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Meet Cute: Some People Are Destined to Meet

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Whether or not you believe in fate, or luck, or love at first sight, every romance has to start somewhere. MEET CUTE is an anthology of original short stories featuring tales of "how they first met" from some of today’s most popular YA authors.

Readers will experience Nina LaCour's beautifully written piece about two Bay Area girls meeting via a cranky customer service Tweet, Sara Shepard's glossy tale about a magazine intern and a young rock star, Nicola Yoon's imaginative take on break-ups and make-ups, Katie Cotugno's story of two teens hiding out from the police at a house party, and Huntley Fitzpatrick's charming love story that begins over iced teas at a diner. There’s futuristic flirting from Kass Morgan and Katharine McGee, a riveting transgender heroine from Meredith Russo, a subway missed connection moment from Jocelyn Davies, and a girl determined to get out of her small town from Ibi Zoboi. Jennifer Armentrout writes a sweet story about finding love from a missing library book, Emery Lord has a heartwarming and funny tale of two girls stuck in an airport, Dhonielle Clayton takes a thoughtful, speculate approach to pre-destined love, and Julie Murphy dreams up a fun twist on reality dating show contestants.

This incredibly talented group of authors brings us a collection of stories that are at turns romantic and witty, epic and everyday, heartbreaking and real.

314 pages, Hardcover

First published January 2, 2018

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About the author

Jennifer L. Armentrout

153 books116k followers
Hey Guys! Please note: I don't send out ARCs for review. If you're interested in reviewing a book of mine before release date, please contact the appropriate publisher. I also do NOT check my Goodreads email.

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# 1 New York Times and # 1 International Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Charles Town, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki. In early 2015, Jennifer was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, a group of rare genetic disorders that involve a breakdown and death of cells in the retina, eventually resulting in loss of vision, among other complications. Due to this diagnosis, educating people on the varying degrees of blindness has become of passion of hers, right alongside writing, which she plans to do as long as she can.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Tor, HarperCollins Avon and William Morrow, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her Wicked Series has been optioned by PassionFlix. Jennifer has won numerous awards, including the 2013 Reviewers Choice Award for Wait for You, the 2015 Editor’s Pick for Fall With Me, and the 2014/2015 Moerser-Jugendbuch- Jury award for Obsidian. Her young adult romantic suspense novel DON’T LOOK BACK was a 2014 nominated Best in Young Adult Fiction by YALSA. Her adult romantic suspense novel TILL DEATH was a Amazon Editor’s Pick and iBook Book of the Month. Her young adult contemporary THE PROBLEM WITH FOREVER is a 2017 RITA Award Winner in Young Adult Fiction. She also writes Adult and New Adult contemporary and paranormal romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

She is the owner of ApollyCon and The Origin Event, the successful annual events that features over hundred bestselling authors in Young Adult, New Adult, and Adult Fiction, panels, parties, and more.

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Profile Image for Elle (ellexamines).
1,084 reviews17.4k followers
June 16, 2019
so it turns out love is a real and not fake thing that exists!! who knew? I certainly did not!

It might be sort of horribly ironic that I rated almost half these stories a very mixed and very mediocre three stars. BUT there were some super great standouts, hm? Some that might… I don’t know… warrant buying this entire collection?

Okay. Somewhere That’s Green by Meredith Russo was fantastic and important and so worth the read. Oomph by Emery Lord is the Cutest thing I have ever read. The Unlikely Likelihood Falling In Love by Jocelyn Davies was sort of shockingly adorable. And The Department of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon was so thoughtful and creative, I never wanted it to end. If you’re looking for some other clever stories, look to Nina LaCour’s aestheticy Print Shop, Dhonielle Clayton’s different The Way We Love Here, or Julie Murphy’s sweet Something Real.

But first, let me be totally honest: I only gave half these stories over three stars. Four five stars, two four stars, six three stars, one two, one one, for an average raiting of - get this - exactly a 3.5 star. So overall a pretty decent anthology? I wish a few of the threes had been edited just a bit more, because I think a bunch of them could have been so great! But oh well. Let’s get into the stories!

Also, because Apple hates me, I'll be using this flag 🇸🇱 to denote lead sapphic characters - that is basically the only sort of lgbtq diversity we got in this anthology, aside from literally One sapphic trans girl, which is kind of sad - and ☀️ to denote lead characters of color!! thank you for reading My In Depth Opinions and not allowing me to just yell into the interwebs, without further ado:

Siege Etiquette by Katie Cotugno ← ★★★☆☆
Slightly unlikeable narrator who I ended up empathizing with. Clever reveal halfway through the story that I didn’t see coming. Unfortunately, a completely forgettable meet-cute involving cheating.

Print Shop by Nina LaCour ← ★★★★☆ 🇸🇱☀️
This was so soft! Beautiful intro and outro really elevate this story. Evie and Lauren’s interactions are brief, but so freaking adorable.

Hourglass by Ibi Zoboi ← ★★★☆☆ ☀️
Dark-skinned and large-bodied lead character Cherish has a freaking awesome character arc, but the meet cute itself here is basically the last page of the story. Best friend Stacy is just… such an asshole, which is hard to handle when their drama is played off.
And perhaps worst of all, the writing is just not good.

Click by Katharine McGee ← ★★★☆☆
Alexa and Raden meet on a date where they’ve been perfectly matched. Maybe more of a 3 1/2! This was sweet but nothing that actually stood out? Also, I think my utter hatred for something this author once wrote has kind of ruined her for me. Whoops.

The Intern by Sara Shepard ← ★★☆☆☆
Intern Clara meets pop star Phineas and has a weird and not-built-up date with him. Well, okay, first of all, none of the emotional punches the story goes for are actually earned so it just feels… random. Did anyone notice of the first FIVE stories, THREE are about the death of a family member? And jesus, this celebrity x intern thing is really so boring now.

Somewhere That’s Green by Meredith Russo ← ★★★★★ 🇸🇱
Out trans girl Nia has been awarded a petition to use the correct bathroom. Closeted Lexie petitions the school to take it back… and then realizes she’s doing it for her parents. Listen, this would’ve been so easy a concept to fuck up, but this story gets it right, never excusing Lexie’s actions but also giving her a decent amount of narrative sympathy. Nia is written fantastically – this is actually #ownvoices for trans rep! – and was such a compelling and awesome character. Also the ending of this was so fucking iconic!! This was basically perfect and I’m reading everything this author ever writes now.

The Way We Love Here by Dhonielle Clayton ← ★★★☆☆ ☀️
Probably the most positive of all my three-star ratings. Scared-of-love Viola meets cute guy Sebastian on an island where everyone has soulmate bands. Viola’s character totally made this story for me – she’s such a compelling protagonist. And I’m always a slut for good fate stories. Biggest problem: I love the Twelfth Night reference, but why did it have to be the two siblings from that play? Why would you do this @ Dhonielle Clayton I need an answer

Oomph by Emery Lord ← ★★★★★ 🇸🇱
Peggy Carter and Natasha Romanoff meet in an airport and flirt their way through a flight delay. This is literally the purest thing I’ve read in my fucking life? Hilarious banter + compelling characters = happy me. I literally want to read a full novel about these two girls. They’re SO CUTE. AND PERFECT. This feels like a Hayley Kiyoko song.

The Dictionary of You and Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout ← ★★★☆☆
Library volunteer Moss tries to get a boy to return an overdue dictionary. I thought this was sort of sweet, but I really cannot deny that it the banter is truly badly written. Good flirting is really hard to write, but here’s a tip - don’t mention your characters laughing at things that are not really that funny. IT’S FUNNIER WHEN THEY DON’T LAUGH. I actually think this might’ve been higher if not for how fantastic Oomph’s banter was, but my standards were moved too high? Yikes?

The Unlikely Likelihood Falling In Love by Jocelyn Davies ← ★★★★★ ☀️
Logic girl Sam tries to calculate the possibility of seeing a boy on the passing train again. IM GOING TO SCREAM AT HOW CUTE THIS WAS. None of you can ever understand how fucking cute? And sweet? And Good? This was? And it was so well-written! The author really knows how to drop in humor and leave it there rather than trying to force laughs.

259 Million Miles by Kass Morgan ← ★★★☆☆
Oh wow, I was sort of expecting this to be shit? This follows Philip and Blythe, a boy and a girl stuck in a locked room for 24 hours to evaluate personality. Okay, this story works because the 1) the concept is great, 2) the stakes are really high, and 3) the dialogue is actually sort of decent. The lead female character is a total manic pixie dream girl, because we only have two male protagonists in this whole damn book, so at least one of the female romantic interests has to lack personality! But I weirdly got vaguely invested in the couple, which… wow? And yes, it was a little bittersweet, but I actually ended up liking how this story ended.

Something Real by Julie Murphy ← ★★★★☆ 🇸🇱☀️
I LOVE LOVE. This has basically the best concept ever, in which two girls competing for a dating show end up falling in love, and I totally wish it had been a full-length novel. I would read 2000 more pages of June and Martha going on dates. And I laughed out loud multiple times.

Say Everything by Huntley Fitzpatrick ← ★☆☆☆☆
A guy asks a girl out at a diner while she is working as a waitress for his table. What an asshole, right? There is so much that is terrible about this story. The meet-cute is so woefully unromantic. The dialogue is so embarrassingly generic. The portrayal of sudden poverty is so completely tropey and overblown and just… no. The second person is awkward. And our big, fucking romantic hero reads as pretty creepy.

The Department of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon ← ★★★★★ ☀️
This story made me feel like the most fake-deep person in the whole world. But in a good way? A recent breakup victim tries to go through love departments to do over his relationship... until he meets a girl working at one of the departments. The worldbuilding of this one is definitely the focus, but honestly, I am occasionally a sucker for brilliant concept work. I really wish this could be a full book. and this story also contains my favorite quote from the anthology:
“Some people you want to get to know and some people you want to know you. I think that's the difference.”

Yeah. In case you didn't notice, I really liked this collection.

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Profile Image for Nat.
553 reviews3,176 followers
June 5, 2020
Sometimes I just need to get sucked into a feel-good story and stay there until I'm finished. Thankfully, I accomplished just that with this anthology full of short bursts of sweetness with meet-cutes, butterflies, first impressions, and so much more.


Just some of my personal memorable stories from the book:

• Nina LaCour's Print Shop:

Funnily enough, this story opens with our main character, Evie, receiving her first job where she's set to develop an online presence for a print shop she chose mainly for its lack of computers. I loved how we got such a solid grip on the atmosphere of the shop and the people working there, like, I could smell the air engulfing Evie the minute she walked in, similar to what I mentioned in my review for LaCour's We Are Okay. I especially cherished Neve, who's eight months pregnant and doesn't care to overshare:

“But then Neve leaned forward and said, “We’ve been basking in a seemingly eternal youth, and now, shit, I’m thirty-seven. I told Eduardo now or never and threw the condoms away.” She leaned back and laughed. “Okay, thanks for tolerating my overshare. I like you. You’re hired.”
“Oh,” I said. “Thanks!” I shook my head to rid it of the image of the two of them having sex, and stood up to shake her hand.”

Weirdly relieved when I read that last sentence and realized how everyone desperately tries to erase that image in their head.

