Kelly's Reviews > Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor

Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor by Lisa Kleypas
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Apr 28, 12

Read from April 27 to 28, 2012

This was an enjoyable book to read, with nice characters and a great premise. However, it was too short, and therefore the plot development was a bit stilted, and the overall flow was really rushed.

This is the story of Mark and Maggie. Mark, who has recently lost a sister, has also gained custody of her young daughter, Holly. The relationship between Mark and Holly is sweet, and I wish there had been more time to explore just that aspect of this book. Maggie is no stranger to loss, having lost her husband to cancer. The characters meet when Mark brings Holly to Maggie's toy store one day, and Maggie magically gets Holly to start talking again. I actually wish that it had taken longer for Holly to start talking, or that we had seen more "screen time" of the struggle this had been for Mark. It just seemed too easy, that Maggie makes a few comments about a magic shell and suddenly this little girl is cured of something child psychologists couldn't help with for six months in six minutes? Right.

Another aspect of the book that bothered me was that Mark was dating someone else for a good chunk of the book. That would have been fine, if there had then been equal air time for Mark and Maggie's relationship to develop and grow...but there wasn't. Like I said, the book was entirely too short. The romance doesn't have a chance to develop before the book is ending with a sudden HEA. I'm a bit baffled about this aspect of the book, too, because it is just a short book in general (barely over 200 pages) so I feel like there was definitely room to write at least 100 more pages to further develop the romance and the various relationships in the book (Mark-Holly, Mark-Maggie, Mark-Sam-Alex), it just wasn't used.

Overall, I loved the separate characters. I loved the interactions the main characters had with one another. I loved the setting. But all of this love was sort of ruined by the rushed pace of the book, and the abrupt ending. The book actually ends at 83% complete on my Kindle, which made the sudden end that much more surprising, because I still thought I had about 15% of a book to read. I really wish I could have given this book 4 Stars. I wanted to give this book 4 Stars, maybe more, but I just cannot. It didn't live up to its potential, which is really disappointing because I usually love Ms. Kleypas's novels. Too bad.
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Reading Progress

04/28/2012 page 186
88.0% "Wow. Exploding turkey, burning oven. These are some really awful "chefs." And, what stereotypes...men who cannot cook, woman that comes to the rescue..."

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