ARC Review – Christmas in Vermont by Anita Hughes


Chick Lit, Romance| 304 pages | 10.15.2019 | St. Martin’s Griffin


2I wanted to love this novel. I am a big fan of cheesy Christmas romances, Vermont, and snowy winters. The book had the right setting. It had theoretically great characters. It had the potential for a great ‘we reconnected after many years’ romance.

But what it also had was a huge set of stereotypes. There were women who were damsels in distress, there were women who looked like they would make it on their own but then, in the end, needed a dude to make their lives complete, and then there was the best friend who encompassed to be the biggest problem. Why would you have a professionally successful woman with two kids who is per the protagonist’s words “having the best of both worlds: being a mother and not sacrificing her job, and on top of that the perfect marriage” complain about every single thing her kids do when she has to babysit them on her own, fly to an all-inclusive resort the first chance she gets where a nanny will watch her kids, and make any excuse for her man who opted to go on a skiing trip with his buddies rather than spend the time between Christmas and New Year’s Eve with this family????? Why is that your example of a strong professional woman who is also a mother????? Moreover, while the plot started out super cute with the engraved watch it quickly turned into an almost stalker sort of situation, all under the name of synchronicity!

I am very disappointed in this book. Come on people, we live in 2019! We can have cute and cheesy romance novels without sacrificing the strength and independence of women. We can use the usual and predictable plots of romance novels and still have strong female leads and supporting characters. That doesn’t make men look weak. We don’t need damsels in distress to have strong male leads. And we most certainly don’t need to make women into stalkers to get the man of their dreams!

I would like to thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for my advanced copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

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