Thursday, November 5, 2009

Blog Tour Review: Over the Holidays by Sandra Harper

This blog tour happened a while ago, but I didn't have the book on time. See my post from the day of for info about the author.

Title:Over the Holidays

Author:Sandra Harper


Recommended?It's hard to say; It might upset you if you love Christmas like I do. It is an easy read, though, and I guess I could see some people liking it.

What I Have to Say: My initial reaction to this book is that it's unfortunately. . .boring. I hate saying it, but it's just a fact that it left me bored more often than not.
My second reaction was: did this book have a point? It seemed to be just lots and lots of complaining about the holidays. The tag line for the book is "the best holiday traditions are meant to be broken." Before reading the book, I didn't get it. I mean, I know I don't want to break my best holiday traditions. They're the best, and I love them, so why break them?
Then, reading the book, I thought maybe the author was trying to say that, often times, people feel stuck and claustrophobic by tradition (although I don't know that the traditions causing this reaction would be the "best" traditions) - and that it's okay to change them and replace them with better ones.
So I kept waiting and waiting for these better traditions to come along. Or at least for something to happen. Other than the main characters being annoying. Nothing ever did happen. At least not that I noticed. The characters never changed, new traditions were never found, nothing ever happened that needed to be resolved and thus nothing was ever resolved.
I was thinking about giving this book 3 stars, mostly because it was an easy read, and how suppose I could see how it might be pleasant for someone (someone not me). But since starting this review, I realize just how much I really didn't like it. Christmas is supposed to be a time about love and forgiving and happiness, and this book is the opposite of all of those things. I love Christmas. This book does not.
And did I mention that it goes nowhere?
The one good thing I have to say about it is that it wasn't a bad reading experience. I read it in two days, and, despite it being boring, it was an incredibly easy read. The flow of the story was very nice.

Summary(from GoodReads):It's only December 1, and Vanessa Clayton has been dreading Christmas since she spotted tinseled trees at her local mall in September. Thankfully, she and her husband, JT, can't afford to drag their twin boys across the country to New England for the annual celebration at her stuffy sister-in-law Patience's home. Not that Vanessa has prepared a proper Christmas for her family in years, and she has less time than ever since she agreed to consult on the script of a local play. Her older sister, Thea, is no help -- she'd rather make art and flirt with surfers than babysit her nine-year-old nephews. Then Patience drops a holiday stress bomb: Her family will come to California instead.

In between "baking" cinnamon rolls for the school potluck and overbearing Patience testing her patience, Vanessa can't stop thinking about the difficult but charming playwright at work. Meanwhile, Patience's teenage daughter, Libby, obsesses over a college boy she has met by the pool, and Thea searches desperately for the meaning of Christmas -- for her latest installation, of course. As their holiday plans go comically awry, these four women discover the true spirit of the season is hidden in every festive surprise.

Disclaimer: This book was received for free from Pocket Books in exchange for a review.


Tales of Whimsy said...

Great review. I think I'll still check it out. I love the cover.

Ivana said...

Oh, that's too bad, I expected much more from a book with such a great cover...I too love my holiday customs, it makes me feel cozy and safe. I don't want to break my traditions either!

Miss Haley said...

haha I'm so glad I'm not the only one who gave this book a 2/5 star review :D it was pretty mediocre.

Felicity Grace Terry said...

Funny how you can sometimes look at a cover and be put off the book. Unlike Juju, I looked at the cover and thought 'awful'. If I'd seen this in a shop I wouldn't have been encouraged to pick it up. Thanks for the review though.

Unknown said...

:( Dont you hate it when you pick up a book you think might be good only to find out it's not so much. :( I am sorry you did not like it much. Hopefully the next read will be much better! :)

Ashley said...

Ugh doesn't sound that great - I might just have to pass this one up. But the cover is soo cute!

My Contests

None for now!