In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Holidaze take me away! This is a fabulous story wrapped up in a cozy warm cup of chocolate with a Hersey’s kiss on top. In typical CLo style, our adorably frazzled heroine Maelyn Jones is in love with the unattainable older Andrew Hollis. The very first chapter, however, is all about a drunk make-out session between Maelyn and Theo – yep, Andrew’s little brother. What happens next and thru out the book is poor Maelyn stepping into a Groundhog’s Day loop reliving the week before Christmas in search of her “happiness”.
We meet the three families that vacation together in a cabin in Park City, Utah every Christmas. You will be totally jealous of the family dynamic – even with a divorce (Mae’s parents) – still spending their holidays together and keeping up the annual traditions. The parents have been close friends since college so Maelyn, Theo and Andrew (the kids) have spent Christmas together their entire lives. So they are really more siblings than dating options. Alas, our Maelyn has been in love with Andrew “since I knew what love was.”
Maelyn ends up making a wish to the powers that be “to show her happiness”. Bam, the mayhem begins in her endless rehashing of the events of this exact week. Our authorettes Christina and Lauren are especially good at writing some super funny scenes that had me literally laughing out loud. After reliving the same family breakfast a few times already – Mae gets a little “frizzly” in the insanity of her Groundhog’s day reruns. The funniest line of the book, she utters: “These are the best blintzes I’ll have all year, and who knows when I’ll get them again?” I look at Benny and wink. “Well, except me. For sure I’ll get them again.” Benny, my favorite character, is the one that Maelyn (continually) entrusts her dilemma with each rehash. He is a treat – I want an Uncle Benny!
Maelyn finally spills her love for Andrew and finds her happiness in an upstairs cabin closet via Hershey white peppermint kisses. Another great quote from Mae: “I’ve essentially handed my heart over to the person who’s had it on reserve for half my life, and I’m terrified that he doesn’t realize what he’s holding.” As a reader, we are constantly wondering when she will be swept back to the beginning of the loop. You will need to read it to find out!
In a Holidaze is a funny quirky trip thru a light-hearted, tight knit “found” family Christmas vacation. You will laugh out loud, maybe shed a tear, and come away with a warm fuzzy feeling. Like I said, you will be jealous of the group dynamic and all their crazy Christmas traditions. Christina Lauren knocked it out of the park just as they knocked out our heroine a few times! Grab the book, sit in front of the fireplace, and enjoy the Holidays!