Published: November 13th, 2012
Publisher: Delacourt Books for Young Readers
Copy: Publisher and Netgalley
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.
Meant to Be was one of those books where the journey was more important than the ending. I mean, let's face it, the title gives it all away, doesn't it? It reads like a bit of a comedy of errors, but let me assure you it was a fun ride. There aren't many surprises - Julie is hard working, smart and a rule follower. Jason is smart, a cheeky flirt and a definite rule breaker. And of course they are paired up as buddies on the school trip and the sparks start to fly.
One of my favourite things about the story was the setting. I grew up in England and spent many Saturdays wandering the streets of London, so I was able to really identify with the area and the background although in my memory it wasn't quite as quick to get around as they made it seem. It's rather cute how obviously out of his depth Jason is and how patently clueless Julie is - she is so focused on Mark and her conviction that the grass is greener on his side that she just doesn't get what she's missing.
Ms Morril\s writing is engaging and funny and it was easy to root for our two protagonists right from the start. A quick fun read that will make you smile.