Eeek, a review!! Catch it before it runs away!
Jingle Boy by Keiran Scott
Published: September 23rd, 2003 by Delacorte
Genre: Either contemporary fiction or romantic comedy, I think. With Christmas thrown in for flavour... I'm not good at putting books in genres, am I?
Page Count: 230 in my paperback copy
Part of a series? Nope, it's a standalone.
Summary (from goodreads): Sixteen-year-old Paul Nicholas is a self-confessed Christmas fanatic. That’s why he’s so smitten with Sarah — a girl who smells like peppermint and thinks picking out presents to the strains of “Winter Wonderland” is the ultimate afternoon activity. But when he catches Sarah making out with Santa Claus at the Paramus Park mall, his dad’s over-the-top lights catch the Nicholas house on fire, and his mom gets fired from Fortunoff’s because of something he did for Christmas for Sarah, Paul gets caught in a downward spiral of holiday gloom. This year, the spirit of Scrooge has settled in — and it’s not going to be pretty. Or will the spirit of the holiday prevail?
Review: I'm going to say right off the bat that it's hard for these kind of books and me to click. That's not to say I don't like them, it's just that it's easier for me to find little flaws and nitpick at them. That said, I quite enjoyed this one. The writing was good, the characters were interesting and all in all it was a cute book.
Plot: It's 7:30am, I've been awake since 3am and this is a library book, so this section is going to suck a little. But you all love me so you don't care.
Anyways, the plot was kind of predictable, at least the romance part. The non-romance plot was rather unique, which was good. It balances that way, right?
Characters: Jingle Boy is narrated by Paul in first person, which I thought was neat, because I don't read that many books narrated by boys, and he had a very unique voice. One of my favourite quotes from him is when he mentioned How the Grinch Stole Christmas and adds, "(The original cartoon form in its purest form, not the psycho, acid-trip Jim Carey version.)"
My favourite character, though, was Holly, his best friend. She was just completely awesome. She hated Christmas because her father left her mother on Christmas Day for a department store elf. (Revealed on page 6, so it's not a spoiler.) When Paul told her that he was feeling down on Christmas (to paraphrase because I don't want want to reveal a plot point) he describes her as having "a look of maniacal glee on her face not unlike the one the Grinch sports after he comes up with the idea to steal Christmas from the Whos."
Cons, complaints, bad stuff, etc.: There was one particular part that bugged me. It's partly described in the summary, but if you don't want to read it, just skip over this part. Paul buys a necklace for Sarah from the jewelry store his mother works at. He gets her to ring it up, using her employee discount and VISA, and she gets fired when she has to return it without a receipt. Here's my issue with this. Most stores don't let you put yourself through. My mom's store doesn't even let her put through relatives. And you definitely cannot do it with a credit card purchase and employee discount. So it just... doesn't work. I know different stores have different policies, but I'd think that that one would be pretty universal.
PG-13 stuff: Not much, really. If you were to really nitpick, there might be a couple things, but there was no cursing or sex or violence or anything.
Cover comments: The cover picture I'm using here isn't identical to the one on the copy I read, but the only real difference is that the title is in green, not red. I just couldn't find a good picture of the paperback cover. I rather like the cover. Especially the boy. :P
Conclusion: It was a good, cute book, nothing spectacular, but good writing and characters and a sweet happy ending. It's the kind of book you read when you're looking for something light and cute (and funny!!). Plus it's a good read for the holidays, when most of us could use something light, right? Three and a half roses.
Apparently while reading this, I decided that I should run the world because, as I notes several times, boys are dumb and weird. I really wonder about myself sometimes.
Vocabulary: Expenditure. Definition: 1. the act of expending something, esp. funds; disbursement; consumption. 2. something that is expended; expense: Unnecessary expenditures include those for luxury items. (Thank you, dictionary.com.)
Okay, that's everything.
Peace and cookies,