Book Review | The Christmas Lights | By Karen Swan
Narrative and Plot
The Christmas Lights is the kind of book that you pick when you need the overall holiday vibe in your book but has much meatier content than what you find in a holiday book. The narrative lends itself to building the mystery around two different timelines. One in the present, and the other set in the past. As the story progresses, the past and the present blend in creating a history repeats itself kind of atmosphere.
The plot is intricately woven so as to keep you in and out of the mystery at the same time. If you look closely, you as a reader can figure out the mystery and feel smart about it or you could choose to ignore the little easter eggs and follow till the end and figure out the suspense with the main characters.
Characters and Conflicts
All the characters in the book were layered and nuanced. While Zac had his charm and influencer persona on the surface, at times he managed to surprise you with his insights. Bo, being the central character was conflicted by her choices and yet she couldn’t pinpoint where it all went wrong. This uncertainty in the main character makes her much more relatable despite her being in this absurd situation.
Anders with his caring demeanour and hard exterior makes up for a brooding hero. But the story reveals there is much more to him than that.
Signy both in the past and present was a force of nature.
Also worth mentioning is the social media influencer life that was portrayed in the book. It gives you insight into the carefully curated picture which isn’t always that perfect.
The one quip, I have with the plot is that it could have spent a little bit more time between the main characters in order to develop the romance. This felt abrupt given the short amount of time they had spent together.
Overall, The Christmas Lights is an atmospheric holiday read that you can curl up with if you’re into a little bit of mystery and suspense.