Publisher : HMH Books for Young Readers
Genre : Young Adult | Contemporary (mostly)
Page Count: 319
Synopsis : 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. (From Goodreads)
*I received an eArc of this book from the Publishers through Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*
Oh man, this was such a disappointment! It’s been a while since I was flat out disappointed by a book and I DON’T LIKE THIS FEELING!!! I had really high hopes for all the cute Meet Cute could deliver since…the title says it all and although a few stories delivered on the cute, most of them were just alright and a few I even disliked. Let’s add to that the fact that it took me way too long to get through the 63% I read, and by the time I got to that point I was already done and ready to move on to another book. So yeah, I didn’t finish it and my rating is based on the nine stories I did read.
I love the concept of Meet Cute. An anthology about how people first meet? Sign me up! But for most of the stories, I just needed…more. And the more changed with every new story, aside from maybe two or three, I found the rest really lacking which didn’t really make me want to read the few I had left. The one thing I really loved is that the ending is actually the beginning and that makes it so so full of possibilities.
The way, I’m gonna do this is review every story separately in a few sentences? Because I don’t really see any other way of doing this.
1- SIEGE ETIQUETTE – Katie Cotugno. (1 star)
I’m going to be real here, this wasn’t a good note for me to start the book on because the whole story felt weird to me. First of all, it was written in second person and I’m not a big fan of that, then there’s the issue of the writing feeling choppy so it didn’t flow well and that can get tiring really fast. But the biggest issue here for me is that the story didn’t bring any meet cute to the table, the girl involved in it meets a guy and… cheats on her boyfriend with him. There’s nothing cute about that, even if people are destined to meet or whatever.
2- PRINT SHOP – Nina Lacour. (3 stars)
This one I actually really enjoyed. First off, it’s f/f and soooo cute although the actual meeting part doesn’t happen til the very end, the calls and twitter DMs gave me the fuzzies haha. Add to that the fact that Nina Lacour’s writing is really pretty and soft, and that made it easy for me to get invested in the story. The only downside is that I wanted more by then end, just a scene or two where the girls are actually in the same place and interacting.
3- HOURGLASS – Ibi Zoboi (3.5 stars)
What I liked most about this story is that it wasn’t about the Meet Cute moment (which ultimately felt out of place in the anthology). It was about a girl empowering herself BY HERSELF, getting out of a toxic friendship, getting out there, trying things for herself she wouldn’t normally do and just all around loving and standing up for herself. And I really appreciated that. The MC is also a tall fat girl and we don’t really see many of those in YA so that was great to see as well.
4- CLICK – Katharine McGee (4 stars)
This story is the first one I truly loved. It’s so fast paced and fun to read and I also like the futuristic (ish) concept. The author managed to get the perfect balance between people who are meant to meet and technology, she made it a case of right person, right timing and that was freaking adorable, especially considering how both parties handled it. It was stories like this I pictured when I heard of the anthology.
5- THE INTERN – Sara Shepard (5 stars)
This is another one I really really really loved. Another fast read with people that clicked right away, great banter and the cutest moments. But what I liked most of all is how it wasn’t just fluff, it deals with loss and grief as well as loneliness -and what if feels like to be surrounded with people but still feel lonely- and how hard it is to deal with all of that and still move on with life and function. I was moved by how well everything was handled as well as by how hopeful the ending was.
6- SOMEWHERE THAT’S GREEN – Meredith Russo (4 stars)
I. LOVED. THIS. The story revolves around two girls and while still having some fluff, it’s on a more serious note which I ultimately appreciated. The first girl is trans and the author tackles trans issues and struggles especially in a high school environment. Through the second girl, the issues discussed are more on the being gay and religious front and I really liked that and how in such a short amount of time that girl was able to unpack some internalized biases. Although, I’ll have to say that that ultimately made it very rushed and slightly unrealistic.
7- THE WAY WE LOVE HERE – Dhonielle Clayton. (1 star)
I’m not going to sugarcoat this one. This story was a mess, a very aromisic mess. The writing is pretty, the setting is whimsical and has a lot of potential, if only the premise at its core wasn’t problematic. Let me lay it all out for you: Girl doesn’t think she’ll ever fall in love/doesn’t want to fall in love. Girl meets boy. Girl changes her mind. This is literally the thing that aros (as well as aces) get told the most “you just haven’t found the right person yet” and… a story was made out of it.
The whole thing made me uncomfortable but there were some sentences that were straight up aro-antagonistic like: “A life without love is impossible” or “The gods doomed my future to a life without love”. Not gonna lie, this story put me off of the whole anthology.
8- OOMPH – Emery Lord. (4.5 stars)
This is one heck of a nice story. It’s a matter of a few hours, an Airport meet and how a stranger can impact someone’s life with kind words and a listening ear. The girls meet while waiting to board their respective planes and the conversation sparks immediately, it’s so light and witty with lots of fun back and forths and dorky jokes. And I liked the ending. Especially the ending. It’s so full of possibilities and let my mind wander to a great number of hypothesis.
9- THE DICTIONARY OF YOU AND ME – Jennifer L. Armentrout. (2 stars)
In theory, this sounds like any bookworm’s favourite read because MEET CUTE!!!! AT A LIBRARY!!!! But in my eyes, it failed to deliver. Just…Nothing really happened? Granted, the actual meet was cute, but everything that led to it didn’t really woo me or anything. It was just talking on the phone and wondering who mysterious stranger is.
This ends my review, folks! Because I didn’t read any of the other stories. I started the next one and made it a couple pages in before getting really annoyed with how long it was taking me to read it as well as the fact that I felt like it was putting me into a slump so I decided to stop reading and go on to my next reading adventure. I hope you enjoy Meet Cute more than I did.
That’s it until next time.
Did you read Meet Cute? If so, what did you think?
Which story was your favourite?
Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.