Meant to Be

( 33 )

Overview

Funny? Romantic? Smart? Set in England? Cute guys? Yes x5!
In Lauren Morrill's sweet and witty debut, 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 ...

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Meant to Be

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Overview

Funny? Romantic? Smart? Set in England? Cute guys? Yes x5!
In Lauren Morrill's sweet and witty debut, 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.

"If you're into swoony romances with a little bit of history thrown in, you'll love Meant to Be."—HelloGiggles.com

"Fun, fresh and irresistibly romantic. STB (SURE to be) loved!"—Sarah Mlynowski

"Readers of Jennifer E. Smith and Stephanie Perkins will revel in this debate about love ruled by the stars or as a matter of the heart."—Shelf Awareness

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
High school junior Julia Lichtenstein is headed to London for her literature class’s spring break trip. But without her best friend or swim teammates there, she has to fend for herself when she’s partnered up with Jason Lippincott, who is as abrasive and free-spirited as Julia is uptight and studious. While Julia wants to visit museums, Jason is only interested in letting loose; he drags Julia to a house party, where she meets a cute boy, Chris. Jason offers to help Julia woo him, if Julia writes his papers during the trip, and romantic shenanigans ensue. Morrill’s debut, a Paper Lantern Lit property, is entertaining and quick-witted, but as a romance it’s forced. Although Julia has a crush at home in addition to Chris in London, both boys are all but invisible—no reader will expect Julia to end up with anyone but Jason. Those who share Julia’s passion for Shakespeare will appreciate the Benedick and Beatrice–style sparring between the two teens, but it doesn’t make up for the transparency of this opposites-attract romantic comedy. Ages 12–up. Agent: Steven Barbara, Foundry Literary + Media. (Nov.)
Kirkus Reviews
A paint-by-numbers romantic comedy of errors. Ultraorganized, rule-following scholar/swimmer Julia's dreams of a perfect English-lit class trip to London are dashed when she is assigned to uber-immature slacker Jason as buddy for the entire time. Jason couldn't possibly be any further from Mark, Julia's Meant To Be back home, in looks, brains or character. Surprise, surprise: Numerous pratfalls, fights, mix-ups and unexpectedly revelatory conversations, and one awesome kiss later, it turns out that if not her, then at least the plot's, MTB is, gasp, Jason. Julie's heart follows a well-trodden path that only readers who have never encountered the genre before will find at all astonishing. What those who do know the formula will find striking is the doggedness with which sweet-at-heart Jason pursues bitchy Julia. Morrill drops plenty of clues for discerning readers that indicate Jason's basic decency and attraction to Julia. Julia, meanwhile, ignores all of them and maintains such an unbending attitude of intellectual superiority that she becomes profoundly unlikable, despite many narrative attempts to mitigate this with episodes of clumsiness and cluelessness. The author has a good ear for comic dialogue--"I'm just saying there are other fish in the sea, Julia," her best friend counsels via Skype. "Big fish. Tasty fish. Tuna fish!"--that bodes well for future, less formulaic outings. Physical comedy, particularly as presented in Julia's present-tense voice, is far less successful. For neophytes only. (Comic romance. 13-17)
From the Publisher
HelloGiggles.com, November 24, 2012:
"If you’re into swoony romances with a little bit of history thrown in, you’ll love Meant to Be. I love this book because it’s funny, it has a super-relatable heroine, and it features a ton of romantic tension...Lauren Morrill rules and this book is awesome."

Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2012:
"The author has a good ear for comic dialogue."

Publishers Weekly, October 22, 2012:
"Morrill’s debut is entertaining and quick-witted."

Booklist, November 1, 2012:
"The traveling details are part of the fun: her friends are into shopping, not Shakespeare, and there are raucous puns about Big Ben. The contemporary scene with consumer name-dropping will grab readers...The core drama is the romance, with all its turnarounds and timeless realism."

School Library Journal, January 2013:
"This delightful debut explores the excitement and insecurities of an unexpected first love...A great choice for teens who enjoyed Jennifer E. Smith’s The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, Gabrielle Zevin’s Elsewhere, or Rachel Cohn and David Levithan’s Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares.

