Usually, I don’t love anthologies but guys, I found the perfect one for Halloween*! I’m also going to be ranking the stories at the end in case you’re wondering which ones are my favorite. In case you’re missing the vibes I’m putting out, I really want it to be October right now.
*i say i “found ” it like i actually Christopher columbused my way into a rare netgalley find minus the colonialism 💀
🎃 Halloween Party
🧹 Witchy Potions
👩❤👨 True Love
A huge thank you to the publisher for an e-arc in exchange for an honest review!
TL;DR: An anthology of three stories involving best friends finding their true loves with the help of a little magic. Age Rating: 13 and up.
Three Kisses, One Midnight is so much fun. At first, I wasn’t entirely sure how I would feel about it, because anthologies and I…we fight like cats sometimes. But I can say without a shadow of a doubt that this story will absolutely sweep you away with its Halloween spirit and swoon-worthy romance!
first of all…THE DIVERSITY????
First of all, I love how you can tell which author wrote which story. We follow three best friends who each have a love potion that helps spark feelings that might already exist in their true loves. The catch? They have to be kissed by midnight after taking the love potion!
Onny is Filipino, Ash is Taiwanese, and True is Indian. I adored the Asian representation in these stories partially because I think that each author sprinkled in tidbits unique to their own cultures and experiences. It made it feel so much more special.
now let’s talk about individual stories!
First off, Apollonia “Onny” Diamante. I don’t know why everyone in this book has such romantical, whimsical names but besides Onny we have Byron Frost, Asher Lee, Aria “True” Tandon, and Orion. There’s also a Cassidy but that’s a little less whimsical in my mind*. Onny’s story has that rivals-to-lovers trope that I adore so very much. Most of the plot involves her hurrying to collect ingredients for the boy she believes to be her forever true love Alexander after her nemesis Byron Frost drinks the original potion. Also, the QUEEN Roshani Chokshi wrote this story and her prose literally never fails me. Ever.
*my most sincerest apologies to all Cassidys out there. in my defense, my name is kaya. you can’t get less whimsical than that
“Perhaps there really were blue-lipped ghosts resting in the shadows of forests, girls with autumn leaves for hair slipping behind buildings, or scarecrows waltzing across fields. It was the kind of magic that promised alchemy and wonder, where a kiss by midnight really could melt into true love…”
LIKE WHAT IS THAT. My Kindle was crying for me to stop highlighting every sentence like it always does when I read a story by Chokshi. Anyways, Onny’s belief in magic and her banter with the woefully dark and brooding Byron Frost made my day. So good. Okay okay, one more quote about Byron Frost and then I’ll leave it alone.
“Byron’s hair was so dark that it looked like a rare ink coveted by the same poet who’d given him his name.”
Asher Lee’s story was written by Evelyn Skye, and it’s been so long since I’ve read anything by her! I really enjoyed her Crown’s Game duology but never got around to picking up her other books until now.
Ash’s story was the absolute most wholesome thing I’ve read all year. He’s an artist who has been in love with his neighbor Cassidy for years, and yet they’ve never spoken. At least, not until she comes crashing through his fence on Halloween thanks to some rambunctious younger brothers and a chaotic basketball hoop. Both Ash and Cassidy are so adorable, that you can’t help but grin the entire time. I also love the connections to Onny’s story previously!
Finally, True’s story was more focused on her refusal to believe in magic or true love, as she attends Onny’s party with the intent of never using her love potion…until she meets a mysterious, kind stranger named Orion.
This was my first time reading anything by Sandhya Menon but I really enjoyed her writing style! True is a girl who’s had her heart broken before, and watching her slowly open up to Orion was adorable. Also, I appreciated some much-needed revenge on her stupid (a very eloquent word) ex-boyfriend. And I probably loved a certain magical element that appeared in all three stories the most in this one.
my final ranking, from least favorite to most favorite!
3. True’s story is my least favorite, although I still really enjoyed it! It’s the sort of story that would work better as a full novel, since there wasn’t any history between the main love interests.
2. Ash’s story is unbelievably cute, and the absolute epitome of next-door romance. I loved his love for art, and how he and Cassidy just clicked.
- Onny’s story struck me the most as wildly romantic and magical, with just the right mixture of angst and sweetness. I was swept away for a few glorious pages into a love story borne on Halloween night, underneath the gleam of the moon and the fabled constellations. I absolutely adored it.
Three Kisses, One Midnight is the perfect collection of witchy love stories to beckon in the autumn season! They all made me laugh and smile and occasionally tear up. This comes out on August 30th, so be sure to order a copy, add it to Goodreads, and add it to Storygraph! Tell me: what’s a book that reads like a fairytale?
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