Mistletoe And Mr. Right by Lyla Payne | Novella Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Mistletoe And Mr. Right by Lyla Payne | Novella ReviewMistletoe and Mr. Right by Lyla Payne
Published by Bloomsbury Publishing USA on November 20th 2014
Genres: Christmas & Advent, Contemporary, Europe, Fiction, Holidays, Ireland, Love & Romance, New Adult, Religion, Romance, Romantic Comedy, Travel, Young Adult
Pages: 150
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring...but lust refused to settle in for a long winter's nap. She might be all nestled, snug in her bed, by why, oh why, do visions of the wrong guy dance in her head? Jessica, (not Jessie), figures that nothing could be better than a trip to the Emerald Isle for Christmas break. So she takes a flying leap and follows her boyfriend home for the holidays, not only sure that he will finally agree they're destined for each other, but also that Ireland will provide the perfect backdrop to the beginning of their happily-ever-after. But it turns out his family--and his gorgeous ex-girlfriend--don't feel the same way, and even the family goat seems to be conspiring against her well-laid plans. The only person making the trip worthwhile is the very last one she should be thinking about, but Grady, the local farmhand, has a way of showing up when Jessica needs him most...and least.USA Today bestselling author Lyla Payne wraps up the perfect holiday novella, ties it with a ribbon of romance, and tops it with a light dusting of snow. Perfect to curl up with under the tree. Just add hot cocoa!

Sometimes what you think would make a great Christmas surprise for someone actually is kind of a not very smart life choice — and that’s essentially the plot in Mistletoe And Mr. Right by Lyla Payne. FYI, it feels weird that when you read this it will be snowing and blustery and cold whereas, I am writing this in the middle of April and it was warm enough to walk without a jacket today. I decided to read this novella because it was the shortest item in my Netgalley queue and honestly, reading it now and scheduling the most makes doing 25 days of Christmas themed books way easier. AND! This novella was such a quick and unexpected read.

Jessica flies out to Ireland to surprise her boyfriend of four months, Brennan. As she’s driving from the airport to his parent’s inn, she accidentally hits a goat with the car and crosses paths with a photographer/farmhand named Grady. There’s some sparks, but Jessica shrugs it off as Brennan is part of her ten year plan. So, anyways, Jessica gets to Brennan’s house and rather than his family being pumped to finally meet his American girlfriend, they are dumbfounded. Brennan is shocked too. At first, I was like this girl is obviously off her rocker and a total weirdo. However about 50% in, I realized why Jessica is the way that she is. She’s suffered some trauma due to food insecurity and poverty, so she has her future planned out so that she will never go hungry again. Also? She’s in Ireland because Brennan isn’t moving fast enough for her and she wants to know if he’s the one.

So, the romance in Mistletoe And Mr. Right is kind of interesting. There’s no sparks between Brennan and Jessica. Not the way that there is between her and Grady. Oh sure, there’s kissing and all. However, there’s a rival for his affections — in the form of his gorgeous high school sweetheart – Katie. Alas, Jessica is conflicted. Brennan has qualities she has always wanted, like a family. BUT, he’s very easy going and not a planner like she is. Anyways, I liked how the romance resolves itself, even if it is a touch melodramatic.

I feel a bit bad giving this book 3.5 stars, however, I just didn’t have a good feel for Jessica until way late in the book. I never really connected or gelled with her until the very end. I thought that her actions were a bit abnormal – like, she’s in college and I think she’s 20, why on earth is she thinking about marriage with this kid that she has only been with for four months. That’s bizarre. Granted, we find out the reason, but I felt like it took a little too long to get to that whole reason point.

On A Scale Of One To Clark Griswold, How Much Christmas Spirit Does This Book Have?

Well, there’s a grumpy elderly person. There’s presents. There’s horses and a sleigh. There’s snow. I think that we are almost to the Clark Griswold point of Christmas spirit, but it’s at the point in the movie when all of the parents come over and he’s not super excited. That’s how much spirit this novella has.

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April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.

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About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Oh my gosh, I really think the cover for this is awful. I mean, whoa. I think I would have a difficult time with Jessica too. Thanks for the review.

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