I received a free review copy of Merry and Bright, an anthology of six Christmas themed short stories by six different authors and edited by Lucie Simone.
Sip your eggnog, linger under the mistletoe, and make a Christmas wish. Merry & Bright brings you six tales of Christmas cheer, featuring stories of budding romances, Southern charm, lost loves, heaps of humor, and lots of pie by authors Isabella Louise Anderson, Cindy Arora, Laura Chapman, Lauren Clark, Libby Mercer, and Nancy Scrofano. From sunny Los Angeles to the Rocky Mountains to the Deep South, Merry & Bright will take you on a heartwarming adventure you’ll love to visit again and again. Wrap yourself in holiday mirth and prepare to be swept off your feet.
I don’t read short stories often because I tend to like longer stories (novel length or at least novella) that I can get my teeth into and really enjoy the characters. Short stories often feel rushed to me or at least tend to really leave me wanting more – and not in a good way. But I didn’t find that with Merry and Bright. I enjoyed the stories and having something to read in short bursts. Like read a story for half an hour or so and then go and maybe do the laundry or other boring stuff and then read another one for a bit. I’ve been busy lately and putting off reading until I have time to read for a long time (meaning I’ve not been reading much). I didn’t feel like I needed to do that with Merry and Bright I just read a small chunk (pretty much 1 story at a time) and then got on with my day. So I’ve been reconsidering my opinion of short stories and I may well read more anthologies of them in the future. Once I do something about the ridiculous to be read mountain in my flat.
Each of the stories was very different and made me think and feel different things about the characters. Without wanting to give spoilers, I think the very first story in Merry and Bright was my favourite. It certainly had the perfect ending and although I really wanted to know what happened next for the characters I didn’t feel short changed or as though I’d been rushed through a story and had missed anything.
This was a fun read and it got me in the mood for Christmas. I’m glad I put my assumptions about short stories aside and read it.
But as an aside I must say – everytime I see that synopsis with it’s mention of eggnog I can’t help but shudder at the very idea of it. I just don’t get the appeal of that at all. I don’t even know if you can get it here but I wouldn’t want to try it if you could. It sounds grim.