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on October 30, 2011
After this past year, I am more firmly convinced that James Patterson is actually dead,and someone with greed but no taste decided his last few cookie-cutter collaborations did not deserve a decent burial along with the 'ghost writer,'Patterson."The Christmas Wedding" is, by far, the worst desecration. We are expected to believe that three men will stand at an altar, and have the bride choose one of them in front of a roomful of people! These men obviously don't share a pair between them! Our heroine, Gaby, is a shallow creature who deserves to be sucker punched by as many guests as possible as she walks down the aisle. If I write anymore, I'll give something away, and I wouldn't want to do that to any lost soul who does not think life is too short to waste on this yuletide suffering (I mean offering)! In closing, here's my holiday wish for you, fellow reader... save your hard-earned money, and treat yourself to a peppermint latte and a bag of Christmas cookies!
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on October 17, 2011
Gaby Summerhill's family hasn't been together for Christmas since her husband Peter died, but that's about to change. You see Gaby has been proposed to by three men, and the thing is she is going to have a Christmas wedding, and she isn't going to to disclose who the groom will be until the wedding.So the only way her children, Emily, Claire Lizzie and Seth will know who she is marrying is to come home for Christmas.
I loved getting to know Gaby's children. Each of them were dealing with their own issues making this an interesting story. One was having marital troubles, one had a husband fighting cancer, another is a very successful lawyer who is married but puts in way to much time at her job, and finally one is trying to get a book published. Each child's story would have made for an interesting book in itself but roll them together and it made the plot of this book move along nonstop. I loved the plan Gaby came up with to get her children home, an idea that was totally new, hooking me, making me wonder myself who she would marry. There was even a twist thrown in that actually surprised me.
Overall if you enjoy family stories where the family seems as real as a your next door neighbors, and want to feel a bit of the magic of the holiday season then your going to want to pick this book up. Normally when I think of James Patterson I think of action packed thrillers, but he can certainly pull of a nice Christmas time family story as well. Highly recommended!
*A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review.*
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on November 26, 2011
Once upon a time, I adored James Patterson's writing. I couldn't get enough of his books from about ten years ago and prior, but as the years have gone by and he has started pumping out a book or two every couple months, the quality of his stories has really plummeted. Most of Patterson's books these days are collaborations, so I am not sure how much he actually writes and how much is just his name printed prominently on the cover to boost sales. Regardless, his older novels are excellent and his more recent books are usually still not too shabby. They are at the very least, usually quick, easy, entertaining reading. This is not true of Christmas Wedding, which is in fact the worst James Patterson novel I have ever read by far. Honestly, Christmas Wedding is the worst book I have read in a very long time, and I am not opposed to a sappy Christmas story now and then. Christmas Wedding is slow and boring from cover to cover. I kept waiting for an amazing plot twist to pull it all together and make it a worthwhile read, but it never came. The description of the book from the book jacket reads, " . . . But the wedding isn't Gaby's only surprise--she has one more gift for her children, and it could change all their lives forever." After reading this book, I have no idea what this other gift/surprise for her children is. I didn't choose this book expecting it to be action packed, but I did expect it to have more to it than it did. The line above from the book's own description, gave me the impression that there would something to the story that wasn't already mentioned on the book jacket. I was hoping for something on the level of "Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas" or a charmingly magical plot twist like the ones Nicolas Sparks does so well. Christmas Wedding has no twists and is neither interesting nor charming. Don't waste your time reading this book. You will be disappointed.
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on November 8, 2011
Gee, I wished I hadn't bought this, what a waste of time and money reading it. It was a chore to finish reading it, hoping it might actually get interesting. I wish I would have read more of the Amazon reader reviews for it. I should have waited until it shows up in the Dollar Store shelves for a buck probably by Spring. I gave it one star because the cover was pretty.
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on October 20, 2011
This has to be his worst one yet. No,his sci fi one, Toys, was terrible. I like his mysteries and he needs to stick to those. The plot was silly. Who plans a wedding but even the groom doesn't know until the actual ceremony. The whole family has problems. It was so disappointing. He has no skill writing about feelings and real life situations and emotions. Give it up and go back to mysteries. I'm glad it was a library book and I didn't waste my money on it.
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on December 8, 2011
The description of the book from its jacket reads, " . . . But the wedding isn't Gaby's only surprise--she has one more gift for her children, and it could change all their lives forever."

And --- What could that be? There was no twist at the end of this awful book to provide an answer. Zilch. I was left appalled at such a product produced seemingly under James Patterson's name. The plot -- entirely unrealistic -- she decides at the altar whom she is willing to marry? While the 3 "candidates" so patiently stand and wait? Please give a break to all of us out here who still believe we have some brains.

Years ago I stopped buying JP's books and borrowed only from the library. But no other book has made me so glad I did. I wish you gave the option of zero stars.
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VINE VOICEon October 25, 2011
This would be best to be considered a short story instead of a full length novel.

This story is the typical feel good Hallmark Christmas Story. I enjoyed the story knowing that it was going to just be a feel good moment. Gaby is wanting her kids to come home for Christmas. It has been three years since her husband, their father passed away. They have not all been together since. But this year she has them coming because she has announced that she is getting married. But who is she going to marry? She isn't even sure yet.

