all. Perhaps that's why this selection didn't WoW me like most. (Does this make me a Scrooge?)

  • John Green was the reason why I chose this book, and John Green is the only author that I will continue to seek out again having read this book.

  • Yay for teacup piglets!

  • I am discouraged to read more short fiction.

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