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Another avenue to let out my inner book geek? Squee!

Meant to Be

Meant to Be - Lauren Morrill Oh. Em. Squee! This book could not have been any more cute. And adorable. And delightful. It was just...FUN! Did I mention adorable? I'm not a huge reader of the genre so I was hoping and praying that I loved the story. It was all I was hoping for, and more than I expected. Maybe this is proof that I need to read more contemporaries, and thanks to Lauren, I now have a LIST to get through.Every once in a while though, I enjoy a fun romantic romp through London. I LOVE LONDON. Love. It. Hard. Core. I was really excited for the setting, and Lauren whisked me away to some of my favorite parts of this European mecca. I love when I know a setting by firsthand experience because it doesn't happen often. It was a GREAT setting for a group of students to visit on a study abroad trip. Hey, that's what I did! It was for social work though, but learning the history of our social welfare system (we adopted the laws from there, ya know) was awesome. These kids, however, learned about ART and CULTURE and SHAKESPEARE! Yahoo!Speaking of the characters, they were so full of awkward awesome! Julia is a quirky book nerd who wants to visit Shakespeare's home in London because it is of personal significance to her family. She was a total Type A personality who had all her maps and city guides with page tags throughout and notations in the margin. I loved being in her head and immediately adored her because of her OCD organization. Did I mention she was a book nerd? :)I have my own e-reader, but I hardly ever use it. I need to fold down pages and flag passages with sticky notes. I need to experience books, not just read them. I never go anywhere without a book in my bag, and to travel across the ocean, I'd packed more than my fair share.Her arch nemesis, Jason, was also on this study abroad trip, much to Julia's displeasure and loathing. Jason was a loud mouth, popular, spontaneous classmate who teased Julia until she was blue in the face with anger and annoyance. However, it was never malicious teasing. There is another guy back home that Julia is pining away for. She has random texts with her best friend back home on the "emergency only" phone provided by her teacher. She also has a text convo with a hot guy she meets her first night in London when Jason drags Miss Play-By-The-Rules out past curfew to a party with people they don't even know.  The most likable quality of Jason, for me, was that he got Julia to open up and try new things. He got her out of her comfort zone and urged her to open her eyes to other beauties of the world beside literature and post-it notes.I loved the authentic feel of these high school characters! Their antics, angst and silly decisions felt real and not contrived. I loved that Julia had this interesting concept of Meant To Be because of how perfect her parents were in her eyes. She thought the guy back home was her MTB, who makes an unforgettable appearance in London. But I think a week in London with a carefree, spontaneous boy who is full of life can really muck up your self-defined destiny.Favorite QuoteI don't use airplane bathrooms. As a rule. And I really don't like breaking rules. (It's kind of one of my rules.) I mean, if I'm going to plummet to my death, it's not going to be with my pants around my ankles.