But things really get going when Evie receives a cranky customers service tweet, demanding justice be served to Principal Hope not principle hope.

• Dhonielle Clayton's The Way We Love Here:

“None of us know when our time is up. The gods gave us one gift—to know when our loves would come. The best part of life. It would be greedy to ask for more.”

The blurb describing this as a predestined tale of love had me thinking it would lead to a bunch of sappy one-liners about the greatness of romance, but in all actuality, I was surprised for the better thanks to the characters' self-deprecating humor and eerily relatable overthinking thoughts.

“I’ve never held hands with anyone outside of Momma, my sister, and Papa. The elders of Meridien say that this type of intimacy is reserved for blood relatives and beloveds. They warn us about the dangers that could happen: falling in love with the wrong person, ending up alone, altering the will of the gods, confusing the senses, and losing our fingers. The newspapers print cautionary tales about young teens who disregard the warning. They make sure to include their sad pictures. I’ve never done it. Then again, I’ve never had a boy with whom to try.”

We then receive this rare opportunity to look into Vio and Sebastien's future lives together, which reminded me of another similar short story from a #LoveOzYA Anthology that I absolutely adored last year: I Can See the Ending by Will Kostakis. “It’s different, when you know its ending.”

• Jennifer L. Armentrout's The Dictionary Of You And Me:

Following Moss's ongoing mission at the library to retrieve the way-overdue dictionary from a certain H. Smith.

Interestingly enough, the ongoing flirting and bantering that took place between the two over the phone was put a little on the back burner for me as I had a magical time living vicariously through her to see what a job at the library would entail. Swoon.

But that's not to say that I wasn't left with a megawatt smile on my face upon reading their amusing conversations as well.

“I’ve missed you,” he said, surprising me. Even without a mirror, I knew my pink skin was getting even pinker.
Clearing my throat, I focused on the task at hand. “There is no way you could’ve missed me.”
“And why not?” he replied, sounding amused.
“We don’t even know each other.”
“I don’t think that’s true. I mean, at least I feel like I know you.” There was a pause. “Just the other day, you told me you hated turkey.”
I had told him that, though I couldn’t remember how that topic of convo had come up. “Yeah, and just the other day you told me the reason you’d been unable to return the dictionary was because you were touring the back roads of France.”
He chuckled. “That’s not a lie.”
“Oh, really?”
“I’ve been checking them out on Google Maps.”
My lips twitched.”

I'm a sucker for smooth talkers in books.

The Unlikely Likelihood Of Falling In Love by Jocelyn Davies:

“I may or may not have fallen in love at first sight with a boy on the B train. I’m doing my final project on the likelihood of seeing him again.”

I wasn't expecting to like this one as much as I did because I rarely if ever appreciate "love at first sight" stories. But Jocelyn Davies took an interesting spin on this trope.

The reason I cherished this tale was mainly that I saw so much of myself exposed within the main character. As I once read somewhere (and I'm desperately wishing I remembered the source here): There's something completely indescribable about reading someone's story and being able to see some of yours in it. Like, her calculating the chances of meeting the cute boy she randomly passed on her morning route is all too relatable to me.

“Alex’s right,” she said, dipping her brush into a blob of hunter-green paint. “It’s fate.”
“It’s not fate,” I countered. “It’s math.”
“Why do you think you keep seeing him? Why do you think both of your trains stopped at the exact same time? It’s fate, I’m telling you.”
“I’ll tell you why I keep seeing him. He goes to school in Brooklyn. I go to school in Manhattan. School starts at pretty much the same time every day no matter what school you go to. There are only a limited number of ways to cross between Brooklyn and Manhattan, and one of them is the Manhattan Bridge. See? The pool of variables keeps getting smaller and smaller. If you think about it, how could I not see him?”

This right here is my two inner voices arguing on paper.

And this next passage then captures that moment of trying to comfort yourself that it's for the best if you never see him again:

If we did ever meet IRL, then he would become real. And all this perfect stuff I sort of knew about him would be all mixed up with imperfect stuff, the real stuff, the stuff no one wants to know. The stuff that would take him out of the early morning haze of my dreams and into the cold hard daylight of reality.”

But once in a blue moon, the universe (or the author of a story) has something bigger in store and all we can do is wait. I wasn't expecting to feel this seen with this anthology but I'm glad I was.

• Julie Murphy's Something Real:

Entertaining reality TV told through short fiction? Yes, please!

Something Real follows our main character, June Smith, as she's going through the trials of entering a reality dating show contest with her favorite singer Dylan as the "prize."

At the heart of it all, though, is a story of fandom, girls supporting girls, and connection.

“Those lyrics, they were, like, immediately seared into my brain. It was almost like all the words in that song existed inside of me, but Dylan had somehow grouped them all together and sorted them out. And not only that, but he could freaking sing. That video of him in his dad’s basement. Just acoustic. Nothing fancy. I would turn that song on and close all the curtains in my room and just lie there in the dark. I should’ve felt so alone, but I didn’t. And I wanted that feeling all the time. But Dylan’s one person.” I laugh a little. “I’m not some psycho who’s going to stalk him at his house, so I decided to find people who felt just as alone as I did. I guess I just thought we could be alone together, or maybe—just maybe—we’d find that we weren’t all that alone to begin with.”

It was also just dizzyingly and irresistibly enjoying to read.This is reality TV at its peak. The author said it best when she talked about June's competitor, Martha: “I’m hanging on her every word. I know this has nothing to do with Dylan or his music or this stupid date we’re competing for, but if Jill is out to make good TV, she knows how to get it done.”

I'm glad that what I was feeling was conveyed on paper, but it made me laugh when I remembered this post: Whenever a character congratulates another character in a book for being clever,it basically means the author is congratulating himself for being smart.

On that note, I have one last story I want to mention which is Nicola Yoon's The Department Of Dead Love. There's a question she posed in it that I found radically important to know the answer to. It goes as follows: “What do you think the difference between wanting to be friends and wanting to be more than friends is?”

And Yoon did not disappoint in her theory: “Some people you want to get to know and some people you want to know you. I think that’s the difference.”

Overall, upon completing each story, I had an insurmountable amount of fun revisiting the words of some of my favorite YA authors. As well as trying to guess which couple was being featured on the cover.

Meet Cute-- bookspoils

Lastly, I'd like to feature the theme song playing in the back of mind throughout this anthology performed by the one and only Adele.


Note: I'm an Amazon Affiliate. If you're interested in buying Meet Cute, just click on the image below to go through my link. I'll make a small commission!

This review and more can be found on my blog.
Profile Image for Lala BooksandLala.
500 reviews61.9k followers
January 21, 2018
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Profile Image for High Lady of The Night Court.
135 reviews5,054 followers
December 31, 2019
This is a wonderful book and will help you get out of a reading slump if you are in one.

All the stories in this book dealt with quite the range of topics and every single one is vastly different than the rest. Every author approached the topic of a meet cute in their own way and watching how they laid out their stories was beautiful. I suppose this book is so easy to read because there is a lot less apprehension in the reader because we simply know that a meet cute will happen and the story beyond is unknown to us, there is some comfort in not knowing if the relationship will come crashing down and break all our hearts. Ignorance is bliss, in this case at least.

Even if you don’t enjoy all the stories in this book I’m pretty sure that you will like at least one. That, I think, is incentive enough to try it out. There is not much I can say because this book is an anthology, but I will say that I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would and every story is precious in its own way.

Just in case you wanted to know these are the stories in the book:

Siege Etiquette: KATIE COTUGNO
Hourglass:IBI ZOBOI
Somewhere That’s Green:EREDITH RUSSO
The Dictionary Of You And Me:JENNIFER L. ARMENTROUT
The Unlikely Likelihood Of Falling In Love:JOCELYN DAVIES
259 Million Miles:KASS MORGAN
Something Real:JULIE MURPHY
The Department Of Dead Love:NICOLA YOON
Profile Image for Heather.
387 reviews16.8k followers
January 2, 2018

LOVED this! Definitely one of my new favorite YA anthologies! There were 4 stories in this collection I gave 5 stars to!
Such an adorable, diverse and fun read!

* I will be filming a review on this where I tell you my individual ratings for each story which I will then post to here!*
Profile Image for Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd).
332 reviews7,309 followers
January 18, 2018
Average rating: 3.2/5
My rating: 3/5

This had such high points and low points, which is exactly how I feel after every single anthology I read. I think the concept of this whole collection was nice, but I would have liked a couple more stories from male perspectives - and a m/m story perhaps? Don't get me wrong, I loved how many f/f stories were in this, but I think it could have benefited from some other narrators. But let's get into my specific feelings on all 14 stories.

Breakdown of the stories:
Siege Etiquette by Katie Cotugno - 2/5
A very odd way to start the collection. I think the second person was a bit strange, but I adjusted. However, there was a very cavalier use of cheating that definitely didn't endear me to the characters.

Print Shop by Nina LaCour - 3.5/5
I will always adore Nina's writing. This had a very cute, romance vibe, which is exactly what I was looking for in this collection. It was nice to see a super rom com set up for two girls falling in love (in this instance, falling for each other over Twitter in the midst of customer service frustrations). The POV shift was a bit strange, but still an overall solid story.

Hourglass by Ibi Zoboi - 3/5
I thought this did a great job of tackling issues like body image, coming from a poor family, and college prep, but I felt like the best friend relationship was very lackluster in how it was dealt with. Also, the meet cute itself left me wanting more.

Click by Katharine McGee - 4/5
Such a cute story. I may have been in a particular mood for reading this, considering I had just barely watched the "Don't Hang the DJ" episode of Black Mirror, but I felt like the dating app aspect worked perfectly. Also, a big fan of the split POV. It definitely helped me to know BOTH of the characters more, and to feel more invested in their meet cute.

The Intern by Sara Shepard - 3/5
This was cute, but overall just rushed. I felt like none of the emotional punches were really earned, because I didn't get enough of a chance to know the characters and be impacted by the things they had gone through. The relationship also felt very rushed.

Somewhere That's Green by Meredith Russo - 4/5
I loved this story, and I love Meredith Russo. This was f/f, and it was also split POV. One of the POV characters was a trans girl, and the other was a closeted lesbian, and they both wind up being cast in their high school production of Little Shop of Horrors. This tackles some huge stuff, especially transphobia, but I thought it did it all beautifully and also managed to fit in a wonderful meet cute. It's possible I was even more charmed by this considering my sister is currently in her school's production of Little Shop, but it is what it is.

The Way We Love Here by Dhonielle Clayton - 4/5
This has a really magical vibe and I enjoyed that aspect. I think there is a huge amount of skill involved in worldbuilding within a short story, which Dhonielle absolutely pulled off. This covers years and years of a relationship, and it doesn't feel rushed or forced in any way, which is so impressive.

Oomph by Emery Lord - 5/5
CLEARLY my favorite of the entire collection. This was perfect in every way. Give me a full novel about these two amazing girls meeting in an airport and falling for each other, seriously. I have never read anything by Emery Lord before, but I will definitely be checking out more of her books after reading this.

The Dictionary of You and Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout - 2/5
I think my overall review of this was that I just didn't care? I didn't care about the characters, the story, the stakes, etc. I spent most of the time rolling my eyes. It was a stumbling block in the middle of a really solid run of stories and I just didn't care for it.

