Thursday, 15 December 2011

Review for The Night Before Christmas by Scarlett Bailey

The Night Before Christmas by Scarlett Bailey
Publisher: Ebury Press
Release Date: 27th October 2011
Genre: Chick-lit, Adult Fiction, Christmas, Winter
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Source: Received from the publisher for review

Amazon Summary:
"All Lydia's ever wanted is a perfect Christmas...

So when her oldest friends invite her to spend the holidays with them, it seems like a dream come true. She's been promised log fires, roasted chestnuts, her own weight in mince pies - all in a setting that looks like something out of a Christmas card.

But her winter wonderland is ruined when she finds herself snowed in with her current boyfriend, her old flame and a hunky stranger. Well, three (wise) men is traditional at this time of year..."

The Night Before Christmas is a book, that for me, had both its highs and lows overall making it an average read. This is less of a Christmas story and more of a chick-lit novel with a Christmas backdrop. What I mean by that is that despite this book being set during those few days leading up to Christmas it just didn’t really feel festive to me and didn’t have an underlining Christmas moral which I think is key if you’re going to write a book about Christmas. Instead the book definitely reads like your usual chick-lit story focusing more on relationships and everyday situations than Christmas. Basically I guess what I’m trying to say is that Bailey could of taken advantage of the Christmas theme more than she chose to.

First off I’ll get my dislikes out of the way. Lydia and her friends aren’t exactly the most likeable characters I’ve come across. Lydia spends much of the book running from her current boyfriend, to her ex-boyfriend (not to mention who is also her best friends new man) to a hunky stranger. Her careless regard towards other people’s feelings and who she might be hurting in the process really grated on my nerves and to be honest I found her a bit selfish. Then there’s Joanna- who is currently girlfriend to Lydia’s ex- who’s really superficial and makes her own fair share of hurtful mistakes. Then there’s Alex possibly the world’s most unpleasant heavily pregnant woman ever. And Katy who to be frank is a bit of a doormat but probably the most genuine of her friends. There wasn’t really a female character that I could really get behind and connect with. If anything I felt rather sorry for their poor chaps for being snowed in with them!

Another thing that irked me was the poor editing that went into this book. The Night Before Christmas is littered with spelling mistakes and missed out words that left sentences that made little to no sense. I know that mistakes happen and being a book blogger who reads uncorrected proof copies this isn’t something that usually fazes me but for a finished copy this was just plain embarrassing, worse even, than any proof I’ve ever read. Although this is of course no reflection on Scarlett Bailey or the story itself at the end of the day if the presentations half arsed it makes the book seem sloppy and just cringey in general to read.

Those problems aside I did like this book. Scarlett Bailey writes a hilarious account of a perfect Christmas gone wrong, something I think that most people can relate to! Her writing style is fresh, modern and funny with some truly laugh out loud moments.

I also really liked the men in this story particularly the lovely Will. Bailey writes romance and complex relationships with honesty and humour and I loved reading about Lydia’s past and steamy encounters with the men she’s snowed in with. Trying to figure out which man she was going to end up with being the real highlight of the book.

All in all despite some issues I had with The Night Before Christmas I still enjoyed it for the most part and think that it would make a nice, fun, girly read for Christmas but maybe not so much if you’re looking for a book with a little more substance and festive cheer.

1 comment :

  1. So glad I didn't pick this one up now. When I want a festive read I expect a festive read and bad editing winds me up!


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