Thursday, 17 December 2015

Boyfriend By Christmas by Jenny Stallard

Around this time of year, my bookish news feed goes Christmas crazy with tales of romantic snow-laden romps, gingerbread hearts and kissing under the mistletoe. Call me a Grinch but I don’t really go in for the whole festive reads thing normally. Maybe some seasonal books where it gets a bit wintery or that happen to include Christmas but mostly I try to steer clear. 

However, when I read the premise of Boyfriend By Christmas I liked the sound of its How To Lose a Guy In Ten Days vibe and threw aside my anti-Christmas read mentality. 

In this tale, journalist Genie Havisham writes for a lifestyle website and is set the ultimate challenge by her Devil Wears Prada style boss: find a boyfriend by Christmas or find a new job. With not only her love life but now her beloved career on the line too, Genie throws herself into the perilous world of dating to snag herself a man and save her job. 

She goes on a wide variety of different dates, trials all the latest dating apps that are a crucial part of dating in the modern world, and has the help of her sister and trusty colleagues to help her along. She sets up a blog to document her experiences which being so public, doesn’t always help the situation. 

As a fellow single girl in London, I found many of Genie’s experiences to be very relatable which made me enjoy the story more and I'm sure many other daters (past or present) can too. The perils of reigniting things with an ex, awkward first dates, the trials and tribulations of Tinder... a little something for everyone on the dating spectrum!

Genie's character on the whole is very relatable; she’s pretty down to earth although she does drink an awful lot! I loved the relationship she has with her two work colleagues and their friendship really complemented the story. 

I think the challenge as a premise is really clever. It hooks you in and you once Genie has the dating ball rolling, you can’t help but want to see it through to the end to see if she gets her BBC. The best thing for me about the book is how funny it is. Genie has some great one liners and her exploits are thoroughly entertaining to read. 

There is a great sense humour running throughout the whole book which adds to the festive fun and keeps things upbeat. As well as romance, there is plenty of wisdom about friendship and lifestyle choices wrapped up in a fun and engaging tale. 

Boyfriend By Christmas is the kind of easy going, feel-good read I’ll be recommending to my friends over the holidays and would be a great addition to anyone’s Christmas read list. 

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