The Unlikely Likelihood of Falling in Love by Jocelyn Davies - 3.5/5
This was absolutely ridiculous, but I was still super charmed by it. I mean the concept - seeing someone on the subway and falling instantly in love, then using an AP statistics assignment to track them down again - is absurd, but I loved the way it was written. I don't know how this one got me, but it did.

259 Million Miles by Kass Morgan - 2/5
This was the first story to have a solely male POV, and I really wish it had been stronger. I think this tried to tackle way too much in a limited amount of space, and the love interest was laughably one-dimensional. Also, with how this ended, I don't know if I would really consider this a meet cute?

Something Real by Julie Murphy - 3.5/5
I'm giving out huge points to a great concept right here. I mean, it was solid. I thought it tried a little too hard with the emotional stuff near the beginning, but by the end I was grinning ear to ear.

Say Everything by Huntley Fitzpatrick - 2/5
I read this earlier today and I've already forgotten what it was even about... Yikes, let me go look back at it. Ah, yes. Ok, this one tried to tackle like a hundred deep, emotional issues, and I don't think it really managed any of them well. It was a really bizarre concept that I don't really think worked. And, apparently, it's a bit forgettable.

The Department of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon - 3/5
I thought the worldbuilding of this was absolutely incredible. If you want to know what it takes to build a totally new world in the space of a short story, I recommend checking this out. However, I think the relationship itself was a little weak. This is the only other story with a solely male POV, but I just wasn't very invested in him or the new relationship that was happening.

And that's it, those are my thoughts on Meet Cute. If you like anthologies, I think this is a pretty solid, standard YA anthology, but expect the highs with the lows. My favorite aspect of this book was the diversity, and the sheer number of f/f stories. It was really appreciated, especially in an anthology like this where it was just cute and romantic and simple. Ladies falling in love don't usually get that sort of story in mainstream YA, and I loved how many got the chance to in this collection.

*Thanks to the publishers who provided me with a copy of this book through Netgalley*
Profile Image for emma.
1,822 reviews48.1k followers
January 9, 2018

from an artistic standpoint, that is. i like romantic comedies. i like romantic subplots in my favorite TV shows. all the best songs are about love. i read an endless string of disappointing contemporaries because every once in a while, i find one that makes me feel something.

i'm cynical and pessimistic and sometimes mean. i can be bitter and hardhearted. but i like love-related art.

so i was excited for this book, and, to some degree, i got what i expected. maybe not what i hoped for, but what i expected.

some of these stories are good. a lot of them aren't. a few were really enthralling. there was a level of diversity that was really pleasantly surprising.

short stories really feel like taking a bite of a cookie and putting it down, and as such there's really a limit to how much i can enjoy them. but still - this wasn't an awful reading experience.

bottom line: not worse than i'd thought it would be - but certainly no better.
Profile Image for Nina.
754 reviews278 followers
January 4, 2018
*Thanks to HMH Books for Young Readers for sending me an ARC of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*

Actual Rating: 3.54/5 stars

Siege Etiquette by Katie Cotugno: 2 stars
Unfortunately, I disliked both the POV of this story and the author’s writing style. Siege Etiquette was cute, but I also think that it wasn’t that interesting and I definitely wouldn’t be interested in reading more of this story.

Print Shop by Nina LaCour: 3.5 stars
I once again didn’t like the POV but unlike the first story, this one was very well written and also a lot more interesting.

Hourglass by Ibi Zoboi: 3 stars
This time, I really liked the POV the author chose for this story and I also really liked Ibi Zoboi’s writing style. I just think that ‘Hourglass’ was a little boring.

Click by Katharine McGee: 4 stars
I loved the idea of this short story and also think it was very well written. I would even be interested in reading more of this because it was just so interesting.

The Intern by Sara Shepard: 4.25 stars
‘The Intern’ was a cute and gripping story and I would definitely be interested in reading more of it. I also really liked the characters and Sara Shepard’s writing style.

Somewhere That’s Green by Meredith Russo: 1.5 stars
Unfortunately, this was my least favorite short story from this anthology. I really loved how the main character of this story was transgender because you don’t get to see that very often but I just feel like the entire plot was a complete disaster. The whole story was extremely confusing and at the end of it, I still hadn’t completely understood how all the characters were related to each other and what was actually going on. ‘Somewhere That’s Green’ was just very boring and I definitely wouldn’t be interested in reading more of this.

The Way We Love Here by Dhonielle Clayton: 4.5 stars
‘The Way We Love Here’ was a very interesting story and I loved the plot. I also immediately fell in love with the characters and would be interested in reading more about them.

Oomph by Emery Lord: 4.75 stars
This was such a cute story and I would love to read more about how their story continues once they both live in New York. I also loved Emery Lord’s writing style and I think I will definitely go and check out some of her other books because I’d never heard about her prior to reading this anthology.

The Dictionary of You and Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout: 5 stars
This was definitely my favorite story out of all the ones featured in this anthology. I just loved the characters and the whole idea with the library. It would’ve been great if this story had been a lot longer.

The Unlikely Likelihood of Falling in Love by Jocelyn Davies: 4 stars
I loved the idea of writing this like a statistics project and also think this was very well written. The plot was interesting and I also really liked the characters. A great short story.

259 Million Miles by Kass Morgan: 4 stars
This was an interesting story and I liked how it had a little bit of a different ending from all the other stories. Furthermore, I also really liked how it was written from the male main characters point of view.

Something Real by Julie Murphy: 3.5 stars
This was such a cute, little, fun story that was very well written and had an ending which I think was really interesting.

Say Everything by Huntley Fitzpatrick: 2.5 stars
I once again just didn’t like the POV of this story and also think it was a little boring even though it was still cute.

The Department of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon: 3 stars
I loved the idea of the ‘Department of Love’ but even though this was an interesting story, I also thought parts of it were pretty boring.

Overall, this was probably one of the most adorable books I’ve ever read and it’s definitely a great anthology that deserves to be read!
Profile Image for Carmen.
2,056 reviews1,855 followers
March 11, 2018
Let's just get into this.


Your heart is a siren wailing deep inside your chest.

Hailey hides out with farmboy Wolf when police come to bust up her friend's party.

Some things really annoyed me about this story.

For one thing, Cotugno lets us know that there is a darkness in Hailey's life. What is it? How can we possibly be in her head and not know? I hate when authors pull this shit. The narrator has some deep, dark secret. In this case it is a secret from no one but the reader. Not sure what Cotugno is trying to accomplish with this. It's deeply annoying. And no one cares when the 'secret' is revealed near the end. Honestly, I don't give a fuck.

Secondly, this is told in second-person narration. This is going to really bother some people.

Thirdly, Hailey and Wolf don't “meet cute” exactly, they have known each other since childhood. They've gone to the same school since kindergarten. Hailey only takes an interest in Wolf when she accidentally ends up camped out with him in a bathroom during a raid.

I'd also like to point out that Hailey is not a pleasant person. This story involves cheating, Hailey has a boyfriend but has kissing with Wolf.

He's not a great kisser, unpracticed and a little spitty, but you actually don't care about that at all: there are tiny explosions going off all over your body, like sparks flying up out of a campfire. Wolf puts both hands on your face. You want to stay like this forever even even though you know it's impossible, that it's just a weird stopover, like how during the Revolutionary War the two armies took breaks and had Christmas together, then went back to shooting each other with muskets after the roasts were gone. You aren't sure where you got that fact, actually – you didn't read it in any of your dad's old books – and you don't know if it's true or just something someone made up to make the world seem less brutal. Here in this bathroom with Wolf Goshen, it feels like maybe it could possibly be real.

“I'm not breaking up with Jay,” you blurt finally, your face on fire, your whole body buzzing like a burned-out neon sign.

GREAT. Just kiss the guy, mindfuck him, and then be like, “Oh, btw, I'm not serious about any of this. Don't think I'm breaking up with my boyfriend.”

Her whole 'queen bee' schtick is pretty gross, actually.

You're already thinking about how you're going to make her life a living hell come Monday. There are some benefits to being the queen bee.

She even says some cruel things to him.

"You didn't seem to have a problem with them when you were tracking your dirty boots all over their houses and drinking their beer," you say snottily - and that's good, you think with some nasty satisfaction. That's exactly the kind of thing the old you would have said. "Back when you were doing that, they were all just fine."

So, to recap: she ends up in a dark bathroom with a boy she's never really taken any interest in, and decides to fuck around with him because


Which I guess means cheating on your boyfriend in the bathroom with some rando.

b.) Her boyfriend “doesn't really listen to her.”

Still, every once in a while while you're talking you can see that he might as well be on planet Mars for everything he's actually hearing. There is something wonderful about Wolf Goshen that makes you think he'd listen for real.

Oh, yeah, great justification for cheating there. /s

c.) She's the queen bee and she enjoys having control over and fucking with other people.

”It was your dream a little bit, through, right?” you ask him, smiling a little. “To be in here with me?”

Wolf laughs at that. “Are you serious right now?” he asks, but he's BLUSHING, and you know you've won.

This girl is just very strange.

You're about to tell him he's right - that you ARE something else, and that something can be his for one night only - when you hear a familiar voice trilling out across the driveway.

o.O Okay. So... have just turned you into a loose cannon that fucks random boys in dark bathrooms with reckless abandon. Which you consider “living your fucking life.” But... not wild enough to actually ditch your useless boyfriend or deal with the consequences of your actions or anything. I mean, let's not get too crazy here. o.O

I'm willing to believe having would affect someone and screw them up, so perhaps Hailey's bizarre behaviors are understandable in a certain light. Not in any light I'm shining, though.

Cotugno has a strange writing style, she loves the words “scrum” and “nasty,” and she uses some strange turns of phrase.

The combination of noise and sound sets something off in you, a cold animal panic. Suddenly it feels very important to hide.

Can animal panic be cold? Sounds rather warm to me, but oh well.

You don't know if you've ever actually bothered to look at him before, like in your head he was a walking, sentient wheat stalk. That's not the impression you get now at all. His clothes are clean, if a little bit trashy: light-wash jeans and a faded T-shirt with the Ghostbusters logo on it, plus a pair of knockoff Timberland boots. His eyes are bright and intelligent and sharp. He could do okay, you think, in a place like New York City or California, where the past doesn't cling like the smell of dirty laundry.

Walking, sentient wheat stalk. Okay.

He's got his hands folded in his lap, like he's praying; he's got long fingers and round, knobby knuckles, the nails bitten way far down. You imagine them tending an animal or fixing some kind of complicated machinery, which immediately makes you feel like an idiot. God, you must be further gone than you thought.

I don't know what this means. Does this mean she's sexually / romantically fantasizing about him? Or... that she's naïve about farm work or... what?

You remember something else then, pulled from the depths of your brain like a slimy scrum of seaweed...

I like some things about this story, in theory.

You have never been the aggressor in a situation like this in your life, and you find you do not hate it.

I'd love a story where a female is the sexually assertive one. Unfortunately, this cannot be enjoyed by me since she's a.) cheating on her boyfriend and b.) using this boy like a piece of meat. So, nice try, Cotugno, but as a romance this just isn't selling me.

