I’m Dreaming of a Wyatt Christmas

Abrams/Amulet. Oct. 2021. 336p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781419754012.
Gr 8 Up–Noelle lives for Christmas. Since her mother’s death, she and her father have always made a point of making her favorite holiday extra special. But this year is different; her dad barely notices her, and when he nearly misses all of her Nutcracker performances, Noelle decides to accept a babysitting job that will take her to Vermont for the entirety of winter break. Incredibly, instead of insisting she stay home, her father enthusiastically agrees to this plan. Noelle heads out to spend Christmas on the ski slopes, away from all of her favorite traditions. When the dreamy older half-brother of her babysitting charges shows up at the family ski cabin, though, will all of Noelle’s dancing fantasies come true, or is she in over her head? This is exactly what readers want in a holiday romance—light and fun, with just enough drama to keep things interesting but not feel overwhelming. While the family Noelle babysits for seems too perfect at the outset, all of the characters are nuanced and well-rounded. Noelle’s sweet relationships with each of the children really shine, and the different family dynamics will resonate with teens. Overall, though, this is a fun, snowy retreat of a book. The fact that it gracefully tackles fears of fitting in with one’s family and of the future is an added bonus.
VERDICT Recommended for all collections.

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