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—This delightful debut explores the excitement and insecurities of an unexpected first love. During the junior-year lit class trip to London, Julia, a rule-following, socially awkward swimmer/scholar, finds herself partnered with Jason, the obnoxious class clown. Her mission is to enjoy the historical sights while retracing her parents' honeymoon travels. He has plans to make the "Book Licker" break some rules and have fun. He drags her to a party, and after Julia has a few drinks, she exchanges numbers with a handsome British boy. Here is where the adventure begins. With a huge nod to Shakespeare, Jason agrees to help Julia compose love note texts and she agrees to write his cultural papers. The two form an alliance, and, although readers can see their feelings for each other grow, Julia believes her true "meant to be" love is her crush Mark, who happens to show up unexpectedly. Jealousy, some mixed messages, and a kiss that sends Julia spinning ensue. Even with the slightly contrived plotline, readers can't help but cheer for Jason as he opens up and wins Julia's heart. The good times they experience in London are a perfect balance to the painful secrets they reveal to each other, and girls will identify with Julia's angst when she believes she has been duped ("If I can go back to ignoring him, just like before this trip began, then I can forget"). A great choice for teens who enjoyed Jennifer E. Smith's The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (Little, Brown, 2012), Gabrielle Zevin's Elsewhere (Farrar, 2005), or Rachel Cohn and David Levithan's Dash & Lily's Book of Dares (Knopf, 2010).—Pamela Schembri, Newburgh Enlarged City Schools, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385741774
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 11/13/2012
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 543,401
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.78 (w) x 8.34 (h) x 1.02 (d)

Meet the Author

Lauren Morrill grew up in Maryville, Tennessee, where she was a short-term Girl Scout, a (not so) proud member of the marching band, and a trouble-making editor for the school newspaper. She graduated from Indiana University with a major in history and a minor in rock and roll and lives in Macon, Georgia, with her husband and their dog, Lucy. She is also the author of Being Sloane Jacobs. When she’s not writing, she spends a lot of hours on the track getting knocked around playing roller derby. Visit her at laurenmorrill.com and follow @laurenemorrill on Twitter.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 33 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(20)

4 Star

(8)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2013

    This was the best book I have ever read.  I recommend this book

    This was the best book I have ever read.  I recommend this book to all the teens who don't read alot that want to find a REALLY GOOD BOOK! I love this book soooooo much i haven't completed a book that wasn't school assigned in years.  I finished this book in 2 days and I was soooo sad. This is a must read!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 19, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    A school trip to London. How can things not be interesting? Mea

    A school trip to London. How can things not be interesting?

    Meant To Be consists of one of my favorite things which is shipping and OTPs. I have this serious issue where I ship anything
    and everything. In this book it's referred to as MTB as in meant to be. Julia happens to believe that Mark Bixford is her MTB, but her
    trip to London makes her doubt if Mark is her true MTB when she gets paired with Jason, her personal nemesis.

    Julia and Jason. They just have so much fun messing with each other that it was bound for them to get a bit "friendlier". There were
    many cute and awkward moments while they were paired to go on this trop together. I had a slight problem with them though. I liked
    them as characters separately, but I felt as though the two didn't connect well together.

    Even though I had trouble with Julia and Jason, I still enjoyed reading Meant To Be. It was a fun and light hearted read that was
    absolutely adorable.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 15, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Meant to Be is a hilarious rollercoaster ride! Lauren Morrill ha

    Meant to Be is a hilarious rollercoaster ride! Lauren Morrill had me crying tears of laugher with Julia and Jason's banter and romance. I loved Julia and Jason. Julia is a know-it-all, but she’s not a smart ass. She’s just a really smart girl that can’t hold her tongue when it comes to knowledge. Jason is the obnoxious ass who loves embarrassing her. Julia takes life very seriously, and Jason believes you should have some serious fun. Julia and Jason’s romance is a head-on collision of meant to be romance waiting to happen. Proof that opposites really can attract, if Julia can keep from killing Jason first.

    Julia’s junior class is on their way to London for their class trip, but she never would have guessed she would be assigned the class-clown jerk Jason as her buddy for the trip. Jason is the kind of guy Julia loves to hate, and she definitely stays away from. Jason is the guy who never misses an opportunity to be the class prankster. Just like the time Julia sits down in red paint, Jason fills her locker with tampons. Yeah, Jason is definitely not on Julia's list of guys she wants for her MTB (Meant to Be) fairy tale romance. So what irritating the heck out of Julia is when Jason becomes the guy she hates herself for falling in love with.

    Julia and Jason have the best bantering romance of all time. They are off the wall hilariously funny, and I laughed till my sides hurt with these two insane fun teenagers. I recommend Meant to Be as a fantastic cry your eyes out with laughter, heart- touching romance read!

