Happy New Year! Sort of… Welcome to 2021! December’s book for The Ramblings Book Club was ‘The Little Christmas Shop on Nutcracker Lane’ by Jaimie Admans. I chose this book not only for its Christmas theme but it seemed like the hallmark-type of content I was craving. Perfect for December. After 2020 being such a shit storm, I thought something light, predictable and guaranteed to have a happy ending was just what I needed. Little did I know that the beginning of 2021 would be no different! Nevertheless, here is my ‘The Little Christmas Shop on Nutcracker Lane’ Book Review.

This is the sixth instalment of The Ramblings Book Club. If this is your first post, welcome! Please feel free to read The Ramblings Book Club post to learn more about the club and how to join. To put it simply, every month I upload a book review of what we have been reading the previous month. I also announce the next book chosen. It’s absolutely FREE! All you need to do is grab a copy of the book in whatever format pleases you and meet back here for the review and an opportunity for a chat about it.

December’s book was ‘The Little Christmas Shop on Nutcracker Lane’ by Jaimie Admans. A light-hearted easy read about love, tradition and Christmas of course! Here’s a quick recap:

Nia Maddison has always believed that wishes come true on Nutcracker Lane. So, when she gets the opportunity to run her own Christmas gift shop on the most magical street in town, it feels like her wishes have been finally granted.
But working late one night, Nia discovers yet another boyfriend has cheated on her. As she trudges home - alone, again - she passes the (supposedly) magical nutcracker and half-joking thinks a wish can't hurt. Cracking a nut in its mouth, she wishes to find Prince Charming.
The next day Nia gets to work to find another decoration shop has opened directly across the lane from her own, and she can't resist having a nose around.
Whilst there, she accidentally backs into a human-sized Nutcracker, knocking it over and breaking it. Mortified, she flees from the store but when she gathers her resolve to go back and apologise, she stumbles across the gorgeous shop owner James, who looks exactly like Prince Charming...
Could her Christmas wish from the night before really be coming true?

The Little Christmas Shop on Nutcracker Lane Book Review

Rating: 2 out of 5.

I’ll be honest with you… I didn’t finish it. Christmas kind of got on top of me and to be honest, the story didn’t grip me enough to keep me from my slumber to read it. I got about halfway through. The main character and her love interest have only just realised they like each other maybe more than neighbouring shop keepers. I couldn’t get invested in the characters personally because of the hallmark taste to it. Plus, I don’t think that was the author’s intention.

What I liked

I liked the simplicity of it all. A girl who loves Christmas, working on Nutcracker Lane, a traditional lane of Christmas shops she used to visit as a little girl and achieved the childhood dream of having her own shop there. So cute, I wish life really was that lovely and simple. Her traditions of Christmas and the description of everything in this story is spot on. Obviously, I don’t know how it ends but I assume it is happily ever after; she saves the lane and gets the man and he learns to love Christmas because she loves it and he loves her. Or something gushy like that?

What I didn’t like

Too predictable. I know I asked for predictability but the fact that the most Christmassy person falls in love with a ‘Grinch’ is just a tad obvious. But I guess that’s the Hallmark charm. I also couldn’t subscribe to the idea that her love interest might just be a Nutcracker that has come to life. A tad too far fetched for my liking. A perfect Christmas lane of Christmas shops where everyone is nice and isn’t struggling to pay their rent is far fetched enough for me!

To Sum Up…

To sum up, it was predictable, nothing too exciting happens, the Christmas Hallmark movie you want in book form. As previously stated, I couldn’t finish it and I don’t feel like I’m missing out if I don’t. It’s worth noting, I read this on my Kindle and I wonder if sometimes that dubs my motivation to continue with a book. Without the physical turning of pages and feeling how far into a book you are changes the reading experience for me.

January’s Book

The little Christmas shop on nutcracker lane book review... showing January's book

January’s book was chosen by you lovely people! Today, I put a poll on my Instagram about which book should be the newest addition to The Ramblings Book Club and you chose:

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson

Which I think is the perfect book to kick off 2021. Being in another Lock Down can really kick you in the mental health balls so, I would appreciate knowing how to not give a f*ck right now. I am very excited to read this one! It’s a very different book to what we have read so far in The Ramblings Book club but I think it’s something we could all find valuable.

About the Book

In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be “positive” all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

For decades, we’ve been told that positive thinking is the key to a happy, rich life. “F**k positivity,” Mark Manson says. “Let’s be honest, shit is f**ked and we have to live with it.” In his wildly popular Internet blog, Manson doesn’t sugarcoat or equivocate. He tells it like it is-a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is his antidote to the coddling, let’s-all-feel-good mindset that has infected modern society and spoiled a generation, rewarding them with gold medals just for showing up.

There are only so many things we can give a f**k about so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real-talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.

About the Author

Mark Manson is an American self-help author and blogger. Manson started his first blog about dating advice in 2008. In 2010, he started a new blog called Post Masculine (now defunct) which provided general life advice for men. Manson moved his blog to markmanson.net in 2013. In 2015, Manson published a blog article “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck”, which would form the basis of his second book by the same name.

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