Cover Image: Meet Me Under the Mistletoe

Meet Me Under the Mistletoe

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Member Reviews

This book did not match it’s title or cover unfortunately. I adored Bayliss’ first novel, The Twelve Dates of Christmas so was very sad that this book did not live up to my Christmas expectations.

This book dragged a bit, and it was more drama than Christmas to me which was disappointing. Politics and classism isn’t really my cup of tea when I’m trying to enjoy the holiday spirit. I also had trouble connecting with the main character Nory, even though I loved the description of her used bookshop. The setting of the book was cozy and magical and I loved the rich descriptions of the castle and scenery. Overall, I was expecting a lighter Christmas read and was also disappointed in the frequent mention of suicide without any content warnings or resources provided in the book.

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I love Christmas and I absolutely love Christmas stories. I’m huge in the hallmark channel, so romance Christmas stories are always a big hit with me. I will say that this is more of an adult Christmas story with all the curse words and with some of the talk the friends have.

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Jenny Bayliss strikes again with Meet Me Under the Mistletoe!

Only Jenny Bayliss’ can transport her reader from the squelching summer heat, to a Christmas winter-wonderland. However, it would be unfair to categorize Meet Me Under the Mistletoe as merely a Christmas book. When in fact, it is a far more complex book. It examines relationships between the family you are born into and the ones you create. It also tackles hard topics such as love, loss, socioeconomic status, racial injustice,education, etc.

One of the things I adored most about this book, was the protagonist, Nory, grew up with a large group of friends. Having attended boarding school during their formative years, the group became a tight knit unit. While they shuffled between romantic partners, the friendships were able to endure due to their adolescent relationships being more of misplaced love that blossomed into a chosen family.

I felt Bayliss did a fantastic job of making each character dynamic. This was a hard task as she had to round out about half a dozen personalities. I very much appreciated this as it allowed the reader to be fully invested in all of the subplot-lines and appreciate the character growth that took place. How she managed to make Guy likable by the end should be testament enough to her brilliant writing skills!

Special thanks to and Penguin Group Putnam for allowing me to read this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

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Was very excited to be approved to Read Jenny Bayliss' newest holiday read!. Nory, a bookseller in London, is reunited with her friends in her hometown. As any friend group has, drama ensues, particularly with a guy who she hooked up with in the past. But her reunion with Isaac, the gardener, renews her hope in love.

It was a cute story, but I did find myself skimming quite a bit. The characters were ok but not my favorite. This is a cute read but not a top holiday read for me for 2022

Thank you to PENGUIN GROUP Putnam, G.P. Putnam's Sons and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this digital arc

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I have been reading several holiday book this month (Christmas in July) and I have to say this one was not one of my favorites. I found it hard to finish.

Its the story of Nory who goes home because her friends are getting married. While home she runs into Issac, and they fall in love. She has to overcome the way she felt about him in their youth in order to be present in their current relationship.

Thank you Netgalley and Penguin Putnam Group for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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I wasn’t too impressed with this one but it was still a nice light read. A season for second chances is still my favorite book by Jenny Bayliss!

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I really enjoyed this book!

Such a lovely, cozy English countryside setting. Great Christmas elements, but not overly done, so it can be enjoyed anytime.

A full cast of interesting characters. Some you love to love, and some you love to hate.

Our MC Nory owns a second hand bookshop, so there are lots of bookish elements that I loved. Nory & Isaac have a sweet romance.

Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for this advance copy.

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I would have been happier if the author didn’t switch between Elinor and Nory so much that I wondered if they were two different people through the first two chapters. Sweet story, it’s always fun to have a bookish character.

