Series: All I Want for Christmas #1
Published by Wise Wolf Books on 2021-10-28
Length: 216 pages
Reviewing Kindle from Kindle Unlimited
Reading Challenges: 2021 New Release Challenge, COYER 2021
It's a Wonderful Life meets Wish Upon A Star in this Christmas-themed young adult contemporary romance.
Graham Wallace has been in love with the girl next door for a decade. Unfortunately, she's been dating his best friend for the past two years. Out of sheer desperation, Graham makes a wish on a shooting star—all he wants for Christmas is Sarah Clarke.
When Graham wakes up the next morning, everything has changed, and he's the one who's been dating Sarah for the past two years, not his best friend. Graham assumes the wish would have only come true if he and Sarah were meant to be together, but as it becomes clear that he and Sarah bring out the worst in each other, not the best, and as he starts to fall for the new girl in town, Graham wonders if some wishes come true in order to show us what's not meant to be.
I adored this book! All I Want for Christmas is the Girl Next Door by Chelsea Bobulski is the first in a holiday romance series that is sure to leave you smiling and get even the Scrooge in your life in the holiday spirits. In this book, we meet Graham Wallace who has been in love with his next door neighbor for as long as he can remember. The only problem is she is dating his best friend. After a heart-breaking confrontation, Graham wishes on a shooting star that he’d gotten the girl first. Never did he imagine that his wish would come true.
If you are having a bit of deja vu, you are not alone. This book puts off major It’s a Wonderful Life vibes without being a straight retelling. Like George Bailey, Graham is so lost in his own heartache that he is blind to what is right in front of him. I found myself wanting to reach through the pages to slap him or give him a hug depending on the current event.
Graham’s wish changes his life overnight, quite literally. He has the girl, but everything else is off. His best friend is no longer a wiry, geeky gamer. Now he’s a popular wrestling star at school. Sarah is no longer the sweet, care-free, fun-loving neighbor, but a highly competitive, wants-to-go pro ballerina. Sarah’s parents, who used to love Graham, now can’t stand him. Despite these obvious changes and small personality changes, Graham is determined to make this work. However his guilt over his friend’s unhappiness slowly eats at him. Even Sarah, so sure about her future and her self, is now insecure and a little clingy which Graham tries to overlook as something he just didn’t notice in their other life.
Then enters Piper, the new girl in town who is currently living with her grandmother. Piper was already on Graham’s radar before his ill-fated wish, but as an unattainable girl. Now she is working at the local bookstore with him, and suddenly he finds himself wishing for his life to go back. He should be happy right? He’s got the girl of his dreams, so why is he fantasizing about the new girl? This question brings about all sorts of self-examination for Graham, and as the reader it was nice to see.
Overall I really enjoyed All I Want for Christmas is the Girl Next Door. It’s a relatively short read, clocking in at just over 200 pages, but full of wit and the butterflies of first love, not to mention the angst of YA. If you are looking for a sweet holiday romance to read this year, I highly recommend it!
This book counts towards #COYER 2021 Scavenger Hunt item #6.