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Book #43 – Ex-mas (final thoughts)

November 25, 2009

Christmas break hasn’t got off to a great start for 17-year-old Lila Beckwith. First, she’s handed a last-minute assignment on global warming, then her parents force her to cancel her Party Of The Year Christmas party (while also grounding her before they leave town), and to top it off her 8-year-old brother and his best friend take off to save Santa from the melting ice caps, of all things. Since her parents would freak if they found out their precious boy disappeared on Lila’s watch, she sets off to find them. And who’s along for the ride to track down the adventurers? Beau, the ex. Is this Christmas break destined not only to be a failure, but to ruin the social standing Lila’s worked so hard to attain?

Last week I was in a bit of a reading slump, coming off of two books that just didn’t work for me, one of which I haven’t finished yet. What I needed was something fun and quick. Did Kate Brian’s Ex-mas ever fit the bill! It’s not a deep, complex story, but Brian’s writing makes it entertaining and fun.

It’s obvious from the get-go that being thrown together for this spontaneous trip isn’t Lila or Beau’s idea of a good time. Although they’re only in High School, they’ve already managed to create quite a history together, and their rocky relationship feels believable. Most of the book takes place in a car, which could easily become boring, but Brian does a great job of keeping the story going, both through Lila and Beau’s conversation and Lila’s memories of how things used to be.

The only thing that irked me was the overabundance of pop culture references. They work for the story, but it’s not going to take too many years (months?) for the book to feel dated. And Lila saying that A Knight’s Tale was one of her favourite “old-school” movies made me feel old. Um, yeah…

I definitely recommend this book for 2009 holiday reading, especially if you need a break from some heavier reading.

My rating: 7.5/10

Holiday Reading Challenge: 1/2

Soundtrack Saturday

9 Comments leave one →
  1. November 25, 2009 6:55 pm

    This sounds fun. I’ve been wanting to read this one for a while now. Great review.


    P.S. – And A Knight’s Tale is definitely not old school. gosh.

  2. November 26, 2009 6:46 am

    haha, I agree that A Knight’s Tale is not “old school”. I could definitely use a quick read and I think this might be a good one thanks to your review.

  3. November 26, 2009 12:09 pm

    This sounds like a nice, fun book. I have it on my list too for the challenge, I can’t wait to get to it. Nice review! :)

  4. November 26, 2009 5:39 pm

    Sounds like a cute story and the cover is so cute!

  5. November 27, 2009 9:47 am

    Sounds like a fun book! I’ll have to add it to my holiday reading list for next year since this year’s is already full!
    By the way, thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment on Christmas Jars.

  6. November 27, 2009 9:04 pm

    This would be a good rad for the holiday reading challenge I am in! :)

  7. November 28, 2009 11:44 am

    This sounds like a book right up my alley this holiday season!

    Also, I have an award for you over here! :)

  8. stacybuckeye permalink
    November 29, 2009 4:24 pm

    Hee Hee. A Knight’s Tale as old school. Love it (when I’m not shaking with old lady sobs).
    This does seem like good Christmas fun and I love candycanes :)


  1. Looking Back, Moving Forward « alita.reads.

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