It Had to Be You Review
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Romance novels and romantic comedies often talk about characters who meet the man of their dreams. But in It Had to Be You by author Keris Stainton, a young woman meets a man who really has been appearing in her dreams—but, as is often the case, the reality is never really the same as the dream.

The story follows 25-year-old Bea on her quest to find The One. For the past 10 years, Bea has been having the same dream: she’s walking through the park, heading toward same man on a park bench, but she wakes up before she gets to him. Because of the dream, she moved to London—to a neighborhood near the park in her dream. And while her friends think her dream is more than a little bit crazy, it becomes even crazier when she actually meets him.

It Had to Be You is a fluffy romance about a young woman who’s planned her entire life around a blissfully romantic notion. Ever since she was 15, Bea has been convinced that she was meant to meet one specific man in one specific park—and he would be The One. But while that may be the stuff of chick lit and rom-coms, it’s also more than just a little bit sad. Instead of getting out there and living her life and meeting new people and enjoying her youth, she works in a sleepy bookstore, where she spends her days reading romance novels between customers, and then she goes home to her plain rented room to spend the night watching romantic comedies.

Bea is a charming character—a hopeless romantic who’s so adorably naïve that you’ll either want to hug her or shake her (and sometimes a little of both). Her story is filled with the typical mishaps and misunderstandings that that make fluffy chick lit fun, and while Bea herself may be rather quiet and timid, she’s surrounded by larger-than-life personalities who keep things interesting.

Still, there aren’t any surprises here. From the early pages of the novel, it’s all too easy to see how the story will end. And while that makes it light and relaxing, it’s so predictable that it can sometimes be frustrating.

If you’re in the mood for an easygoing read after a long and demanding day, It Had to Be You is a decent choice. It’s definitely a brainless read—complete with cute characters and fluffy romance—but it isn’t an especially memorable one.

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