I also kind of liked Wolf, despite his unlikely name. Farmboy, straight-shooter, too good for Hailey's little games. He gets sucked into them anyway because... she's hot? I guess? o.O

TL;DR – Abrupt ending. No real resolution or point. Not bad writing, but not spectacular either. If you are coming at this from a ROMANCE angle, I am going to have to say this is a failure. She's cheating on this mark because she's fucked-up in the head, basically. She treats him like trash. There's no hope for a future between these two, and even Cotugno points that out. So. If you are coming at this from a FICTION angle, and not as a romance, Cotugno does marginally better. Yes, Hailey is unlikable and cruel, but it's popular to make your heroines 'flawed' nowadays. And it's not hard to believe that the event she experienced made her a little fucked-up psychologically. *shrug* I kind of like Wolf, and the part where Hailey describes what her name sounds like in his mouth is accurate, when a man (well, in this case he is a boy) says your name deliberately and it's really sexual and you get that little shiver... I know exactly what she's talking about. But, overall, 3 out of 5 stars. M/F


I chose this shop because it was the only one I could find that didn't work digitally. They didn't even have a website. Everyone is always telling my generation that we aren't going to know how to engage with people. We're all going to end up with computer chips implanted in our brains and screens stuck in our eyes like contact lenses. But no one gives us any solutions, so I decided to find my own. Plus, I wanted to learn how to make that kind of magic. Ink and metal and screens and paper. I wanted to do something with my hands.

Really boring story about a woman (this is not about teens, it's about adults) who somehow develops a crush on a woman who is blasting MC's new workplace on Twitter. Who knows why. Sounds ridiculous and unbelievable to me.

So boring. Mindcrushingly boring. 1 out of 5 stars. F/F


In my head, I'm texting Stacy about this new boy in town who goes to Shaw County and looks like an African superhero. And he makes dresses. Stacy, he makes dresses!

This story was also pretty boring and pointless. Cherish is a 6'5” black girl who lives in a white town. She wants to go to prom, but has no one to go with. She finds out her best friend is still dating the asshole who made memes of all the black students at the school by pasting their headshots onto gorilla bodies. Yeah, real racist scumbag, right? Our love interest doesn't come in until the second-to-last page. Am I supposed to be excited by this? Zoboi doesn't give me any time to be excited or even interested.

Boring story. No point. Mediocre writing. 1 out of 5 stars. M/F

STORY FOUR: CLICK by Katharine McGee

All the "dates" Alexa had ever been on (she used the term loosely) had involved the computer lab or peanut M&M's or sex; or on a good night, all three.

This is another story about adults over the age of 18. Alexa joins “Click,” a new dating site.

The moment Alexa joined the service, it swept the Web with surgical precision, finding every last trace of her digital presence: her Facebook posts, the scans of her high school yearbooks, every item she'd purchased or commented on or "liked." Click compiled it all, a web of lingering digital fingerprints...

When the man she's supposed to meet approaches her at the restaurant, she's intimidated. Could this smooth, confident guy really be interested in her!? Raden has his doubts as well.

Except he knew he wouldn't have talked to Alexa if it weren't for Click. She was nothing like the girls he normally went for, with their dangly earrings and loud voices, wearing short dresses in primary colors.

That's... oddly specific. o.O

Even though this isn't an amazing story, IMO, at least it is mildly interesting. 3 out of 5 stars. M/F


Lame story about a 17-year-old who meets a rock star who INSTANTLY falls for her. Yeah, if you are rolling your eyes already, we are on the same page. They just “have a connection” and “understand each other” and he “sees her as a volcanic goddess.”

”You are Pele. You just don't know it.”

And he stops mid-song to run offstage after her when she leaves a concert in tears. YOU KNOW. This kind of story.

Shepard's writing isn't terrible, but it isn't particularly amazing, either.

A tall guy had materialized in front of me. He had a yellow-and-maroon scarf wrapped around his neck - very Harry Potter. His wild, thick, blue-black hair was cut in choppy peaks that ended at his pointy chin, and his wide-set brown eyes were framed with the longest lashes I'd ever seen. His expression - an appealing mix of awkwardness, cleverness, and kindness.

2 out of 5 stars. M/F


Lexie didn't actually care about fashion. She wore nothing but hoodies, cardigans, and T-shirts from church. Lexie DID like girls, though, and this was the only safe way to look at them without her parents catching on immediately, though she doubted they would believe she had any interest in haute couture. Still, the women in these photos, with their high chins and their dark eyes and their movements like hunting cats, seemed more like drawings than real people, like something out of a story come to life. They felt like the guardians of a life she wanted but could never have, a dream she would bottle and hang from the rafters of her heart with bits of twine as she grew up and found a husband and started a family. Looking at them made her soul sing and groan all at once, and she couldn't stop. 

This story is about a transgirl named Nia who is fighting to use the girl's bathroom in her school. The love interest here is a born-again blonde with strict fundamental parents who is secretly a lesbian (Lexie).

This story was too far-fetched and dramatic for me. Might be perfect for teenagers, but as an adult reading it I was rolling my eyes a lot. Russo sure lays on the Dawson's Creek-type drama here. I mean... could things be any more extreme? And seventeen-year-olds... I'm supposed to believe, in this story, that Lexie – in one single day – is fine with I'm sorry, no. Just... no. If maybe we had a whole book to show a slow transitioning of Lexie from someone who is a closeted lesbian, resigned to the horrible fate of being forced to marry a man, have kids, and pretend to be straight for her entire life to someone who is then I could maybe wrap my head around it, but the way it is presented, NO.

I understand what Russo is trying to do here. The juxtaposition of a blonde, shy, private, fundamentalist, born-again Christian who is a secret lesbian getting together romantically and sexually with a transgender POC girl who is very loud and outspoken is tempting. I can understand the appeal of these two very different people getting together, but it is SO UNREALISTIC that I can't tolerate it. I'm supposed to believe Lexie is just suddenly, after ONE DAY, perfectly fine with

I mean, no. I don't believe that. I don't believe any of that shit. It's completely unrealistic, and why I can except some unrealism in my romance, this is too crazy. The short story format also really limits Russo here. She just throws in a few lines about how Nia thinks Lexie has a cute face (even though Lexie is going on TV denouncing Nia's right to use the girls' bathroom!) and a line about how Lexie thinks Nia's skin is soft and she smells good. I'm like, WHAT?! o.O Sorry, this is all way to rushed and sudden for me.

Also, this writing was annoying me.

Lexie balled her fists and looked down at her shoes, alarm bells ringing everywhere as anxiety inscribed itself into her flesh.

Or look at this:


I'm also supposed to reconcile that the male (the straight, confident, popular 17-year-old) says stuff like, “Can you blame him? [Nia's] hot.” is the same guy who refers to Nia in the story as “the transgender.” Not “the transgender girl” or “the transwoman” or “the transgirl” but as “the transgender” like she's a dog or an animal or a weird creature. o.O What...? So, he's respectful enough to refer to Nia as “she,” not to mention confident enough at 17 to declare a transgender woman “hot” out loud in public... but then also just demeans her by casually referring to her as “the transgender” in conversation?! IDK, this seems weird to me. That the same person in the same conversation would have such a disconnect is bizarre to me.

Well, anyway. I had a lot of problems with this story, some that might have been solved by making it into a full-length novel but some I think even a full novel wouldn't solve. 2 out of 5 stars. F/F (transwoman) (only story with transgendered protagonist)

Profile Image for Riley.
427 reviews21.1k followers
January 26, 2018
DNF @ 50%

This just wasn't for me. Some of the stories were cute but they all ended as soon as I got interested.
Profile Image for Cesar.
353 reviews236 followers
June 14, 2019
2.5 stars

I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m probably a soulless husk with a stone-cold heart.


Which, if you met me IRL, that wouldn't be far from the truth.


A bit of an overexaggerating, I know, but I certainly felt like one reading Meet Cute.

I think I’m in the minority where I didn’t like Meet Cute.

When it comes to cute things to me, it varies. Red pandas are cute.


And even some romance is cute. Especially anime romance because let’s be real, anime is better than real life.

Meet Cute should’ve been cute. It has the word cute in it. Except it wasn’t. Rather, most of the stories here weren’t cute. They were entertaining, but not cute. Cute is subjective to a lot of people and in my case, I didn’t find most of the stories to be cute. Don’t get me wrong, there were cute moments here and there, especially toward the end of some stories. But I would be lying if I said this was a cute book.

Meet Cute is not a collection of love stories per say. It’s about the moments when our protagonist meets someone and the cute stuff comes in. I’m thankful that the authors went with this approach instead of making their stories insta-love. It would’ve been a painful read had they done that. At the same time, however, most stories felt too short and didn’t have room for more development for the characters. Yes, it’s an anthology of short stories so I know there won’t be full character development, but even with short stories, you can make a great character in under 30 pages.

What should’ve been cute moments ended up being cut too short or just weren’t cute. Though I’ll admit, some stories did have cute endings where I went: “Okay, that’s cute.”

But enough of me rambling, let’s get onto the review.

Siege Etiquette by Katie Cotungo - 3 stars

The story was told in 2nd person format and even if I'm not a fan of that format, I surprisingly liked the story. Not the best, but I did like the conversation between the two characters.

Print Shop by Nina LaCour - 2 stars

Nina's story was more of a "here's what happened" story and in a romance, it can be cute. But the character just talked about how she got a job, what she's doing, and so on until the end. I really didn't see how the story was a cute romance.

Hourglass by Ibi Zoboi - 2 stars

Hourglass has body positivity and I liked how our character gets the courage to be unconditionally herself. That's the highlight of the story. The rest was boring and it did have a meet-cute moment near the end, but it was meh.

Click by Katherine McGee - 3.5 stars

The concept of being perfectly matched up with someone based on an app does sound like a trope at true romance, but what caught me by surprise was the characters and the end. Alexa and Raden go on an adventure to find Alexa's phone and it reveals some feelings of loss. And the ending was cute. I legit smiled when I got to the end.

The Intern by Sara Shepard - 4 stars

Clara's inner voice and her mini adventure with music star Phineas had me by the heart with how Sara introduced them and with Clara grieving the death of her mother. One thing I like between characters is there is a good flow of conversation instead of it being forced. Clara and Phineas felt natural and Phineas is a sweetheart.

Somewhere That's Green by Meredith Russo - 3 stars (originally it was 2.5 stars but after re-reading some parts for the review, I did like more of it the second time.)

The story of Nia and Lexie is definitely a great one as both are going through a lot. Nia is fighting for bathroom rights to the girl's bathroom and our other main character, Lexie, is struggling with her sexual identity. The trans rep is spot on and amazing how Meredith tackles the issues many trans people face and I loved it. A great story but like the few other stories, it was fine.

The Way We Love Here by Dhonielle Clayton - 2.5 stars

Dhonielle mixes magic and love to make two strangers see how their life will be like if they are truly destined to be. A "what if" story, if you will. The idea of knowing who will be your soul-mate will be is exciting yet terrifying at the same time. Viola's willingness to fall in love is relatable. But it just didn't click with me. Though, I am excited to read more from Dhonielle when The Belles comes out.

