Hope you’re all well and are keeping safe! I know Christmas was several weeks ago, but I thought I’d share my The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily book review today. It may be a Christmas book, but that doesn’t mean you can only read The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily in December – I mean, it has been snowing in many parts of the UK recently! It’s a sweet YA novel that makes a great follow-up to Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, and is the type of book you can read over and over again. Read on for my full review.
Dash and Lily have had a tough year since they first fell in love among the shelves of their favorite bookstore. Lily’s beloved grandfather suffered a heart attack, and his difficult road to recovery has taken a major toll on her typically sunny disposition.
With only twelve days left until Christmas—Lily’s favorite time of the year—Dash, Lily’s brother Langston, and their closest friends must take Manhattan by storm to help Lily recapture the unique holiday magic of a glittering, snow-covered New York City in December.
After devouring Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares just before Christmas, I was left eager for more, and at the end of December I sat down to read the sequel. I loved everything about Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares: the characters, the setting (New York), the Christmas theme, and the whole concept of the protagonists meeting through a red notebook left in a bookshop. I had to immediately order The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily as I couldn’t bear to leave Dash and Lily and not find out what happened next.
The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily is set almost a year after the first book. It starts with Dash arranging to meet with Lily’s older brother Langston, which is surprising as they don’t really get on. After being informed that Lily has yet to buy a Christmas tree – completely unlike her – Dash sets out on a mission to try to rekindle Lily’s love for the festive season. And so begins Dash’s mission to put the smile back on Lily’s face…
Much like with Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, the chapters in The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily alternate between Dash and Lily. Although Lily exhibits a lot of the cynicism previously associated with Dash, their voices are very distinct and their personalities still shine through. Dash is kind and wants to help Lily, and uses complicated words that reflect his bookish nature. While Lily came out of her shell in Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, she seems to retreat back into it in The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily. She has become more pessimistic and less cheerful, seemingly going through a bit of a crisis. Feeling “lost and confused”, Lily ends up disappearing for a while, sending both her family and Dash into panic mode. Thankfully, Dash manages to find Lily, but it doesn’t seem that Lily is too pleased as she says that they should break up. But luckily it’s all just a bit of a misunderstanding, and Dash and Lily realise that they are better together than apart.
In The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily, we once again meet some of the secondary characters from the previous book, for example Dash’s ex girlfriend Sofia. She has moved back to New York after spending some time in Barcelona, and is now dating Dash’s best friend Boomer. Lily starts handing out with Edgar, but it doesn’t develop into anything romantic. Lily’s grandpa and Mrs Basil E. also make an appearance in this book, along with both sets of parents and Langston and his boyfriend Benny, and there is a reference to the red notebook towards the end.
The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily is the kind of book you can read if you’ve got a few hours to spare. It’s very short, with only 233 pages, and the chapters are brief. The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily is best enjoyed snuggled under a warm blanket with a mug of hot chocolate. It may be more melancholy than its predecessor, but it’s a cosy read full of references to Christmassy things, such as jumpers, gingerbread latte, the Nutcracker, ice skating and Lebkuchen cookies. Like Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, I was left wanting more after I finished The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily. Dash and Lily have such an adorable relationship and I hope they spend more time together in Mind the Gap, Dash & Lily.
Have you read any of the books in the Dash & Lily or seen the Netflix series? Since I first wrote this review, I’ve completed the Dash & Lily series – and I loved Mind the Gap, Dash & Lily just as much as the previous two books. I’ll be posting a review sometime soon so keep an eye out!