    One of my favorite quotes from Meant to Be:

    “I don’t know, I’ve never been in love,” he says, pulling apart chunks of his remaining scone, “but I imagine it’ll be about her thinking it’s funny when I make a fool of myself and laughing at my dumb jokes and liking the same music.”

    “So you’re looking for someone just like you?”

    “Sure.” He shrugs. Then he grins widely. “But with boobs.”

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 27, 2012

    this book was everything I thought it would be; HILARIOUS! Julia

    this book was everything I thought it would be; HILARIOUS! Julia and Jason are the perfect characters for this book. Drama around every corner, that is quickly resolved with some fun in London:) Now quit readin' and BUY THE BOOK!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 24, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I really liked Julia, the main character of Meant to Be. She

    I really liked Julia, the main character of Meant to Be. She is the right blend of nerdy, smart and quirky. The backdrop of Meant to Be is London, and it was charming to read about, I could almost picture myself there with the descriptions on the pages of Julia's journey to learning about life, meant to be, and herself.
    I loved that she had her own interests and even though she was clutzy and insecure she had ideas off what she wanted and didn't want to be taken advantage of.
    I was so back and forth with Jason and that is a real talent to keep me so undecided and questioning a character. I really liked getting to know him and figuring out why he acts like he did and what his motivations are. He was so typical guy though. Transparent in so many ways, immature in others, absolutely sweet and melting in orders, and then there are the times where you scratch your head and think they must be from another planet.
    There were plenty of steamy moments but at times I felt like I had whip lash with the back and forth between Jason mark and Chris. I liked how they all played into the story though and what she learned about herself through interactions with each of them.
    The plot twist was interesting and added interesting to this fun yet sometimes emotional contemporary.
    Bottom line: Cute and funny story with good characters.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2013

    Sex Sex

    Kkdhhfh

    1 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 11, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Julia is a by-the-book kind of gal. She always does exactly what

    Julia is a by-the-book kind of gal. She always does exactly what’s expected of her, and nothing less (or more). She’s excited about this once in a lifetime trip to London; she can finally see the places she’s only read about. She’s bummed her bestie can’t make the trip with her, but hey, at least she’ll be in London. Once there, Julia is assigned as a ‘buddy’ to class clown Jason. At first, she’s upset she will have to babysit Jason, but it turns out he can be kind of fun. He convinces her to go with him to a party, where she drinks too much and ends up giving her number to any number of guys. When one of them starts to text-flirt her, she and Jason go on a mission to find the mystery guy.

    I’m going to be honest, Julia was a hard character to like. She was always correcting someone when they used the wrong word, or pronounced something the wrong way. She was kind of uppity and judgmental. But she could also be nice and was willing to try new things (when Jason could convince her). Jason was also not a clear winner, as far as personalities go. He was a bit of a douchecanoe to Julia (he called her Book Licker for most of the book), and he was kind of pushy and mean. But, he was also protective and funny and even had a sweet side. I did like the fact that they both kind of mellowed out as the book went on. They learned things about themselves and each other and really grew.

    There was no doubt where this book was heading (you can figure it out just be reading the book’s blurb, for pete’s sake), but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Once they got thrown together and started annoying each other and pushing each other’s buttons, it was quite amusing. There were several chuckle-out-loud moments; the two of them had lots of fun with verbal sparring. There were even a few swoon-worthy moments. The writing was fun and real, with a fast pace and no lagging. In fact, I’m surprised that this was Lauren’s first novel. There was also a bit of a twist near the end, so the journey for Julia and Jason wasn’t quite what you might expect.

    Beautiful cover. What more can I say?

    The sum up: Sweet, funny and romantic. Classic YA for the romance fan.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2015

    What???

    Alright

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  • Posted December 22, 2014

    4.5/ 5 stars First off, look at that cover! This cover is PERFE

    4.5/ 5 stars

    First off, look at that cover! This cover is PERFECT for this novel and I couldn't have asked for a better one; I feel that it captures the essence of the book, if that makes sense. Basically, I all sorts of love this cover.

    Good news, I don't just love the cover, I LOVE the book too! I read this book twice this week; I read it in one sitting but I wasn't over my OTP yet so I had to reread it. No regrets. Man, this book is filled with awesomeness, let me tell you; the writing is spot on, the characters are incredibly unique and well written, and the story is all sorts of wonderful. This is a romance but it was also... EDUCATIONAL. No lie, I'll get to that later. There were so many aspects throughout this book and instead of it being a jumbled mess, it was PURE AWESOMENESS.