Oomph by Emery Lord - 3.5 stars

The title itself made me wonder what Emery had in plan for us and when you do get to the part where Oomph is mentioned, it makes so much sense. This was definitely a meet-cute moment between Cass (Peggy Carter) and Jo (Natasha Romanoff) (It makes sense when you read it.) And again, it had a cute ending.

The Dictionary of You and Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout - 4.5 stars

Hands down, the best one! It's a library romance and that was all I needed to hear. The flirting was cute, their conversations were cute, and the ending was cute in general! Moss, a library assistant, is calling H. Smith who has an overdue book (a dictionary) and instead of Moss asking him to return it, the two talk and lightly flirt with each other. It was so damn cute! 💞

The Unlikely Likelihood of Falling in Love by Jocelyn Davies - 3 stars

Normally I don't like math and equations and all that jazz. But if it involves love and the possibility of true love, you got yourself a meet-cute story involving math.

259 Million Miles by Kass Morgan - 4 stars

What do you get when you put an awkward guy and a social girl in a room for 24 hours for a space program test? A cute story of two people holding each other up. I love socially awkward characters being with someone who is a social butterfly because I think they make the best couples. 😊

Something Real by Julie Murphy - 3.5 stars

If there's one thing I know from Julie Murphy after reading Dumplin' is that Julie can make a regular situation and make it funny.

Say Everything by Huntley Fitzpatrick - 1 star

This was definitely the weakest story in the anthology. I didn't get what was going on at first because this is another story where it's told in 2nd person format but it started off confusing and didn't help set the tone for the story. It wasn't romantic or even cute.

The Department of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon - 2 stars

The Department of Dead Love is a set of buildings in Yoon's universe where each building is in charge of different emotions surrounding love. Our main character, Thomas, is going to one of these buildings to forget the memory of his break-up. I like the concept of the story but I didn't connect to the characters.


It wasn't a bad anthology, but I just wasn't sold on the idea of this meet-cute scenario. There will be people who do like these kinds of stories, but it just wasn't for me.

Thanks for reading my review!

Profile Image for Maureen.
507 reviews4,201 followers
June 11, 2018
All of these stories were PRESH! Anthologies are sometimes not my thing but THESE ALL WERE. MEET CUTES ARE THE BEST.
My faves were Something Real, The Unlikelihood of Falling in Love, The dictionary of You and Me, The Intern, and Click. But I actually really liked all of them? The lowest rating I gave an individual story was 3.5/5 sooooooo ya know.
Profile Image for Larry H.
2,484 reviews29.4k followers
February 11, 2020
4.5 stars.

Meet Cute was an absolutely enjoyable, memorable collection of stories about that first magical encounter.

Boy, this book lived up to its name!! Subtitled "Some People Are Destined to Meet," this collection of 14 stories by some of YA’s leading authors and others who should be better-known, left me in a great mood, high on love and romance.

Each story tells of how two people meet (not always cute right away) and a spark is felt. Some of the stories have LGBTQ and/or interracial themes, one is set in “the future” of 2020, and nearly all absolutely captured my heart.

Just a few of the stories I particularly loved were “Oomph” by Emery Lord, about a chance encounter in an airport; “The Unlikely Likelihood of Falling in Love” by Jocelyn Davies, which told of a statistics student’s project inspired by a boy she spotted on the subway; “259 Million Miles” by Kass Morgan, about two teens vying for a spot on a mission to Mars; “Print Shop” by Nina LaCour, about a young woman who gets more than she bargained for when she starts work at a print shop; “Somewhere That’s Green” by Meredith Russo, which follows an unlikely relationship between a trans student and a religious student who has spoken out against her being able to use the women’s bathroom; and “The Dictionary of You and Me” by Jennifer L. Armentrout, about a library worker who keeps trying to convince a patron to return the dictionary he took out.

This was just a sampling of those I loved because I loved nearly the entire collection. If you like short stories and you’re a sucker for love, pick this one up. It's a great assemblage of some of the amazing talent in the YA genre these days.

Check out my list of the best books I read in 2019 at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-best-books-i-read-in-2019.html.

Check out my list of the best books of the decade at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/my-favorite-books-of-decade.html.

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.
Profile Image for Alyssa.
1,069 reviews837 followers
December 20, 2017
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Meet Cute: Some People Are Destined to Meet by various authors
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: January 2, 2018
Rating: 4 stars
Source: eARC from NetGalley

Summary (from Goodreads):

Whether or not you believe in fate, or luck, or love at first sight, every romance has to start somewhere. MEET CUTE is an anthology of original short stories featuring tales of "how they first met" from some of today’s most popular YA authors.

Readers will experience Nina LaCour's beautifully written piece about two Bay Area girls meeting via a cranky customer service Tweet, Sara Shepard's glossy tale about a magazine intern and a young rock star, Nicola Yoon's imaginative take on break-ups and make-ups, Katie Cotugno's story of two teens hiding out from the police at a house party, and Huntley Fitzpatrick's charming love story that begins over iced teas at a diner. There’s futuristic flirting from Kass Morgan and Katharine McGee, a riveting transgender heroine from Meredith Russo, a subway missed connection moment from Jocelyn Davies, and a girl determined to get out of her small town from Ibi Zoboi. Jennifer Armentrout writes a sweet story about finding love from a missing library book, Emery Lord has a heartwarming and funny tale of two girls stuck in an airport, Dhonielle Clayton takes a thoughtful, speculate approach to pre-destined love, and Julie Murphy dreams up a fun twist on reality dating show contestants.

This incredibly talented group of authors brings us a collection of stories that are at turns romantic and witty, epic and everyday, heartbreaking and real.

What I Liked:

If you know one thing about me, it is that I love a good romance. I am a huge fan of romance, and I am such a hopeless romantic. When I first heard about this book, I knew I needed to read it. Meet cute moments are amazing and I live for them! If you want to read about a meet cute of my own, check out #ManBunGuy on Twitter (and look for my updates -- @Alyssa_Susanna). Not that I'm dating the guy - but it's still an adorable meet cute. It would have made an amazing addition to this anthology. ANYWAY. I really like meet cutes and adorable beginnings to romances so this anthology was right up my alley. Most of these stories were amazing!

I'm not usually one of anthologies for one reason: short stories are always too short. I hate feeling like what I read wasn't complete enough! I don't love being left with the feeling of wanting more (but knowing there won't be more). I will say that some of the stories in this anthology definitely left me wanting more; the short stories were based solely on the meet cute moment, and not the aftermath (i.e. going on a date, dating, etc.). BUT this didn't irritate me because the premise of the book is the meet cute moments, and so I knew upfront that the stories would be exclusively about the meet cutes and not the entire romance/love story. This seems like a simple thing but it makes a difference!

I'm not going to talk about all of the stories because some of them didn't really stick with me and some of them I didn't really like. For the most part, all of them were interesting and worth the read. But some of them were better than others!

I think my favorite was Jennifer L. Armentrout's story, "The Dictionary of You and Me". It involves a girl who works at the library, and has to call patrons when they haven't returned their overdue book. There is one patron, around her age (based on his voice), that has had a dictionary checked out for forever. Every time she calls him, they end up talking about other things... and he never returns the book. She likes talking to him though. What happens next? You'll have to read the story to find out! Honestly it is so cute and it is the type of meet cute that I could see happening to me (meaning, while it is definitely fiction, it isn't so far-fetched). I was smiling the whole time I read this story.

I also adored "Click" by Katherine McGee. This story is set in 2020 and it is about a girl and a boy who uses the Click app. The app matches you with a person that is highly compatible to you, up to the 99th percentile. Alexa is on her way to a date with a guy she matched with on Click, in the 99th percentile of compatibility. She and Raden meet, but then she realizes she left her cell phone in the taxi cab. Raden uses his phone to track hers, and they go off to chase down her phone. I thought this story was so sweet, and the twist at the end made me smile. This one made me think about how we are in this day, with dating apps and matching and whatnot.

Another story I liked was Dhonielle Clayton's "The Way We Love Here". I didn't quite understand what was happening at first, especially in terms of the world-building, but this was the type of story that you needed to keep reading in order to fully grasp what was happening. It isn't set in a purely contemporary world and the world-building wasn't thrown in all at the beginning, so it took a bit for me to understand the what's and how's. The story involves a girl who saves a boy from drowning, but there is so much more to it. It made me smile, it made me feel a little sad, but it also made me feel a spark of hope. This pair had a heartbreaking yet romantic meet cute.

"Print Shop" by Nina LaCour was adorable. A girl gets hired at an old-fashioned print shop, where banners and things like that are hand-lettered. But a mishap with an order happens, and the customer isn't happy. The customer is a high school student like our protagonist. These two "meet" at the very end of the story when the protagonist takes the banner to the customer, but the meet cute is still so cute. And the story itself was intriguing - there was a lot going on besides the meet cute. I liked it!

Like I said, most of the stories were so interesting. I'm not going to talk about all of them because this review would go on for forever and ever, but I liked most of the stories and therefore, I recommend the anthology as a whole. I must give a shout-out to all of the authors who featured diverse characters. There was such a wide array of characters - it wasn't just boy meets girl/girl meets boy. The meet cutes were all so different but the characters themselves were so different. I loved seeing so many different relationships.

Bottom line: I liked this anthology! It was definitely worth the read.

What I Did Not Like:

There were some short stories that I didn't really love, and that's okay! It's an anthology so there was bound to be at least that I felt kind of ehhh about. I'm not going to talk about any specifically because me feeling ehhh about them is very subjective (as with all stories, really). I didn't find anything "wrong" with any of these stories though.

Would I Recommend It:

If you are like me, a hopeless romantic who loves love and romance and relationships, then give this anthology a shot! Meet cutes are one of my favorite aspects of a good romance, and I love what the authors came up with. This anthology is so sweet and heartwarming and made me really happy.


4 stars. Worth the read, in my opinion. I don't usually go for anthologies but this one is as good as it sounds. It would make a great gift! If you live in the USA and preorder the book, you could get some neat buttons from the publisher. Just a thought!
Profile Image for Stacee.
2,709 reviews703 followers
December 6, 2017
I don’t normally read anthologies, but this topic of meet-cutes and all of these fantastic authors, I just couldn’t resist.

I read a couple of paragraphs of each story to decide if I wanted to continue. I read all of the stories except 4 of them and the stories that I did read were fantastic.

Lots of great characters and clever set ups and representation. Some kissing, but looooooots of sweet moments. My ultimate favorite was JLA’s story that featured a library and an overdue dictionary.

Overall, a quick and super cute read.

**Huge thanks to HMH Books for Young Readers for providing the arc free of charge**
Profile Image for  ••Camila Roy••.
161 reviews49 followers
April 6, 2018
RATING: 4.5/5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⠀

One word: Awww💕. Nicely done, authors, nicely done. This is the first anthology I’ve read ever!


[1] THE WAY WE LOVE HERE-Dhonielle Clayton. (4.5/5) I need to check out one of her books ASAP!!

