Meant To Be by Lauren Morrill

How did I get the book?
I bought it.

Genre: Contemporary

Synopsis: Meant to be or not meant to be… that is the question.
It’s one thing to fall head over heels into a puddle of hazelnut coffee, and quite another to fall for the—gasp—wrong guy. Straight-A junior Julia may be accident prone, but she’s queen of following rules and being prepared. That’s why she keeps a pencil sharpener in her purse and a pocket Shakespeare in her, well, pocket. And that’s also why she’s chosen Mark Bixford, her childhood crush, as her MTB (“meant to be”).
But this spring break, Julia’s rules are about to get defenestrated (SAT word: to be thrown from a window) when she’s partnered with her personal nemesis, class-clown Jason, on a school trip to London. After one wild party, Julia starts receiving romantic texts… from an unknown number! Jason promises to help discover the identity of her mysterious new suitor if she agrees to break a few rules along the way. And thus begins a wild goose chase through London, leading Julia closer and closer to the biggest surprise of all: true love.
Because sometimes the things you least expect are the most meant to be.

200words (or less) review: I’d been eyeing Meant To Be for a couple of months before I bought it. In the past year I’ve developed a soft spot for happy romantic contemporary stories and this book promised to tick all the boxes.

Meant To Be and me were not MTB (pun intended) – we just didn’t mesh. Part of it was that I didn’t recognise the London in this book, I’m sure all the locations where factual but the character of the city or the people didn’t ring true for me. On top of that Julia and Jason’s romance felt like a checklist of Hollywood Romantic Comedy moments.

I didn’t believe Julia and Jason’s story and while Jason had his moments I never did grow to care for Julia. She’s really judgemental and there isn’t enough outside of that to balance her out. The rest of the characters don’t really get a look which is a shame. I’m wondering if a better understanding of Julia’s classmates would have changed my opinion of her.

I have no complaints about the writing and maybe if the setting had been in another country I would have enjoyed it more.

Recommend it?

Not sure

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