All I Want for Christmas

Maggie Knox

Quick Synopsis

A holiday romance about two oil-and-water reality-star country singers who must fake a relationship in order to win the opportunity of a lifetime.

Publisher’s Synopsis

Will they hit the right notes this holiday season?

When Sadie and Max are selected as contestants on the famed reality singing show Starmaker, each thinks they’ve finally gotten their big Nashville break. But then they’re paired up for duet week and stun the world with their romantic onstage chemistry. With fans going wild for #Saxie the network demands that they remain a duo on and offstage, or exit the competition. Faking a relationship until their final performance in the Starmaker holiday special shouldn’t be too hard, except for one small problem—Sadie and Max can’t stand each other. 

But with their dreams just within reach, they agree to the ruse. Will their fake relationship be exposed before they can win? Or might their phony connection turn real by the Christmas finale?

Book Review

I liked Maggie Knox’s debut novel, The Holiday Swap, as a writing duo, although I did not love it. I thought I would give the authors another shot and read their newest book.

All I Want for Christmas is an enemies-to-lovers holiday romance set amid a reality television show competition for country singers. Despite reading 30 percent of this book, I can not tell you anything more about the story.

I rarely do not finish a book, especially one that was gifted to me. But I have been relying on holiday books to get me in the Christmas spirit this year. After some spending time on this one, I knew that All I Want for Christmas was not going to fit the bill.

The plot of All I Want for Christmas seems straightforward enough. However, I found that there was little plot outside of the reality show competition, which was not all that exciting. There was not even a solid establishment of the two main characters as enemies outside of the fact that they were both competitors vying for the same prize. Other than some interactions between a few characters, the story lacks details that would help create tension and excitement. But I ultimately felt like little actually happened to move the book along or hold my interest.

I do not necessarily dislike books light on the plot so long as they have strong character development. However, I found this novel also fell short on that front. Outside of their status as country singers and a minimal amount of details about their background, I did not know much about the characters. I was not rooting for either to win since there was not enough details about the competition or a fully formed character in which to be invested. Without feeling like I knew the characters or understood their motives, I was left with nothing pulling me into the story.

On top of that, there was almost no Christmas to be found in All I Want for Christmas. There are a few mentions of Christmas and singing Christmas songs. However, the holiday season is really treated as a setting and little else. So if you are looking for holiday cheer, activities, and spirit, you will not find it in this book.

For me, All I Want for Christmas was lacking all the key elements of a good story. I felt like I was thrown into the middle of a book and missed all the context and set-up. But I assure you that I started this book on page one. I found that All I Want for Christmas felt more like an unfinished idea than a book with full-formed details and characters. Ultimately, I could not constitute finishing All I Want for Christmas. I would recommend skipping this one.


Overall Rating

Rating: 1.5 out of 5.


Rating: 2 out of 5.


Rating: 2 out of 5.

Character Development

Rating: 1 out of 5.

All I Want for Christmas



Publication Date
October 4, 2022


Storygraph Rating
3.19 stars

Goodreads Rating
3.25 stars

Buy Now

Note: I received an e-galley of this book from its publisher, G.P. Putnam’s Sons. Regardless, I always provide a fair and honest review.

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