[2] THE DICTIONARY OF YOU AND ME- Jennifer L. Armentrout. (4.5/5) Takes place in a library, do I need to say more?⠀

[3] OOMPH- Emery Lord. (4/5) I love Emery Lord’s stories.💛

[4] 259 MILLION MILES- Kass Morgan. (4/5) Literally squeaked at the last line. So adorable!⠀

[5] SOMETHING REAL- Julie Murphy. (4/5) Cute, cute, cute!⠀

[6] THE UNLIKELY LIKELIHOOD OF FALLING IN LOVE- Jocelyn Davies. (4/5) Can this happen to me? Please?⠀

[7] SOMEWHERE THATS GREEN- Meredith Russo. (4/5) 👏👏👏👏

[8] CLICK- Katharine McGee. (4/5) I definitely ‘clicked’ with this.⠀

[9] HOURGLASS- Ibi Zoboi. (3.5/5) This needs to be longer!⠀

[10] PRINT SHOP- Nina LaCour. (3.5/5) I should go on Twitter more... you’ll understand once you read it.😉

The rest are all 3/5⭐️ reads and I enjoyed them as well. ⠀
Profile Image for Chelsea (chelseadolling reads).
1,478 reviews19.2k followers
February 1, 2018
This wasn’t quite as cute as I was hoping it would be, but there were some gems mixed in so I’m not mad about it.

SIEGE ETIQUETTE by Katie Cotugno - 2 stars
PRINT SHOP by Nina LaCour - 4 stars
HOURGLASS by Ibi Zoboi - 3 stars
CLICK by Katherine McGee - 5 stars
THE INTERN by Sara Shepard - 2 stars
SOMEWHERE THAT’S GREEN by Meredith Russo - 4 stars
THE WAY WE LOVE HERE by Dhonielle Clayton - 3 stars
OOMPH by Emery Lord - 5 stars
THE DICTIONARY OF YOU AND ME by Jennifer L Armentrout - 4 stars
259 MILLION MILES by Kass Morgan - 5 stars
SOMETHING REAL by Julie Murphy - 4 stars
SAY EVERYTHING by Huntley Fitzpatrick - 2 stars
THE DEPARTMENT OF DEAD LOVE by Nicola Yoon - 3 stars
Profile Image for Beatrice Masaluñga.
1,137 reviews1,662 followers
January 4, 2018
Thank you HMH Teen for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review

Meet Cute is a collection of contemporary stories about cute first encouters turned into romance. Not all people enjoy insta-love but once in a while, you'll want it if you're looking for something fluffy. The stories were hit or miss to me but my favorites were written by Katharine McGee and Sara Shepard (both were new to me authors). Overall, this is a nice and likable collection.

SIEGE ETIQUETTE Katie Cotugno - 1.5 / 5 stars
- We're off on a horrible start. I honestly didn't enjoy the story. It's forgettable and not cute. The heroine was annoying and pretentious and the hero was boring. Just meh.

PRINT SHOP Nina LaCour - 3/5 stars
- Definitely better than the first story. A greatly written lesbian story but it fell too short, I didn't feel the spark between the protagonists.

HOURGLASS Ibi Zoboi - 3/5 stars
- Lovely story with strong characters. I like the angsty vibe and the little drama. The first encounter is good but it's not cute. Potentially, it can be a beginning of a slow burn romance. Like the second story, it's cut short.

CLICK Katharine McGee - 4.5 / 5 stars
- GAAAH! This one is über cute and it's exactly the story I like. I adore the concept (matchmaking) and the plot was greatly build-up. I really like it's written in dual point of view so I get to know more about the characters. Alexa and Raden definitely clicked. ;)

THE INTERN Sara Shepard - 4.5 / 5 stars
- Another wonderfully cute story. This one is sweet and touching. Phineas is a thoughtful musician. Love him!

SOMEWHERE THAT’S GREEN Meredith Russo - 1 / 5 stars
- Someone enlighten me on this because the story was messy and confusing.

THE WAY WE LOVE HERE Dhonielle Clayton - 4 / 5 stars
- Bizarre and enchanting. The story will give you all sorts of feels. I didn't expect to enjoy it. The characters seeing their future with so many possibilities. What's important is to enjoy the present time.

OOMPH Emery Lord - 3.5 / 5 stars
- A cutesy lesbian romance. I like the marvel reference here and the girls are just lovely. I had fun reading their conversations in a short period.

THE DICTIONARY OF YOU AND ME Jennifer L. Armentrout - 4/5 stars
- Nothing is more adorable when a story is set in a library. Getting to know a guy who hasn't return a dictionary and wondering how he looks like... ;) So fluffy!

- Hmm.. It was okay. I thought it's a rip-off of The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight .

259 MILLION MILES Kass Morgan - 3.5 / 5 stars
- The male protagonist was adorable! He was sort of a nerd ;) Haha!

SOMETHING REAL Julie Murphy - 2/5 stars
- Sorry but this falls meh. It wasn't cute or whatsoever.

SAY EVERYTHING Huntley Fitzpatrick 3/5 stars
- It's been a while since I've read Huntley Fitzpatrick's book. I like the story but the ending just felt flat.

THE DEPARTMENT OF DEAD LOVE Nicola Yoon - 3/5 stars
- I really like the concept of the story. It's refreshing and original but I wasn't as invested as the other stories.
Profile Image for Erin.
2,953 reviews485 followers
January 3, 2018
The most appropriately named book of the year for 2018 might just be this short story anthology featuring some of the hottest YA authors. Whether you're looking for that first love or you're feeling a bit nostalgic, these twelve stories may just leave you feeling a little more "cutesy" inside.

Thanks to NetGalley for an advanced ebook in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for My_Strange_Reading.
527 reviews83 followers
May 19, 2019
#mystrangereading Meet Cute: Some People are Destined to Meet by Various Authors ⭐️⭐️

Meh. I think after some reflection I'm going to bump this down to 2/5. I just really didn't enjoy it.

If you like short stories, you might enjoy it. If you love 'meet cute' stories, then you will like it, but I just realized while I was reading each story that the 'meet cute' isn't the part of the story that I like. I enjoy the growth of a relationship and seeing the characters grow in their love of one another. In these short stories you only get the beginning--which yes, is the point of meet cutes--but I just found I wanted more.

Great things about this collection: racial diversity and representation, LGBTQ+ representation, and great writing.

Overall, it wasn't my cup of tea but that doesn't mean you might not enjoy it.
Profile Image for Alexandra Elend Wolf.
578 reviews252 followers
August 10, 2020
1.25 stars.

“You made me feel less lonely today. You made me feel less lost.”

How can I properly express and explain how much this book let me down?

The concept is simple enough a compilation of stories written by several authors with just the meet cute of a couple. Romance and fluffiness are in order in every corner and I also get to try new authors. But, well, life can't be perfect and even a perfect concept can be wrongly executed.

I won't say it was completely unenjoyable, because I had some fun with it, but it was really hard to find the things that I enjoyed.

“I know, deep down, that all will end in sadness for us. But for the first time, it doesn’t scare me that my life could also include love.”

One of the biggest problems of this book, I feel, is that it tried to do too much in too short a time and just managed to come out short.

We have about a dozen different stories, each about 4 to 5 thousand words long, a.k.a. short stories. We didn't have enough time to explore a little bit the concepts that we were introduced to. And, yes, the focus of the book is certainly in the flash of the first meeting BUT in the stories I liked it just felt like when I was finally getting into the story it ended.

If they had been a little longer, I don't know, maybe it would have helped.

The worlds of these stories were so vast and beautiful and interesting that I would have given anything to read a bit more. Making the book a bit longer wouldn't have hurt anyone.

The other half of them... I just couldn't get into them. At all.

I tried to, I really did, but the writing style of those just didn't worked at all for me. It felt too weird. To the point that I almost DNFed the whole thing as soon as I picked it up and the only reason I didn't is because I just decided to skip the stories I couldn't stomach.

“… so I decided to find people who felt just as alone as I did. I guess I just thought we could be alone together, or maybe – just maybe – we’d find that we weren’t all that alone, to begin with.”

It was an unfortunate combination. Between not being able to get past many of them and the ones I actually DID like feeling like complete disappointments and leaving me frustrated and dissatisfied.

Dissatisfying. Now, that is a most fitting word to describe this book.

Which is really a sadness because it had a lot of potential.

“People feel so much. Love is so big and it leaves behind a crater. Even when it’s wrong.”


I'm so glad I finished this book because I couldn't read more.

I entered the book with such high hopes that were immediately crushed and dissipated into nothingness at the same time I started reading. Honestly, this is half on me for even hoping to begin with.

Anything I say right now will come out of pure saltiness and pettiness so I'll abstain but... I wish I could get those few days back.


Continuing with my self-imposed rule of no books bigger than 500 pages this month - if needed, preferably less - I finally decided to pick this one up... okay, I didn't decided it per see, but my TBR jar made the decision for me and I'm going along because it suits me.

Also, I mean, it's a bunch of stories from different authors there must be something I will like, right? At least a couple of them if not all.

It may just be the senseless, cheesy, soft, fluff ball that I have been looking for for a couple of months now and that is just a plus to this whole situation.
Profile Image for Selene.
595 reviews134 followers
December 31, 2017
I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Thank you NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s Books for the advanced reading copy of the anthology Meet Cute.

The authors I have read from before are Nina LaCour, Katherine McGee, Julie Murphy, Sara Shepard, and Nicola Yoon.

I can’t wait to read the new to me authors in this anthology that I’ve heard wonderful things about like Jennifer L. Armentrout, Katie Cotugno, Emery Lord, Kass Morgan, and Ibi Zoboi.

I would list the stories I am most looking forward to but there are so many amazing authors in this collection and I can't wait to read all of them.

Siege Etiquette by Katie Cutugno
3 Stars
This short story was written in second person about about a popular girl who was at a house party when the police arrive. She ends up locked in a bathroom with a farm boy from her school. Typical YA contemporary.

Print Shop by Nina LaCour
4 Stars
This story was about a girls first day at a new job where things don’t go exactly as she planned. But through perseverance she is able to overcome her first day. The setting was absolutely adorable.

Hourglass by Ibi Zoboi
4 Stars
This short story is about a girl wanting to get out of a small town where she has always felt like she didn’t fit in. She is her best friends side kick until the day she betrays her.
I loved that this story not only has black representation but it shows how important having different representations in media are!

Click by Katherine McGee
5 Stars
This was about a young adult who recently lost a close family member and “Clicked” with a young man on a new dating app.

The Intern by Sara Shepard
5 Stars
This is a wonderfully adorable story about a young woman who works for her father’s record label company.

Somewhere That’s Green by Meredith Russo
3 Stars
This story has two perspectives. The first is about a high school student and the second is about a transgender girl.

The Way We Love Here by Dhonielle Clayton
3 Stars
This is a fantasy short story that is about how a town finds love.

Oomph by Emery Lord
3 Stars
This is a story about two girls who meet in an airport.

The Dictionary of You and Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout
4 Stars
This short story is about a girl who works in a library.

The Unlikely Likelihood of Falling in Love by Jocelyn Davies
3.5 Stars
This is a story about a girl who takes the same subway train every day to school and the probability of her seeing the boy in the subway train across from her.

259 Million Miles by Kass Morgan
3 Stars
This is a short story about a boy who wants to go to mars.

Something Real by Julie Murphy
3.5 Stars
This story is about two girls competing on a “reality” television series for a date with a musician.

Say Everything by Huntley Fitzpatrick
3 Stars
This short story is typical rich boy, poor girl.

The Department of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon
3.5 Stars
This last story takes place in a world where there are department buildings that are classified by the breakup you’ve had.

