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Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle - Review

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Where did I get it? I don't exactly remember, I know I've had it a few years and I know I thought last January "Gosh, I really must read that at Christmas this year", and I remembered this when I was looking at the bookshelves a couple of weeks ago, so pulled it out to read close to Christmas. I feel like someone may have sent me it in a swap, so if that was you thank you very much!

I have, by the way, still got loads of reviews to write for what I read in November and the beginning of December, but I decided to put this review here so that it's timely! 

What's it about? Each author has written a different story in the book, set in the same town which is enduring a huge snowstorm on Christmas Eve, and which are loosely connected and feature some of the same characters. When I started reading it, I didn't quite understand how this worked, but it soon became clear, and I thought it was really clever how it was done. I would love to write a book with someone in this fashion!

So the first story, by Maureen Johnson, concerns Jubilee. Her parents get arrested on Christmas Eve and they decide to send Jubilee to her grandparents' in Florida. She gets on a train and then it gets stuck in a snowstorm in a small town called Gracetown. She leaves the train to walk to the local Waffle House which she can see from the tracks, leaving her new friend Jeb in the company of a bunch of cheerleaders. When they all make it to Waffle House, Jubilee decides to leave with someone she met there, and romance ensues... 

I liked this story, I liked Jubilee a lot, for me this was the best story. 

In the second story, written by John Green, the manager of the Waffle House calls up his friends to come and join him and the cheerleaders, so Tobin and JP and the Duke set off in the storm. They're battling against two other groups, and chaotic events don't stop happening. 

You can tell this is John Green's story, it's got very much a feel of his writing. I liked Tobin and the Duke a lot, I thought this was a funny story and perfect in how it ended too. 

The third story, by Lauren Myracle, is the weakest of the three, and I struggled to warm to Addie. She's in the middle of a crisis because she's split up with her boyfriend Jeb (remember him from before?) after cheating on him. Her friends keep telling her she's very self-involved (which I'm not sure I agree with, but I don't think we got to see enough of her character, really), so she makes a promise to do something on Boxing Day for her friend. Can she manage it and get Jeb back at the same time? 

I do have to say there was some problematic language in this book which probably wouldn't pass an editor in 2018, but clearly did in 2008. I found that quite jarring, but I guess it does show the progress we've made in ten years. 

What age range is it for? 14+ 

Are any main characters LGBTQ+? No 

Are any main characters people of colour? Jeb is First Nation 

Are any main characters disabled either mentally or physically? No 

Is there any sex stuff? No 

Are drugs mentioned or used? No 

Is there any talk of death? No 

Are there swear words? No - I think it's Tobin who keeps using other words instead. 

What criticisms do I have? Use of words like "sp*z" and "r*tard" just isn't acceptable - I don't think it was in 2008 so I'm sad to see them. I also didn't like Addie very much 

Would I recommend the book? Yes, despite my criticisms. It's cute, they're all cute romances, and the snowstorm adds both some danger and some magic. 

Why did I choose to read it at this point in life? Because it's CHRISTMAS!

What other books is it like? Other John Green ones, for sure. I really liked Tobin, I would like a whole novel about him. 

How many stars? Four out of five, more like seven out of ten but even so 

Where is the book going now? I'll definitely keep it and might read it again 

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