Any book that has a similarity between Love Actually noted in the title gets a yes from me to read! I love that movie and when I saw that this book featured a similar braided narrative that also included a wedding planner and all the best parts of various rom-coms, well I simply needed to make room on my review calendar for it.
Lately I have had good luck with some well done rom-coms and this one was just begging for me to read it. It looked so so good and I loved the cover. I haven’t read anything by this author before, but after checking out some of her other titles it looks like she has written a couple of other rom-coms that were well received so I was really looking forward to reading this one.
I did read this one in a day and a half. I could have read it in a day but I did have to take a break to do life things but it was a super fast read for me and entertaining as well. I don’t know that it was a five star read but it was a good book that left me excited for more of her works. If you are a rom-com fan than this book really needs to be on your radar!
The author of the novel The Bucket List returns with a witty and heartfelt romantic comedy featuring a wedding planner, her unexpected business partner, and their coworkers in a series of linked love stories—perfect for fans of Christina Lauren and Casey McQuiston.
For the past twenty years, Liv and Eliot Goldenhorn have run In Love in New York, Brooklyn’s beloved wedding-planning business. When Eliot dies unexpectedly, he even more unexpectedly leaves half of the business to his younger, blonder girlfriend, Savannah. Liv and Savannah are not a match made in heaven, to say the least. But what starts as a personal and professional nightmare transforms into something even savvy, cynical Liv Goldenhorn couldn’t begin to imagine.
It Had to Be You cleverly unites Liv, Savannah, and couples as diverse and unique as New York City itself, in a joyous Love-Actually-style braided narrative. The result is a smart, modern love story that truly speaks to our times. Second chances, secret romance, and steamy soul mates are front and center in this sexy, tender, and utterly charming rom-com. (summary from Goodreads)
This book started out so strong. I loved the characters, they were developed, memorable, and likable. There are five interconnecting stories but that it’s immediately obvious but if you read the description and know that this novel follows the Love Actually style of narrative then you will be fine keeping track of everything. Right away I felt invested and loved the chemistry between the characters, and I loved watching them all navigate love and life. But somewhere along the way, things seemed to fizzle out a bit.
The beginning was so solid and strong but as things started to come together and wrap up, I felt like it lost a little steam and just didn’t finish as strong as I had hoped when I first started the book. It wasn’t bad by any means, I just felt that it lost a little of it’s momentum going into the ending. I know that some readers had a hard time investing in the multiple plots because it felt busy. I don’t know that it felt ‘busy’ for me but there was definitely a lot going on in this one and readers should be prepared for a lot of interconnecting stories. This is especially evident in the beginning of the book when characters are appearing chapter after chapter. I was a little worried about where this book was going but overall it connected well.
I really liked the setting and the weddings as a backdrop to the story. I am not a big wedding person, I personally got married in Las Vegas and did not want a big wedding. But I love the idea of being a wedding planner and planning someone else’s big day. So this book was a fun way for me to get an inside look at the life of a wedding planner. I adored the setting and the characters were great and it really did have the Love Actually vibe going on. If you are a fan of rom-coms and like books with a lot of characters to explore and get to know then this book is one you don’t want to miss. As I said earlier, it was a quick read for me and I felt content with how it ended so get it on your radar for summer wedding season!
Book Info and Rating
Format384 pages, Paperback
PublishedMay 4, 2021 by Atria/Emily Bestler Books
ISBN9781982133191 (ISBN10: 1982133198)
Free review copy provided by publisher, Atria Books, in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and in no way influenced.
Rating: 4 stars
Genre: chick lit, romance