Three different men have proposed to her and they just all happen to be friends. So, Gaby proclaims that she accepts and wants to get married on Christmas day. The catch, she won't announce who the groom is until the wedding.

That is the story line but how each person responds is the gist of the short story.

Again, I enjoyed the book. My only complaint, the price is that of a full length book, and this story is not that. The price is out of line with the product.
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on November 5, 2011
I have enjoyed every book with James Patterson's name on it - until this one.

The story: Numerous men have proposed to Gaby but she is not revealing to anyone - not even the men - which one she is going to marry until the wedding on Christmas day. She sends "teaser" videos to each of her grown children.

I tried to motivate myself to finish and got through more than 3/4 of the book and decided that I don't care who she marries. There is an elementary school quality about the writing and it might be really cute if it was written by an elementary school student - but it was written by an adult.

The other name [author] on this book is Richard DiLallo. Apparently this is his first novel. Perhaps he should find another line of work.
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on November 7, 2011
This is one of the worst books I have ever read. The plot was so silly that I kept holding out hop there was a big twist at the end to validate the reading time I had invested. But, alas, it was not to be. All that happened at the end was I knew I had wasted time and money on a very poor story.
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on December 23, 2012
FINALLY. I am finally done with this book that I have been attempting to finish since June. I have never been happier to finish a book. I will leave a longer review tomorrow because it was just too awful not to leave a review.

And now, 2 weeks later, I will actually attempt to finish the review. I may not be able to finish it because just thinking about it is causing me to feel rage. THIS DOES CONTAIN SPOILERS, but if someone accidentally reads the spoilers, they may thank me for sparing them from reading this train wreck of a book.

This book just should not have been written by a man. And if it was to be written by a woman, it would never have been written at all. It doesn't make any sense. He has absolutely no grasp on how a real woman, especially a mother, thinks or feels. I think the author wanted so badly for us to understand what a great woman Gaby is. Examples: Gaby makes a breakfast every morning for the homeless folk in town. She doesn't want to just be giving anything away, so she makes them pay, even if it is just a few cents. And then, on the day of her wedding, her children ask where she is going to serve breakfast since the barn they normally use is set up for the wedding, and ah! The perfect solution! She will let them have breakfast in her beautifully decorated barn using all the table settings for the wedding, won't they just love that? Uhh, I hardly doubt the homeless people are going to appreciate the fact that you have loads of money to decorate your barn for a wedding. Most of these people are down on their luck and probably aren't worried about how amazing your decorating skills are. That is just one example. Now on to the real plot.

Gaby thinks herself to be a very generous, loving, caring woman who is always bending over backward to help others. I, however, find her to be quite the selfish bitch. Hear me out. She decides that in order to do something for herself, she is going to get married to a wonderful man. No problem, right? Wrong. She picks 3 of her closest male friends, including her deceased husband's BROTHER, and decides to string these men and everyone else she knows until Christmas day, where all 3 men must show up and then she will reveal who she is marrying. I truly find it hard to believe that 3 men would be willing to go along with this. She also thinks she is really hip because she lets her children know about this plan by Fedexing them videos of herself. If she was that hip, she would have uploaded the videos to Youtube or uploaded them as email attachments. Also, she will not let her grandchildren call her Grandma. Get over yourself woman, you are a grown woman and having them call you by your first name does not make you any cooler or younger. Gaby has 4 children, Claire, Lizzie, Emily, and Seth. Claire, 35 years old,, is married to an abusive pothead, and they have 3 children together - 14 year old Gus and 11 year old twins. Lizzie, 34, is one of the only likeable characters and is married to the very ill Mike and they have an 8 year old daughter named Tallulah. Emily, 29, is the picture perfect child - she is a lawyer, would prefer to do pro bono work, and is married to a neurologist. Seth, 26, is a novelist who is dating Andie. Gaby catches Claire's son Gus with weed during one of the scenes and decides to keep it a secret, hoping he will decide to quit right then. Yes that is really a hip thing to do, especially knowing the boy's father's life path (still an abusive pothead at the age of 34.) Later on, on the day of the wedding, she sees Gus walking with 8 year old Tallulah outside into the woods. Gaby goes flying outside without her shoes on to chase them and catches them smoking weed - 14 is already too young , but really, an EIGHT YEAR OLD?? And STILL she doesn't tell anyone else. She even makes up excuses for her feet being all cut up. That is definitely beyond the definition of cool Grandma, that is called enabling a minor. Honestly, I can't even go on, I have already wasted too much time on this review so I will just get right to how it ended. She chooses Martin (the brother-in-law, ew, but hey at least she won't have to change her last name!), and the other 2 men are perfectly okay with it and agree to continue to be her best friend. Seth and Andie reveal that the reason they were late to dinner the other night was because they had stopped to get a marriage license. So they surprise everyone by stepping up to the alter to get married before Gaby. And Claire announces that she is leaving her abusive husband Hank. Oh yeah, and Mike has a miraculous recovery from his illness. So, you see, it is happily ever after for everyone. Whatever.
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