This is probably more of a 3.5 Star read but there were a few stories that I loved so I gave it 4 Stars.
Profile Image for Dana.
440 reviews290 followers
October 8, 2017

Aw what a cute, mushy, adorable collection of meet cutes! There is a huge range of stories in here, bursting with originality and tons of diversity. Some of the stories were a little cheesy for my taste, but most left me with a smile on my face, and the characters fondly in my thoughts long after I finished the story. I think this book would make a very cute valentines day gift.

Buy, Borrow or Bin Verdict: Buy

Check out more of my reviews here

Note: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Charlotte Annelise.
169 reviews20 followers
April 19, 2018
This short story collection was really fun to read and I liked that there was so much variety in all of the stories. Some were more heavy on the romance and some put more focus into the overall plot. Romance is my favourite genre, so I am glad this book exists! I was also so surprised that there were four LGBTQ+ short stories, which was great. 

Siege Etiquette by Katie Cotugno - 3/5 stars

Siege Etiquette is about a popular girl at a party who gets stuck in a bathroom with Wolf, a country boy. The police have showed up at her best friend's house and she instructs the party-goers to hide. I liked how easy this book was to read, and I did find it to be cute at one point. I guess it was a little bit stereotypical; the main character actually referred to herself as 'queen bee'. I also am not a fan of second person and in this case it did not seem to be justified.

Print Shop by Nina LaCour - 4/5 stars

The main character in Print Shop, Evie, is starting her new job at a print shop. Although she got the job purely because she thought she wouldn't be working with computers, she sets her annoyance aside and quickly gets to work. I thought this story was enjoyable because the meet cute was original and really kept me interested. I liked reading about someone starting a new professional job because that is very rare and strange for YA. It would have been great to see the love interests interact more but overall it was great.

Hourglass by Ibi Zoboi - 3.5/5

Hourglass follows Cherish, a senior in High School who is disgruntled by the fact she is unable to find a sexy prom dress in her size. She is a curvy and tall black girl with a best friend who can look good in anything. This short story was great to read and I loved that it included a main character who is curvy and tall, which is something many teens will relate to. As the book is about meet cutes, I did expect there to be a bit more romance.

Click by Katherine McGee - 5/5

Click is set in New York in 2020 where a dating app called Click matches compatible couples together. Alexa is paired with Raden, and although she finds them to be incompatible, she is overwhelmed when she realises that she has lost her phone. I loved this story because the concept was unique and the alternate reality seemed really cool. I love New York, so having the two of them run around the city made for a great atmosphere. It was also the kind of meet cute that I have been after this whole. Sidenote: it reminded me of the episode of Black Mirror called "Hang the DJ."

The Intern by Sara Shepard - 3/5

The Intern is about a girl named Clara working as an intern for a record label company. She is asked to show music star Phineas to a psychic and she is quick to say yes due to her boredom at her summer job. This story was not so bad overall but I found the plot to be a bit contrived. There was the typical cute musician and a girl who gets a great internship just because her father owns the company. I wasn't very invested in the story.

Somewhere That’s Green by Meredith Russo - 3/5

This short story is about Nia, a trans girl, and Lexie, a religious girl conflicted by other people's views about Nia. I thought the story had a good premise but it was just written in a strange way. I also thought the romance was unbelievable due to the ignorance by one of the characters.

The Way We Love Here by Dhonielle Clayton - 3.5/5

The Way We Love Here is about a girl living on an island where the gods are able to tell each person who they should be with. I really enjoyed the way this story was written and I appreciated the magical realist elements to it. It was a bit confusing for me at times, which could be due to how short it was and there was little room for world-building.

Oomph by Emery Lord - 5/5

Oomph follows Cassidy, a senior visiting her college friend in New York. She makes friends with another girl at the airport and the two keep each other company as their flight gets delayed. This was my favourite story in the collection! I really loved it. The banter between the two girls was funny and it read like a proper meet cute situation. This story could definitely work as a full-length book.

The Dictionary Of You and Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout - 4/5

In The Dictionary of You and Me, Moss works nights at a library. She is frustrated that someone has not returned an overdue dictionary and calls them weekly to remind them it needs to be returned. This short story was great and again I enjoyed the banter between the two love interests. I thought that the setting of a library was also sweet and the story in general was quite creative.

The Unlikely Likelihood Of Falling in Love by Jocelyn Davies - 4/5

This story is about a math student who comes up with an experiment involving the cute boy she saw one day on the train. Each morning she goes through different scenarios in determining whether fate exists. I liked that this story was quirky and written in a way that made you not question the realistic nature of the events. The main character was really interesting and I thought it was great that she was so interested in math.

259 Million Miles by Kass Morgan - 4/5

In 259 Million Miles, two teens are in the final interview round of moving to Mars. This one had a unique concept and a futuristic setting that I could easily visualise. I thought that the story had intrigue and captured my attention once I understood what was happening. 

Something Real by Julie Murphy - 4/5

This story is about a girl named June who is obsessed with a famous popstar, Dylan. She is invited to participate in a reality show to get a date with him. In the beginning, I made a pretend prediction about what I thought might happen, and it actually did! So I was pleasantly surprised by that. This was a really fun story and even though it was a little predictable, I thoroughly enjoyed it. 

Say Everything by Huntley Fitzpatrick - 2/5

Say Everything is about a girl who meets a guy while working as a waitress. I disliked this story because it followed the romance formula of a guy forcing himself into helping the girl. I couldn't relate to the characters and I didn't really understand her background. 

The Department Of Dead Love by Nicola Yoon - 2.5/5

This story is set sometime in the future where a service exists that helps those brokenhearted over past relationships. Enter the main character, Thomas, who is saddened over his breakup. This story had an interesting premise, but ultimately I was bored over the futuristic setting. 
Profile Image for Aj the Ravenous Reader.
1,025 reviews1,045 followers
March 11, 2020
Total Average Rating of all the Short stories: 3.57 stars

SIEGE ETIQUETTE by Katie Cotugno: 3/5 stars
Wolf and Hailey. The queen bee and the sort of loser. There was a lot going on in the few pages that stirred my curiosity. What happened to her past and what changed with how people treat her. The chemistry between the two definitely exists but alas, it ended too soon. This is definitely an idea that could work really well in a full-blown novel.

PRINT SHOP by Nina La Cour: 4/5 stars
Evie and Lauren. This one has a more solid plot and conclusion. It reads like a complete story. I like Evie’s desire for doing things the old way and reaching out to people outside the computer screen. Ironically though, it is still through social media that she gets to meet a potential love interest.

HOURGLASS by Ibi Zoboi: 2.5/5 stars
Cherish and Mamadou. This is my first read from the author. The writing is good as well as the characterization of Cherish in particualr. I just felt confused by the plot of the story. I understand that it’s a story about a meet-cute but it seems like the beginning wanted to highlight something else but then ended up elsewhere.

CLICK by Katharine McGee: 4/5 stars
Alexa and Raden. I think this is one of my favorites. Again, this is my first read from the author but already, I feel like I’m a fan. The futuristic setting. The Click App idea and the App project Alexa is working on. Raden and Alexa’s impromptu quest for her phone and the irony towards the end. I think everything worked pretty well. If it weren’t for the kiss they shared in the end, I probably would’ve given it five stars. Lol.

THE INTERN by Sara Shepard: 2.5/5 stars
Clara and Phineas. My first read from the author. I find it okay, likable enough but it felt a bit rushed even for a short story. Also, I didn’t feel any real chemistry between the two characters so it wasn’t much of a meet-cute for me.

SOMEWHERE THAT’S GREEN by Meredith Russo: 3/5 stars
Nia and Lexie. I think this one’s pretty cute and quite unusual too. Things just quite escalated quickly and the romance came in too rushed but it was good just the same.

THE WAY WE LOVE HERE by Dhonielle Clayton: 5/5 stars
Sebastien and Viola. Again, this is my first from the author and I thought this one’s really good. I enjoyed the idea that in their world, everyone is predestined to meet his/her perfect match with a constant reminder of how soon they’ll meet the one as marked by the dots on their hands. I enjoyed the fantastical/magical realism element, the possible futures and even the humor. I like that the ending is also very uncertain but it’s satisfying just the same. Another favorite of mine and definitely a certified meet-cute.

OOMPH by Emery Lord: 3/5 stars
Cassidy and Johanna. It’s a cute airport meet-cute and as far as airport romances are concerned, I think this one is quite original. A pretty girl who hopes that this other pretty girl is into girls. I like that it’s about taking chances and overcoming fears. I just wish there was more to the plot though.

THE DICTIONARY OF YOU AND ME by Jennifer L. Armentrout: 5/5 stars
Moss and Tyler. Christmas and Library. Those are like the two perfect words together. Plus it’s written by one of my favorite contemporary authors, it was already a sure winner. Lol. But despite my personal bias, this is honestly one of my favorite meet-cutes. It’s fluffy, funny, swoony and a little mysterious. I couldn’t stop grinning.

Samara and Dev. This one’s quite funny and I really enjoyed it. The story is presented like a research paper. The plot centers on the actual possibility of love at first sight involving stastics and math. Too cute. But well, numbers have nothing on fate.

259 MILLION MILES by Kass Morgan: 4/5 stars
Blythe and Philip. This one’s kind of sad but it’s still cute. I liked the sci-fi element. I enjoyed both the characters’ opposite personality and how they seem to balance each other. Sadly, it doesn’t end up with the possibility of them being together. Still a meet-cute though.

SOMETHING REAL by Julie Murphy: 3/5 stars
June and Martha. It was cute and funny. Instead of competing for a guy, they ended up with each other instead. An unexpected whirlwind romance though with kissing in the end which I guess is no different than the endings of most rom-com movies I watch and still enjoy so it’s all good. Lol.

SAY EVERYTHING by Huntley Fitzpatrick: 3/5 stars
Emma and Sean. I did enjoy it but like the first story by Ms. Cotugno, I feel like this one’s going to be so much better as a full-blown novel. The atmosphere feels kind of a bit dramatic or maybe it’s just the second person point of view which I’m not a huge fan of. Nevertheless, it was still enjoyable.

THE DEPARTMENT OF DEAD LOVE by Nicola Yoon: 3/5 stars
Gabrielle and Thomas. A futuristic world where people have the option to mend their broken hearts through do-overs and stuff. There’s a literal department dedicated to dead love. Lol. I thought it’s hilarious and also kind of beyond the realm of reason and it’s why even though it was quite enjoyable, it wasn’t my favorite.
Profile Image for Romie.
1,073 reviews1,273 followers
January 14, 2018
On average, I gave this book 3.70. It's not bad, but it shows that some of the stories weren't good. Some of them got 1/5 or 2.5, a few got 5/5 but that's because I'm more generous when I rate short stories because I rate both on the story and the potential it has to be a great book.

I would like to say that this anthology still ended up disappointing me ... first because the cover is false advertising, you get a few f/f relationships, but most of them are f/m and there is not one m/m like the cover said. I would have hoped for more diversity, maybe some relationships with non-binary characters.

