First thing I need to say is I was expecting a Christmas read. For me, this is not a Christmas read as such, just a winter and lot of snow read.
Title: Winter Wonderland
Author: Belinda Jones
Genre: Chick Lit – Contemporary – Romance
Age Classification: Adult
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Release: November 1, 2012
I do not understand romance being the focal point of books, movies or television shows. Perhaps I was born faulty. I am okay with that. What surprised me was the romance element actually kind of pushed this story forward, that and a weird troublemaker, but I would have prefered something more empowering mixed into the storyline.
Our female lead is Krista, a travel journalist who goes to the snowy town of Quebec to write a piece for a travel website about what the town has to offer. Krista was kind of a downer throughout the entire book. Her backstory made it somewhat understandable, but it was annoying to read.
In Quebec, Krista teams up with Gilles the photographer and Annique the tour guide, both of which Krista is weird around because of an event that occurred in chapter one. She spends the first few chapters conflicted by this awkward situation until she is saved by a mystery wolfman in chapter six. Krista then goes into stalker mode to find out his name is Jacques and he has a business involving huskys and dog-sled rides.
Jacques was also an annoying character to read, though this was because his mood flicked between nice to grumpy in 0.2 seconds. Again, backstory explains why, but I dislike characters (and real-world people) that allow a few crappy life events to impact their lives in negative ways and take it out on others. Life can suck, we get it, but do not let the bad times linger to destroy any chance of good times in the future.Then there is what Jacques mood has done to his brother Sebastian. A Cirque du Soleil performer who has taken a break from his passion to watch over his brother because he is a moody mess taking some unnecessary risks.
Obviously, Krista is then
obsessed interested in Jacques, his family and their problems for the rest of the book going as far to find the mother of Jacques dead best friend. Eh, best intentions and all but a little weird. Throw in about five different drama-causing events that all seem to be tied to Krista’s meddling then finish it off with a happy conclusion and you have yourself a cute little novel.
One thing that almost ruins the ‘cute little romance novel’ status is a really weird character that popped up from time to time to basically stir the pot and cause a little mayhem. Sure, it gave Krista a few more reasons to talk to Jacques after her ‘thank you for saving me’ bit, but he felt like a weird way to stretch out the story. He did some pranks, focused on Krista a bit, the Krista went all Dr. Phil on him and gave him a way to keep himself amused while doing good rather than making trouble for the people of Quebec.
Winter Wonderland is a cute little novel and, while I do have my issues with the story, I liked reading it. The writing was good and the plot decent enough, but it is not a book I will read again anytime soon. It was a wintery romance I can envision being read by a fireplace with a hot cuppa and snow lightly falling outside.
Star Rating: ☆☆☆
Have you read Winter Wonderland?
What did you think?
Have you ever read a book, liked it buthad
Until next time bibliophiles!