    Meant to Be included probably my favorite plot line ever and no matter how many times I read/watch it, I never get tired of it; the two main characters hate each other but when forced together, they form not only an understanding but something more. With some swoons. Swoons are necessary. Oh, Lauren Morrill wrote it so good. The characters that Lauren came up with were WONDERFUL! Julia, our MC, is clumsy, awkward, rule-abiding, and incredibly stubborn. I'm sure that she was fun to write because she was crazy fun to read about. Jason is popular, loud, a slacker, and the center of attention. When paired together on a trip to London, arguments start a-flowing; it fueled a very interesting relationship that was at times whiplashy (not a word but still appropriate) but always wonderful and tension filled.

    Let's talk more about Jason. I can't get over him. New book boyfriend. HE'S A SEXY GINGER, FOLKS. I have a weakness for gingers and man, Jason hit the spot. He's also intelligent, cocky, adventurous, and funny. Basically, my type and I love him.

    Now, I'm not always the best at predicting what will happen and I was shocked at every turn; there is a lot of meat to this book and it made the 290 pages feel much longer. The twists kept me intrigued by the book and I couldn't be happier with it.

    I mentioned that it was educational earlier and it was cleverly so; Julia and Jason are in London with their class for credit and Julia is addicted to guidebooks. As we make our way with the characters around London, Julia talks about the history behind it all and I learned so much from this book. If you need to justify it, use that.

    Two words: swoony swoons.

    I can't wait to read Lauren's sophomore book and everything else that she writes!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2014

    This is one

    This is one

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2014

    I loved this book couldn't put it down....finished it in one day!

    I love how the story line is set in london and l loved how she falls for the wrong (in her book) but right (in my book) guy!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2014

    Best Book Ever!

    This is a must read for teens and I highly recommend this funny, awkward, coming of age story. I just reread it twice and COULD NOT put it down. I will not spoil it, but let's just say it has an unsuspected ending!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 25, 2013

    Ratings: 4 1/2 Stars I thought that I already knew everything I

    Ratings: 4 1/2 Stars
    I thought that I already knew everything I needed to know about this book from reading the book flap and was I wrong. Meant to Be is a delightful YA contemp that is perfect for a light reading by the pool or at the beach. Lauren Morrill captures the voice of Julia, our main character, perfectly and, being a mini-Julia in high school, I was able to relate to her the whole way through. Morrill captures the awkwardness of being a teenager perfectly as well as the fantasy that all girls have about our MTB (I still think that my MTB and I haven’t stumbled onto each other yet).
    First, can I say that I am insanely jealous about the 10-day London trip these HIGH SCHOOL students were able to take!? When I was in high school, the only trip I went on was to New York City and, while I enjoyed it immensely, I do wish that I took advantage of the international trips my drama class went on. Likewise, Morrill caught the excitement of going on a trip as well as the boringness of being stuck with a chaperone on a planned trip perfectly.
    The only real gripe I had about this book is that while Morrill did an excellent job in giving the individual characters their voices, I didn’t really see the relationship between these characters. I already knew that Justin was going to be the love interest and it was like she took that for granted by not putting in too much work on making the signs start off as subtle until it grows to a full-fledged crush. The other thing is that I did not see NIck (Julia’s MTB) as a creep even when he started hitting on “Chris” at the coffeeshop. I feel as though she prefered to tell us about these personality traits and character changes rather than showing it to us and that’s the only reason why I knocked off half a star off the review.
    With that said, go ahead and read this book thinking that you already know the plot. This book will surprise you. When I read the book flap, I thought automatically that it was Jason who was sending the “text messages from a mysterious secret admirer” and that he liked Julia enough to pull the ruse. That’s why I was extremely focused on the passages that show him reading his text messages because I was sure that he was sending Julia the text messages somehow (I was determined to figure out how before I got to the ending). Turns out that the truth was completely unfathomable and that the case of the switched phones made me question my ability to almost accurately judge the ending of stories.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2013

    Do not like it

    Boring story.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2013

    i loved this book and i could not put it down but what i really

    i loved this book and i could not put it down but what i really want is for there to be another what happens julia and jason please write another

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2013

    Book reveiw

    In loce with this book!!!! There are twist and shocking details that brings this book to life!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Posted April 10, 2013

     

     

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2013

    Highly Recommended - A happy read

    I think this book would be a pleasant escape for a girl of any age. A good young romance.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2013

    A must read

    This book is sooo good, a must read. It is light and fun which is exactly what someone needs after a long week. I read it in one sitting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2013

    Good book

    :)

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews

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