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A used bookstore owner is reunited with old friends for a holiday wedding at a castle. Secret relationships, old wounds, new romance, and family secrets all come to light as this tight knit group of friends are spending time together. Elinor “Nory” Noel is reunited with her old school mates and friends when two of her friends from her private school days are getting married in a castle. Along the way Nory finds herself encountering an old crush, the son of a gardener that she had a crush on when she was younger. When past relationship secrets get out and friendships are tested, things will get out of hand and this holiday romance will definitely take a turn. Isaac is the son of a gardener who is now the gardener for the castle and he has a huge dislike for Nory’s friend and for their private school privilege. I’m going to be real honest, I just was not feeling this book, the romance, or even the characters. I wasn’t invested in Nory and I was most definitely not seeing the chemistry between her and Isaac. I wasn’t even really getting a Christmas romance vibe from this book which was unfortunate. Nory and her friends were flawed, and honestly the rivalry between Nory and Issac wasn’t even much of a rivalry. he was a the poor son of a gardener and she was the fancy private school kid, but it doesn’t really discuss how their relationship was or how there was any grounds for romance between them. Honestly this one just missed the mark for me and i was hoping for a Christmas romance but unfortunately this one did not hit the spot. So while this one didn’t work for me, maybe it’ll be the right one for you. Definitely give it a go if you are looking for more drama romance story rather than Christmas romance.

*Thanks Netgalley and PENGUIN GROUP Putnam, G.P. Putnam's Sons for sending me an arc in exchange for an honest review*

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Merry Christmas in July! 🎄So of course I had to dive into a Christmas read to celebrate.

“Meet me Under the Mistletoe “by Jenny Bayliss was a story about a Nory and her friends getting together again for a wedding located in a beautiful castle. The very castle that a certain long ago crush Isaac works at. Nory was content with her simple life but back with her friends and quite literally falling at the feet of Isaac she is questioning her decisions and future. This book had me wanting to curl up in a cozy blanket with my cocoa the whole way through. I loved the setting and the cast of characters and each of their personalities brought a different element to Nory. Fun read would definitely recommend for that TBR for the holidays. Releases 9/27/22


#julesbookshelf #arc #netgalley #meetmeunderthemistletoe #jennybayliss #christmasreads #bookstagram

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Meet Me Under the Mistletoe follows Nory who goes back to her hometown because her friends are getting married. The reunion brings back a bunch of memories for Nory and she funs into her former classmate Isaac. Soon the two end up falling for each other and forgetting the past. And soon Nora questions the kind of life she wants to live.

So I was very excited to read this one because I loved the Twelve Date of Christmas. But I really hated this book. It did not give me those warm hoilday vibes that I wanted from a Christmas book. I found the overall story very boring. I really didn't feel like much happened in this book. I struggled to finish this one. Overall I don't think I would suggest this one.

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3 stars

One of these days, I am going to find a holiday romance book that actually delivers on making Christmas a part of the story.

Meet Me Under the Mistletoe is less of a Christmas romance than it is a women's fiction novel about a city bookseller who returns to her country roots and falls in love with a childhood nemesis while preparing for her best friend's wedding. There's certainly nothing wrong with that storyline, but don't market this book as a holiday romance when most of the book takes place in November and there are maybe four references to Christmas.

On top of the lack of Christmas, I found myself not emotionally connecting with the central romance of this book. I didn't feel like the backstory of the two characters was particularly well-developed amid all of the other relationships and plotlines, which creates a bigger issue when the feelings that Nory had for Isaac in their youth play such a huge part in the development of their present-day relationship. The third-act breakup can be seen coming a mile away and feels particularly forced considering that Isaac expressly states multiple times that he doesn't want Nory to do something that she then decides to do anyway.

The banter in the friend group, some great quotes about books, and the castle setting were definitely the saving graces of this book for me (although I found it interesting how much banter about sex there was only to have the romance be closed door). Considering that I wasn't the biggest fan of The Twelve Dates of Christmas, I'm thinking that this might just be a matter of my tastes not aligning with this particular author!

Thank you to NetGalley and G.P. Putnam's Sons for an ARC of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review!

