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Holiday Spirit by John DeGuire - Review (ARC)


I received an ARC from Reedsy Discovery in exchange for an honest review.

Holiday Spirit
by John DeGuire is a fun holiday romp that combines genres in some unexpected ways. The novel follows some classic horror characters from Count Dracula, Frankenstein, the Invisible Man, the Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Phantom of the Opera, along with mummies, werewolves, witches, and the like throughout this Christmas tale. The witch and her associates are trying to get rid of Christmas and other beloved holidays while Dracula, his werewolf wife, and company are attempting to save the holidays.

I don't often read holiday themed novels, but genre and monster mashups can be a lot of fun when done right. John DeGuire does a great job working with the classic characters. The classic characters are still recognizable and feel like themselves while getting a modern update. He also makes some really creative calls when it's time for the characters to interact with one another, especially classics that haven't interacted before in past mashups. Honestly, there's a bit of something for everyone in this book.

I only have one real issue with this story. It clocks in at 386 pages, but it could easily be tightened up and streamlined to somewhere around the 300 page mark. As much as I loved where this story started, around the mid-point I was starting to flag and lose some interest. The novelty of the whole thing was starting to wear off a bit. Things picked back up in time for the ending, but I would have preferred this to be much shorter.

While Holiday Spirit by John DeGuire isn't quite a favorite read, I still had a good time trying this author's debut. As much as I enjoyed the story in this format, I bet it would make a cool movie as long as it had the right cast. If you are a fan of the classic Universal horror movies, The Sandman, or The Nightmare Before Christmas, you may also like this as well.

My review is also on Reedsy Discovery and Goodreads.


  1. I don't really read holiday themed books either, but this sounds like fun. Although I agree, the page count seems high and I haven't even read the book!


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