Monday, March 13, 2017

Starry Night - Debbie Macomber

Starry NightUgh.  Let's get it out of the way right now: I did not like this book.  I picked it up for a romance reading challenge I'm doing, to fulfill the category of "A Christmas romance," but it didn't really end up fitting that, and I disliked it so much that I don't think I could bring myself to count it anyway.  But here's the thing: I wasn't excited about that category to begin with, because Christmas romances are pretty terrible as a general rule.  Why?  Because authors use "the magic of the holidays" as an excuse to have people fall in love instantaneously.  In this regard, Starry Night was no exception.

Heroine Carrie is a society page writer for a newspaper in Chicago, but she hates writing the society page.  She finally decides to quit, but her editor tells her that if she can get an interview with the reclusive writer Finn Dalton, she can have any writing assignment she wants.  She agrees and sets out to find him, accomplishing the task in about two days even though no one else has been able to find out anything about him.  So she whisks herself off to Alaska and she and Finn get stuck together in his cabin for about 36 hours, during which they share about 20 minutes of conversation and, of course, fall in love.  Blargh.

The writing in this is not good.  It's all tell and no show.  Despite it constantly being said how smart Carrie is, she decides that heeled boots (but it's a low heel!) and her pea coat are suitable wear for winter in Alaska.  And the Northern Lights made her fall in love!  And she spends half the book sighing, "Oh, Finn," or "Oh, Mom," or "Oh, Daddy," depending on who she's talking to.  Finn loves Carrie one second and then decides to drive her away the next.  Sophie is a great, though pushy, friend one minute, and then she's basically breaking up Finn and Carrie the next.  And the whole thing is just so sickly sweet that I spent most of my time rolling my eyes and nursing a sugar-induced toothache.  It's just...uuuuugh.

I would definitely not pick up something by this author again.  I'm going to give it 2 stars out of 5, but that's only because at least it didn't turn outright preachy (another favorite trope of Christmas romances; hello, non-religious people can enjoy the Christmas season, too) and it was, thankfully, short.  Oh, and as another reviewer said, I did like the dog.

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