I was right to have great hopes in Nina LaCour, Meredith Russo and Nicola Yoon because their stories were amazing! I also discovered some new-to-me authors to whom I gave 5/5, like Katharine McGee, Emery Lord, Jennifer L. Armentrout, and Jocelyn Davies. That's something I like about anthologies: discovering new authors and their writing style.

I was extremely pleased with the f/f relationships we had, most of them were done well and warmed my heart!

Mini-Reviews in order:

Siege Etiquette, by Katie Cotugno — 1/5

Honestly I'm disappointed in this one. I didn't like the ‘you’ thing because I think it would have been better if the gender of the protagonist wasn't revealed. Also, I'm not here to read about a mean girl cheating on her boyfriend with cute farm boy named ‘Wolf’ for fuck's sake.

Print Shop, by Nina LaCour — 5/5

OMG YES THAT WAS SO GOOD! Queer girls falling for each other, beautiful language, something poetic with lots of details ... this is why Nina LaCour is one of my favourite authors! I need an entire book about Evie and Lauren falling in love.

Hourglass, by Ibi Zoboi — 2.5/5

I have to admit, I'm confused. This wasn't a meet-cute. Cherish doesn't meet Mamadou until the last two pages and there is no way they'll end up together considering Cherish is leaving New York for Florida .... I don't know, I don't think this anthology was the good one for this story.

Click, by Katharine McGee — 5/5

We need more scientific girls like Alexa and softs boy like Raden meeting and discovering you don't have to be similar to enjoy being together and have chemistry. I want to read more about these characters!

The Intern, by Sara Shepard — 2/5

Well, shit. That was both boring and not good at all: painful to read. Why don't you cover this with another slice of cheese? There isn't enough already.

Somewhere That's Green, by Meredith Russo — 5/5

This story about a transgender girl, Nia, and Lexie falling for each other made my day. I need more f/f relationships in my life. Please.

The Way We Love Here, by Dhonielle Clayton — 3.75/5

It's definitely one I enjoyed a lot! That was such an unusual concept but I liked it! It's nice to read about something so different in an anthology, definitely made me excited to read The Belles!

Oomph, by Emery Lord — 5/5


The Dictionary of You and Me, by Jennifer L. Armentrout — 5/5

THAT WAS SO SOFT AND ADORABLE! I seriously couldn't stop grinning the entire I was reading this story about quiet boy and library girl. I WANT A FULL LENGTH BOOK.

The Unlikely Likelihood of Falling in Love, by Jocelyn Davies — 5/5

That was so soft. And clever. I love the scientific aspect of this story, I loved how the two characters met, it was absolutely adorable!

259 Million Miles, by Kass Morgan — 2.5/5

This story had something, a real potential, but it fell flat. It was extremely sad and this ending was bittersweet af.

Something Real, by Julie Murphy — 2.5/5

Maybe Julie Murphy and I really aren't made for each other. It definitely not her as a person because I follow her on twitter and she's amazing, but maybe her stories aren't for me ... I just found them 'meh' even though this one was about two girls falling for each other after finding out the guy they 'liked' is a jerk

Say Everything, by Huntley Fitzpatrick — 3.5/5

I've read better stories, but I've also read worse. It probably wasn't the best thing ever, but I kinda liked both characters? I probably preferred the moral of the story than the story itself, but yeah, it was nice to read. Not overwhelming, but nice.

The Department of Dead Love, by Nicola Yoon — 4/5

The entire concept of this story was so cool! I like how Nicola Yoon took the time to explain everything about the Department even though it's a short story, it was super interesting! The story in itself has potential and I think it could have been better with a few more pages, but I still liked it a lot!

I'm lowering my rating to 3.5/5 because overall I was disappointed and I didn't like the false advertising on the cover.
Profile Image for shannon🏹.
363 reviews206 followers
February 25, 2018
actually getting more and more excited for this

3.75 out of 5 Stars 🌟

• siege etiquette - 1 star
• print shop - 3 stars
• hourglass - 3.25 stars
• click - 4 stars
• the intern - 4.25 stars
• somewhere that’s green - 2 stars
• the way we love here - 1 star
• oomph - 4 stars
• the dictionary of you and me - 4 stars
• the unlikelihood of falling in love - 4.25 stars
• 259 million miles - 3.75 stars
• something real - 4 stars
• say everything - 4 stars
• the department of dead love - 4 stars
Profile Image for AleJandra.
826 reviews413 followers
March 6, 2018
Solo leí las primeras dos historias, por lo pronto lo abandono, quizá después lo retome.

Siege Etiquette by Katie Cotugno

Wolf <3

Print Shop by Nina Lacour

La historia no tomo el camino que creí que seguiría, lo cual me sorprendió gratamente. Una historia muy linda, LGBTQ, y que además nos enseña mucho sobre el mundo de la Imprenta clásica.
Profile Image for Yusra  ✨.
249 reviews508 followers
Want to read
March 30, 2018
so gbye to the rest of my tbr, I’m ready for some cute ass stories that can take me away from the ending that was Crystal Storm
Profile Image for ambsreads.
656 reviews1,398 followers
January 19, 2018

The Meet Cute anthology was an interesting one. There were so many authors and so many stories. Some I couldn’t wait to end and others I wanted to be extended to fill the pages of a novel. For this review, I’ve tried to review each story featured in this anthology. They’re quite short but I find it difficult to rate an anthology as a whole (3 is what I just figured was the average among these).

This collection definitely was super cute and I do love meet-cute stories. Some definitely stood out. I would recommend this collection though if you’re looking for a short read to fill a rainy day.

I’m not sure this was the best start to the novel. I feel there were so many other ‘meet cute’ stories throughout the novel which were better suited for the first story – ones that would have had a better impact. I enjoyed the writing style and I did gush, but there was cheating and abuse which wasn’t dealt with and only very briefly mentioned that made me feel slightly uncomfortable about the whole thing.

I also hate people who are self proclaimed popular so I had that issue with the main character, since she knows she’s popular. I feel like there were just little facts in the story that, ultimately, didn’t add to the overall story and actually took away from me being able to enjoy it. I felt for her backstory, but she really did ruin it by being a self righteous bitch.

This was the first f/f romance in the book and I loved it. It wasn’t as if it was anything special but the writing itself and the characters the author created in those few short pages were incredible. It shows just how talented the author writing it was.

I was so engaged it the idea of the print shop (especially since it was a queer business). The author didn’t rush a single moment. It all felt super organic and very well written to me. I was completely involved with the main character as she did her best to help the client in need. Print Shop was just super feel good and fluffy, if the idea had been extended into a full novel I would be so happy!

This was when the lack of conclusions in this anthology really started to get to me. I also had a problem with every character but the main one in this particular story.

Our POC MC just wants to escape her small town despite all the waitlists she’s been placed on, her best friend ended up backstabbing her and she’s 6’5 (a queen). Her meet cute doesn’t really start until the end. Quite literally the last two pages or so it happens. So, it felt like a lot of build up which ultimately had a good ending. I just wanted a bit more interaction so I could root for the two characters some more!

Click was one of my favourites in the anthology. The author creates such authentic and deep characters so quickly that had my heart racing. I loved the concept of online dating – it’s hard to meet people and online dating shouldn’t be shamed. I absolutely adored the twist as well.

I’m not even sure what to say, I loved how the MC was a smart girl and the love interest was a good guy. It just made me feel happy and mushy and the overall message was super sweet.

The Intern was flat as heck for me. There was no climax. There was no moment I rooted for the two characters. Nothing. I felt for the main characters as much I felt for the cast of the new Jumajii movie (nothing).

I’m not too interested in ‘celebrity falls for normal girl and she makes him remember his passion’ trope either, which this fell into it. It really did have that classic love cures all vibe too which I am not down for in the slightest. There was also just no connection between the characters, they didn’t know each other long enough for what concluded.

This particular story featured a transgender (male to female) character. Nia is in quite an accepting environment, with her dad accepting her and her friends. The problem is the church and the schools won’t acknowledge her gender in order for her to use the correct bathrooms. A part of this reason is that a girl in her grade has spoken out against Nia on the news on behalf of her church.

To rectify her choices this girl decides to out herself to her peers, recording it so her conservative parents will 110% see it.

My problem with this particular meet-cute was the fact one girl had to out herself. I just didn’t think she was ready to do so from her inner monologue. Maybe I’m wrong, and I completely understand I may be, but it just rubbed me the wrong way.

Now, this was an interesting concept. I’m not even sure if I can really find the words to accurately describe this story or even give my views. This isn’t a contemporary story like the others, this one is straight up urban fantasy with the inclusion of a thing called a love bond. I’m not even sure if I truly understand the concept to explain it either.
The writing style, however, was beautiful. I loved the characters the author was able to create in the few available pages she had. The story was so engaging and one of the few in the anthology that I didn’t pause while reading. I was simply so involved in what was happening on the page. This was yet another concept I wanted to be extended into a novel so I could truly get a feel for it.

This was one of my favourites in the anthology. It was another f/f romance that left me feeling mushy and wanting to scream. The girls pretend to be CIA and FBI agents in an airport while they wait to board their separate flights. It was honestly nothing too original or too out of the ordinary but the authors writing left me desperately grasping for more once I finished the story. It was such a romantic read that I was shocked it wasn’t extended into a full novel.

This particular story was my favourite. It featured a library-based romance that left my heart racing at the sheer adorableness of it all. I know this story had its flaws, obviously, but from the first page I was grinning ear-to-ear and desperately yearning for more. This was yet another story that could have been a novel, the idea definitely could have extended more than just a few pages and I would not be mad.

I don’t have much to say about this particular excerpt in the anthology apart from boring. The whole story was so analytical that I was left confused at all the jargon. I also just didn’t care as soon as math was mentioned. I am terrible at math and as soon as it’s mentioned in fiction or real life I instantly check out.

I also was not feeling the love connection either. This would have been to the quick changes of scenes. We’d get a few paragraphs about something and then a quick change. It made the whole story feel disconnected and the flow felt extremely off.

I was so excited by this story, we were finally getting a male perspective after all this time. I’m not sure why but I expected more male perspectives. I absolutely loved the concept of having to go to Mars to create new life. However, the conclusion of this story left me feeling unhappy since it wasn’t a happy ending. Who allowed this? I was not okay.

Basically, fuck everyone. This story made me feel things and then ruined me.

This did not go where I thought it was going. Honestly. A celebrity dating show where two girls compete in order to score a date with the celebrity on national TV. How nice. Sounds like my worst nightmare. The two girls competing couldn’t be more different on paper either. However, literally everything goes wrong and the end had me definitely like ‘what?’ It was cute though.

Now, this was the definition of mediocre for me. It read the exact same way as the author’s full-length novels and didn’t exactly vary from the plot line either. It was a very forbidden love like with the twist (if you can call it that) thrown in.

I don’t really have much to say. At one point I got some The Greatest Showman vibes but not really. It was just super mediocre and nothing to brag about.

I think Nicola Yoon works much better for me in a short story format than her novels. I really do enjoy her short stories in the two anthologies I’ve read that feature her. It was super engaging, super messy and just overall reminded me of the concept of More Happy Than Not.

It was just a very interesting story and a pretty fun concept of meeting someone who realises you are over your previous partner.

Also, if you're looking to buy any books over at Book Depository, feel free to use my affiliate link! I gain a small 5% commission at no extra cost to you.
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