Monday, 18 April 2016

[REVIEW] My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories

I am worried about being in love, because it involves asking so much. —David Levithan, Your Temporary Santa

Title: My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories
Author: Varies
Edited by: Stephanie Perkins
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Publishing Year: 2014
Number of Pages: 336
ISBN: 978-146-6863-89-7
I rate it 3.5/5 stars

One thing I love about short story written by various authors is that I can meet so many authors without having a long time reading their two-hundred-pages-or-so books. (Yes, I am that lazy, sorry~) x) But it is not really a reference point whether I would read their other books later. It is not fair, because who knows the authors were not in their writing-state whenever they wrote that story, right?

I have met several authors in this book, say Ally Carter with her Gallagher Girls series, Gayle Forman with her If I Stay series, Jenny Han with her To All the Boys I've Loved Before (which I love so much!), David Levithan with his Every Day, Stephanie Perkins with her Anna and the French Kiss, Rainbow Rowell with her Eleanor & Park, and Kiersten White with her The Chaos of Stars (this one I've just read last month and I loved it too!), though I didn't review all of them here. :p I love their previous books, and that's one of the reason I expected so much when they contributed in this short story.

But the thing about expect-something-too-much is often left us with disappointment. x) This happened to me when I read David Levithan's in this book with his Your Temporary Santa. I still love the way he wrote the stories here, but the problem is I didn't get the chemistry between the narrator and Connor. Probably because they were gay and I am honestly new in this genre. :"

"We all lose. We all love and we all lose and we go on loving just the same." —Kelly Link, The Lady and the Fox

Rainbow Rowell's Midnights is the first story in this book. And I can say that as the starter, the way Rowell's wrote the story is enough to mesmerized the reader to keep reading this book, finding out what kind of other sweet story would be delivered to the readers. Not yet to mention our lovable characters Noel and Mags. This is one of my faves, btw!

I thought Ally Carter story would be kind of spy thing, as she always did with her books. :p But I was wrong. With her Star of Bethlehem, she wrote about the girl named Lydia who needed an escape place. At the airport, she exchange her plane ticket with the girl, Hulda, who really wanted to go to New York, the place where Lydia now avoided. So she became the wrong Hulda and lived with the family who thought she was the real Hulda, except Hulda's boyfriend who knew exactly that she was not Hulda also pretending about the whole thing to his family. This one is sweet and unique.

Jenny Han with Polaris is Where You'll Find Me told story about Natalie, human born who adopted by Santa the elves. This one is sweet, I mean the ending part. I honestly hate but love that it ended up that way! *I know this is confusing* :v

Tomorrow would be different. There really was no such thing as a minor miracle. —Gayle Forman, What the Hell Have You Done, Sophie Roth?

It's A Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown by Stephanie Perkins is one of my favorites too! It's about a girl named Marigold who wanted to ask a boy who sell the Christmas tree to be the voice of one of the character to her new animation. I love the story, characters, the chemistry between them! LOVE!!! I just know this is my favorite the moment I read its ending with a big smile on my face. :)

What the Hell Have You Done, Sophie Roth? by Gayle Forman is one of the sweet stories, too. Sophie was not coming from a wealthy family. So when she got the scholarship into a pastoral-liked university, she took it even if she didn't like it at all. There she met a Black Guy on Campus who unexpectedly fun to talk with. Aside from the sweet story and the chemistry between the characters, thing I can't seem to forget from this book is THAT PIE! ;_;

Welcome to Christmas, CA by Kiersten White is about a girl named Maria who lived in a not-city-not-even-a-town place named Christmas, somewhere in California. Maria really hated that place because she thought she wouldn't get a real life if she stuck there forever. So she collected money, only from the tips she got from her mother's restaurant, and that made her hate her family and that place more than ever. But everything was changed when a new chef was coming. Aaaaaaak. this is my most favorite! It's not only a sweet story but also a heart-warming story about the meaning of family and home. I was so emotional when I reached the ending (I was sobbing). xD

I wish I could tell him to remember every single thing about today. Not just whatever presents he got but his family, too. Because one day he'd too far from home, sitting on a snow-covered stoop with a girl he might like, laughing, and he'd want to picture how they all used to be. —Matt de la Pena, Angels in the Snow

As I said in the beginning, I met several authors I never read before. And that surprised me that I loved some of theirs, say Matt de la Pena and Myra McEntire. But there was also some that didn't meet my satisfaction—even I did skimming when I read it.

Matt de la Pena with his Angels in the Snow is a simple yet sweet story. A boy named Shy had to cat sit on his manager's apartment whole Christmas holiday, since he didn't plan to go anywhere because he apparently had no cash, even for food himself. But then there was this angel who helped him. :p Even if the story was not so special, I really really enjoyed the writings!

The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link actually had a nice premise, but the ending was so unclear. It was also the same with Krampuslauf by Holly Black. In this story I didn't get chemistry between the characters. This is one of the story I did skimming. :(

Shame leads to secrets, and secrets lead to lies, and lies ruin everything. Especially friendship. —Myra McEntire, Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus

Beer Bucket and Baby Jesus by Myra McEntire was more like a friendship than true love story, imo. This one is about a troubled boy, Vaughn, and a daughter pastor named Gracie. I love McEntire's words here. Well it was not sweet words which happened to be inside every romance story. It was more like humor. I chuckled several times reading Vaughn's narration.

The last story was Laini Taylor's The Girl Who Woke the Dreamer. I expected so much too from this story because I've heard much of Laini Taylor's before, but it didn't seem I met my expectation. Actually it was okay. The idea was nice but I didn't feel anything when I read it. It was just... flat. :( I did skimming too for this twelfth story.

I love that Rainbow Rowell started this book with a sweet story about Noel and Mags. And that makes me conclude that the last story should be the best or at least it ends with story that makes your heart warm. No offense, but I think it would be better if this short story ended by Kiersten White's or Stephanie Perkins'.

Even if some of stories might be disappointing, I'm so glad that I gave this book a chance. Well, I found some new authors! And some stories are gems, really! If you are busy with works and just have a little time to read, I recommend you this book because you can read one story in one sit and read another stories week later the day after. And if you didn't like the story, it's okay to do skimming like I did. :D

"...that if you let a single life event define you, then all you need to change things—if you want them to change—is another." —Myra McEntire, Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus 
But it doesn't matter anymore if you can't find my home. I found it for myself. —Kiersten White, Welcome to Christmas, CA


  1. Buku ini kayaknya bakal terbit juga deh di Indo, semoga begitu ^^

    1. Waaaah.. amiin. Semoga aja nanti covernya begini yak. :v Lucu sih. :3

  2. Wishlist! Semoga beneran diterjemahin :D Aku suka kumcer dari penulis terkenal, apalagi banyak yang favorit. Bisa juga sebagai ancang-ancang kalau ada nama penulis yang bukunya belum pernah aku baca, setidaknya tahu gaya dia bercerita :)

    1. Iya, Sulis. Dari buku ini aku juga bisa kenalan sama penulis2 yg tadinya gak pernah aku denger. ^^


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