Book Review: The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss

I was determined to finish this book before Christmas hoping it would propel me into the holiday mood I always wish for every year. The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss did exactly that.

In case you are unfamiliar with the book, here is a brief synopsis.

From Goodreads:

“When it comes to relationships, thirty-four-year-old Kate Turner is ready to say “Bah, humbug.” The sleepy town of Blexford, England, isn’t exactly brimming with prospects, and anyway, Kate’s found fulfillment in her career as a designer, and in her delicious side job baking for her old friend Matt’s neighborhood café. But then her best friend signs her up for a dating agency that promises to help singles find love before the holidays. Twenty-three days until Christmas. Twelve dates with twelve different men. The odds must finally be in her favor . . . right? 

Yet with each new date more disastrous than the one before–and the whole town keeping tabs on her misadventures–Kate must remind herself that sometimes love, like mistletoe, shows up where it’s least expected. And maybe, just maybe, it’s been right under her nose all along.” 

The Twelve Dates of Christmas is just as cliché as you might imagine it, however, that was just what I was looking for.

It was easy to tell Christmas was going to feel and be different this year due to COVID-19, so it was wonderful to read (leading up to the big day) a novel that consists of every holiday reference one could think of. From the activities that ensued (ice skating, caroling, etc.), the description of the Christmas markets, right down to the explanation of what was being cooked or baked. Although many people weren’t able to partake in many of the activities that occurred in the book, reading about them felt like the next best thing.

Book cover for The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss.

The romance in The Twelve Dates of Christmas felt warm and cozy (even if some of the romances didn’t work out), and I felt like I was rooting for Kate Turner to find her match the entire time hoping each date would be ‘the one’.

Overall, there wasn’t much character development with the main characters. Nor was there any huge plotline that contained twists and turns but nonetheless, it was the exact book I was looking for at this time of year. A book that made me feel warm and optimistic.

Rating: 3/5 


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