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Elinor (Nory) Noel is the owner of Serendipitous Seconds, an antique second hand bookstore. She's always been a bit hapless in love but content with her quiet bookish life... or is she? Two of her friends from her private school friend are getting married in the quaint castle that they were students in. As the reunion gets underway and surrounded by her friends and past memories, Nory has a second chance for a Christmas time love.

I love nothing more than a second chance love story and especially at Christmas time. I mean hello, the beautiful snow, Christmas trees, lights and all in a countryside castle? Yes, please!! I thought this story was cute, however it felt very long and drawn out. There was more focus on the friend group and the class divide and elitism than the blossoming romance. I would have liked to see more of the relationship between the two love interests.

Thank you to NetGalley for the opportunity to review this e-ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.

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A group of boarding school classmates reunite at a castle in the English countryside for the holiday wedding of two of their friends. Past secrets, tragedies and traditions, old crushes, family secrets and a tight knit group of friends has the makings for a solid Christmas read.

From the author of Twelve Dates of Christmas (which I loved), this book didn’t quite have the same Christmas vibe, despite being set in a castle all decorated for Christmas and a main character with the name of Nory Noel. I enjoyed this story, but I didn’t love it. I enjoyed the complexities of a large group of friends with very distinct, sometimes strong personalities and shared experiences sticking together and loving each other no matter their shortcomings. I enjoyed the romance of two childhood enemies reuniting and I enjoyed the family dynamics. It just took awhile for me to really get into this book and I’m not 100% sure why. It was good and I’d recommend it for a Christmas read, but it’s not a book that I loved or that gave me all those hallmark Christmas movie feelings. I will say that the end of the book - the last 20% - was the best part of the book. It definitely picked up and did a great job tying everything together and finally gave me those nostalgic Christmas feelings!

Thank you to @netgalley and @putnambooks for the advanced digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Release date: September 27.

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I loved the plot, I loved the story but I just couldn’t get past some of the writing. I did not like that the author used full real names of characters and their nicknames. It made it confusing at times because of the number of characters that were in the story/ their relationship with one another. I did love the different family dynamics throughout and the socioeconomic status of the different friends said. Some parts seemed a bit unrealistic to me (some of the characters were a bit too dramatic for me.) In general, good story.

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This was such a lovely winter romance! I will say that this book was not too heavily revolved around Christmas — focused more on the wedding of the MC’s best friends’ wedding rather than the holiday.

I was instantly drawn to the descriptions of the castle, which is where the majority of the story took place. While this was a great setting for this romance novel, I couldn’t help but think that this would have also been the perfect setting for a mystery or thriller!

I enjoyed the story and the characters, but this book felt long to me. I could’ve gone without some of the scenes — there were a few that didn’t feel important to the story.

I recommend this book to anyone that wants to experience a countryside winter in London!

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Although predictable, a very cute cold weather read with fun characters and a fantastic setting.

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This is a cozy book but, missing some of what I usually want in a Christmas romance. This was centered more around friendship relationships than the actual romantic relationships.

Cute, cozy but, missing some of the actual Christmas romance that was promised.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publishing team for my free ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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I had high hopes for this book but finally gave up about 1/3 of the way through and DNF. I LOVED 12 dates of Christmas and really thought this would be similar but it was very dry and dull. I did not connect to the characters at all. Sad to DNF this one.

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: 3.5 out of 5. the 12 dates of christmas was light and cute so this one had promise. As with 12 dates this is a predictable but nice in My hallmark movie scale. It is still the traditional Made for TV Christmas story, but there was a little bit of confusion as to what it wanted to be. It was a little too convoluted to be just a Cute Christmas Romance, because you had the friends group storyline, the social commentary storyline, the wedding etc. However, there was so much to pack in and discover from the friend group, that that would have been a great book by itself if they had given more backstory. As it stands, I never got into the why they were friends as much, because I didn't have the backstory, but it took a hell of a lot of story bandwidth. A cute and predictable Christmas story, it just could have been more.

How much Christmas: A sprinkling of holly and quite a bit of snow. It is not a Christmas story but it does happen in Christmas so its acceptable level of Christmas

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