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Two Kisses for Christmas: A 2-in-1 Christmas Collection

by Sheila Roberts

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512,640,908 (2.5)None
'Tis the season to fall in love with these two heartwarming novels fromUSA Todaybestselling author Sheila Roberts. The Snow Globe Kiley is tired of standing solo under the mistletoe--all she wants this Christmas is someone to spend her nights with, cozy by the fire. With one hopeful shake of an antique snow globe, Kiley begins a dazzling adventure....and discovers that sometimes the impossible becomes possible, and miracles really do come true. Nine Lives of Christmas Firefighter Zach is in serious need of help when it comes to finding the right woman. Sweet Merilee, who works in a pet shop, is perfect for him but is too shy to let him know she's interested. Maybe a matchmaking cat on his ninth life is just what they need to help them find their happily ever after. "Plenty of holiday cheer."--Publishers Weekly… (more)
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Two books in one, the second stronger than the first.

The first book, The Snowglobe was kind of Sisterhood Of the Traveling Pants but with a snowglobe that glimpses the future rather than jeans that magically fit every body. Unaware the book would feature all three friends, I hadn’t anticipated the first character Kiley’s POV coming to an end when it did nor did her story at that point feel like it had been fully fleshed out or closed out, so the sudden shift to Suzanne felt abrupt.

I appreciated that all three stories within Snowglobe covered different emotional territory, one about moving on after her boyfriend cheats with her sister, one about a woman too caught up in having the perfect life, and a third recovering from the loss of her grandmother. However, it seemed like there weren’t enough pages here to do three stories justice.

Kiley’s new romance barely scratched the surface, same goes for the third story when Allison knows someone for approximately five seconds before forming an attachment. There needed to be more development to truly buy into either scenario.

The middle plot had more successful pacing since it’s a take on A Christmas Carol and the overnight transformation is expected. The issue here is in Suzanne’s personality being so very intolerable from start to nearly finish, it really could have used a few sentences sprinkled here and there showing us what her husband loved enough about her to stick around for since I found Suzanne hard enough to live with for the duration of her story and it had me wondering how anyone could have tolerated her for the duration of a marriage.

The second book, The Nine Lives Of Christmas, focused on just one couple and fared better as far as the romance unfolding at a more natural pace. I liked the relative uniqueness of having Ambrose the cat’s POV and his machinations to bring together his new owner firefighter Zach and animal lover Merrilee, although the most engaging parts of the story for me ended up being Zach’s scenes with his mom and his step-sisters.

I mostly enjoyed this second story and I did think the concept of The Snowglobe was interesting even if the execution didn’t quite pull it off, however, in both novels my enjoyment was frequently undermined by judgments from the characters. I get that it made sense in The Snowglobe for Suzanne’s character to think that way, but it didn’t really make sense to me that nearly everyone in both books judged women for wearing form-fitting clothes, they noted how unattractive non-thin bodies are, and they shamed poor people for their shabby clothes and tacky décor, I honestly can’t recall anyone in these two books who struggles financially not being criticized for either their appearance or their home.

It would be one thing if these judgments popped up in just one narrow-minded POV, but it happened with the majority of characters and so frequently that it almost felt like recurring themes. I get that the world is full of people who think this way and even those who aim for kinder thoughts have moments where we think or say petty things, everyone has their flaws and I don’t expect fictional characters to all be super nice and open-minded, either, in fact that would probably be boring, but more balance in perspective would have been very welcome, it would have been good to hear a character point out that what a woman wears tells you nothing about who she is inside, it would have been good to hear someone recognize that beauty isn’t only found in thin bodies and for a character to notice that there are plenty of people out there who maybe don’t have a lot of money but they have plenty of creativity and style. ( )
  SJGirl | Jan 9, 2021 |
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'Tis the season to fall in love with these two heartwarming novels fromUSA Todaybestselling author Sheila Roberts. The Snow Globe Kiley is tired of standing solo under the mistletoe--all she wants this Christmas is someone to spend her nights with, cozy by the fire. With one hopeful shake of an antique snow globe, Kiley begins a dazzling adventure....and discovers that sometimes the impossible becomes possible, and miracles really do come true. Nine Lives of Christmas Firefighter Zach is in serious need of help when it comes to finding the right woman. Sweet Merilee, who works in a pet shop, is perfect for him but is too shy to let him know she's interested. Maybe a matchmaking cat on his ninth life is just what they need to help them find their happily ever after. "Plenty of holiday cheer."--Publishers Weekly

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