I usually don’t read romantic holiday stories. They tend to get really corny and clichéd, and they are very predictable. In other words, they feel like Hallmark movies. If I were to read one, I would be making fun of it right off the bat. Recently, however, I discovered a romantic holiday book that I unironically enjoyed! That book was One Day in December by Josie Silver.
One Day in December revolves around Laurie, who normally does not believe in love at first sight, but instinctively finds the man of her dreams one night. Unfortunately, her bus pulls away before anything else can happen. Laurie spends a year looking for the mysterious bus boy until they are reunited at her Christmas party, when her best friend Sarah introduces her to her boyfriend Jack. Quickly, Laurie realizes that Jack is the guy from the bus. What follows is ten years of friendship, heartbreak, missed opportunities (like me not posting in December), and destinies reconsidered among Laurie, Sarah, and Jack.
What makes this novel stand out among the others in its genre is that it has meat and self-awareness. When I say meat, I mean the story has depth. The book is told through Laurie’s and Jack’s eyes. This allows the novel to see both sides of the coin, especially the shock of seeing each other for the first time since the bus episode. Readers are also allowed to see how each reacts to the other’s relationships as well as how they see each other over ten years. In addition, the book is aware of how ridiculous the situation is. Even though it is a little contrived at the very beginning of the novel, Laurie discusses how silly it is to fall in love with your best friend’s significant other. At the very end, Jack and Laurie admit that if they acted upon their impulses in the beginning, their story would have been really dull.
Additionally, the book is highly addictive. I read about 30-40 pages almost every night because I wanted to see how Laurie and Jack deal with the various situations at hand. During that time, I never felt bored.
On the other hand, a good chunk of reviewers complained about how predictable the ending was. Spoilers: Laurie and Jack finally end up together! I honestly did not have a problem with it because it was satisfying. If they did not, I would have thrown the book against the wall and never read it again.
Overall, One Day in December is a wonderful romantic holiday book that will keep readers on their toes. I would definitely recommend it for those who like more in-depth characters and self-awareness in their light holiday stories. I am sure that anybody who reads it will unironically enjoy the book as much as I did.
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