A Princess for Christmas
Author: Jenny Holiday
What I’m Talking About:
After giving an impassioned speech to the UN, Royal Highness Marie Joséphine Annagret Elena Princess of Eldovia is running late for a very important meeting and can’t seem to catch a break. Luckily young Gabby sees her and insists that her older, cab-driving brother Leo help her. Impressed with Leo’s kindness, Marie hires him to be her driver for the three days she is to remain in New York, which leads to friendship, attraction, and an invite for Leo and Gabby to spend Christmas in Eldovia.
A Princess for Christmas by Jenny Holiday is a Hallmark/Netflix Christmas movie with a side of sass. I love that the author knows this and pokes fun at the premise in her book:
“‘Oh my god, you are from a fake Hallmark country,’ Leo deadpanned.”
The story is an impossible, yet breezy romance between a foreign privileged princess and the average joe American male. Their meet-cute, made all the more adorable due to Gabby, and subsequent friendship are unlikely, which is part of the charm of the tale. The fact that they both lost parents near the holidays creates a near-instantaneous bond, and once Marie offers to help Leo buy feminine hygiene products for his little sister, their friendship is sealed.
Yet back in Eldovia, things aren’t quaint and perfect for Marie. Her father has been a miserable ass since the death of his wife, placing heavy burdens on Marie. She does all she can to please everyone without making waves, which compounds her problems, making life pretty miserable at times. The king is rude to Leo and his sister, and Marie gets overwhelmed. And here is where I had problems with the story. Leo and Marie both come off so childish at times. I love the simplicity of the “Hallmark romance,” but both MCs are also kind of bratty and immature. Leo has a huge chip on his shoulder, and it comes across in his dealings with the king, with Leo displaying outright disregard for the king and the country’s customs. Marie cries and pouts, giving the impression of a spoiled child.
Overall, A Princess for Christmas is an enjoyable, entertaining Christmas-themed romance. I wanted to love it, but I just liked it. There were slow parts, and sometimes the maturity level of the characters drove me batty. But they find their way to a lovely, touching HEA, giving me all the holiday feels.
My Rating: B- Liked It, but I had a few small issues
About the Book:
Leo Ricci’s already handling all he can, between taking care of his little sister Gabby, driving a cab, and being the super of his apartment building in the Bronx. But when Gabby spots a “princess” in a gown outside of the UN trying to hail a cab, she begs her brother to stop and help. Before he knows it, he’s got a real-life damsel in distress in the backseat of his car.
Princess Marie of Eldovia shouldn’t be hailing a cab, or even be out and about. But after her mother’s death, her father has plunged into a devastating depression and the fate of her small Alpine country has fallen on Marie’s shoulders. She’s taken aback by the gruff but devastatingly handsome driver who shows her more kindness than she’s seen in a long time.
When Marie asks Leo to be her driver for the rest of her trip, he agrees, thinking he’ll squire a rich miss around for a while and make more money than he has in months. He doesn’t expect to like and start longing for the unpredictable Marie. And when he and Gabby end up in Eldovia for Christmas, he discovers the princess who is all wrong for him is also the woman who is his perfect match.
Release Date: October 13, 2020
Series: Standalone; Book #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance; Holiday
Format(s): paperback (400 pages), e-book, audiobook
Book Source: Edelweiss
Amazon (affiliate link)