**I received this book in a Goodreads giveaway, but all thoughts and opinions are my own**
Three women, three secret wishes, one shopping mall Santa Claus…who might just be the real thing. Santa’s promised each of these women the perfect man for them, but none of them quite believe it. And who can blame them? Riley’s fiance dumped her for her bridesmaid 3 weeks before the wedding; Noel’s too focused one keeping her house to even be looking for love; and Jo’s not looking forward to raising her baby girl alone while her husband is away in the Navy.
This is a light, fluffy read. Which is exactly what I had expected, and was exactly what I was looking for. Three ordinary women, three fairly ordinary problems, three silly stories.
That being said, I wanted a little more depth (?) to this story. As sweet as Riley, Noel, and Jo could be, I found them really whiny for most of the book. There was a lot of wallowing, a lot of feeling dumpy and worrying about putting on weight even though everyone else is making comments about how beautiful they are, and a lot of whining. I also found that a lot of the “comic relief” wasn’t really that comical. A lot of the events that were clearly supposed to be funny just made me feel cringy, and most of the jokes fell flat for me.
Also, for a book that was set at Christmas time, and had “Christmas” in the title, it really didn’t feel all that Christmassy. The few Christmas scenes that put me in a holiday spirit, I was pulled out of by comments that just felt out of touch. (A lot of young people these days have never seen/heard of It’s A Wonderful Life? REALLY?)
The romances were fairly predictable, but still managed to warm my Grinch heart. I also appreciated that at no point in the story was the cheating storyline portrayed as something acceptable. Even when the argument is brought up that if the 2 characters were meant to be together, he never would have cheated, the next sentence condemns him and labels him as a jerk. YASS.
If you are looking for a light, fluffy, Hallmark Holiday Special in book form, check out Three Christmas Wishes by Sheila Roberts. If you’re easily second-hand embarrassed, hard to impress in the humour department, or looking for something with a little more depth to it, maybe give it a pass.