The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss
It’s a cute yet predictable story-I feel like I will probably say that a few times over the course of my Christmas book reviews this year and for the rest of eternity because I have yet to find a revolutionary one. Anyways, The Twelve Dates of Christmas is cute. Frankly, give me anything set in England and I’ll like it more than I would if it’s set in the U.S.
Kate is an artist. Having moved to her hometown of Blexford to be with her father, she’s been single in a small town for a good bit. She’s a smart and sassy sweetheart with a fierce independence that makes it hard for her to find a partner. Though Kate has all but given up on a happily ever after, her best friend, Laura, has not and convinces her to join a dating agency that will send her on twelve dates with twelve different men spanning the Christmas season. At the age of 34, Kate has very much decided she’s not searching for passion but compatibility. Throughout the Christmas season, she spends her time with her best friend Matt, Laura, and all the vibrant characters decorating the town.
Like all romance novels, the characters are ridiculously over the top, but I personally enjoyed “The Knitting Sex Kittens were a formidable group of women, all over age sixty and all single, by either design, divorce, or death.” The town and characters are saturated in Christmas joy and cheer, and, let’s be honest, that is the only reason I read this or any Christmas novel at all. I’m here for the Christmas spirit.
Kate is an ambitious woman with lots to give but she ends up having many conversations along the lines of: “”I’m not looking for sparkle, Dad,” said Kate. “I am on a grown-up-woman mission to find a suitable, sensible partner who has no improper pride and is perfectly amiable.”” As a single woman in my thirties, I can, in some ways, identify with the want to search out compatibility over passion, but, and luckily Kate does figure it out, both is an option and the best option.
The biggest problem I had with The Twelve Dates of Christmas were the grammatical errors and typos. I’m not even going to blame Bayliss for this because the copy editor should have caught it. For me it was distracting, but the average reader probably won’t even pick up on it. I’m going to call this: editor problems. As in most rom-com books, the character development is lack luster at best, but it’s a fun, easy read to take our minds off the holiday stresses.
You can put this one on your holiday reading list to enjoy.
“Kate had to admit that her regime of pajamas, toast, and telly by seven thirty every night was not conducive to establishing a satisfying sex life.”
“But for her, contentment waned quite quickly to become a faint questioning, which bloomed into nagging doubt and ultimately wholehearted assuredness that it wasn’t right. Laura called it self-sabotage. Kate called it gut instinct.”
Originally published at https://onthebl.org on December 7, 2021.