Beth O'Leary's 10 unexpected meet cutes


To get us in the mood for Valentine's Day, Beth O'Leary has joined us in Caboodlers' Corner to share her top ten books starring characters who accidentally meet the love of their lives. Beth is the author of the wonderfully uplifting The Flatshare, The Switch, and the upcoming book, The Road Trip (our favourite yet!).

Tell us, what are your favourite feel good romantic reads? Scroll down to comment!

Beth O'Leary

"A meet cute is the moment in a film or novel when two people who will eventually form a relationship first meet. It is an absolute staple of my favourite genre: romance. Is there anything more satisfying than seeing two characters stumble across each other in the most awkward, adorable or hilarious circumstances, and just knowing in your heart that they're meant to be together?

Below are some fantastic love stories with unforgettable meet cute moments. And at the very bottom, you'll find the details of my next novel, The Road Trip, which begins with the two main characters quite literally colliding when their cars crash into each other. I hope it'll be as much fun to read as it was to write!"



Get a Life, Chloe Brown

Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert

Chloe pretty much headbutts Red's windpipe when they first bump into each other in this charming, sexy rom com. Chloe is chronically ill and has become isolated over the last few years. She decides she wants to officially get a life, and gorgeous, motorbike-driving Red seems like the perfect person to teach her how to try new things.

In Five Years

In Five Years by Rebecca Serle

Dannie and Aaron meet . . . four and a half years before they actually meet. This ingenious, original love story sees Dannie fall asleep and wake up in a different apartment, with a man who isn't her boyfriend, five years in the future. She writes it off as a weird dream until, four and a half years later, she bumps into that very same man.


The Kiss Quotient

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

Stella wants to get better at relationships but doesn't know where to start. She hires Michael, a male escort, to teach her about sex. But the moment Michael sets eyes on Stella he realises she is very different from his usual clients. This is a deeply original, joyful, steamy love story that will have you beaming down at the pages.

The Happy Ever After Playlist

The Happy Ever After Playlist by Abby Jimenez

Sloan meets Jason's dog before she meets Jason. In fact, his dog leaps into her car while she's driving. Just when Sloan has given up on finding the dog's owner, and begun to fall in love with the pup, Jason reaches out. He was on tour in Australia, had no idea his dog had gone missing . . . and wants him back.

In at the Deep End

In at the Deep End by Kate Davies

Julia doesn't know quite what to make of Jane the conceptual artist staring at her over some very confrontational modern art. It's a classic meet cute – eyes locking across a crowded room – and it's fraught with tension. Whip-smart and filthy, fresh and poignant, this love story is a masterclass in how to combine comedy and depth.


Love Your Life

Love Your Life by Sophie Kinsella

Ava and Matt meet on a semi-silent writing retreat, which means they can't even find out each other's names, let alone get to know one another. A heart-warming holiday romance blossoms nonetheless, but when the two of them return to the real world, things start to become more challenging.

Second First Impressions

Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne

When Ruthie and Teddy first meet, he's about to drive off without paying at the petrol station. Ruthie steps in to help him out with twenty quid, and Teddy responds by assuming she's dressed up for a Golden Girls costume party. But no, that's just how Ruthie dresses. It's brilliant and awkward and paves the way for a seriously adorable love story.

The Wedding Date

The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory

Drew and Alexa first cross paths when they get stuck in a hotel lift together – one of my favourite romance tropes! Though they're total strangers, Alexa ends up agreeing to be Drew's fake date for his ex-girlfriend's wedding in this brilliantly romantic novel.

When a Scot Ties the Knot

When a Scot Ties the Knot by Tessa Dare

If you loved Bridgerton and want to try more Regency romance, Tessa Dare is a great choice. The meet cute in this novel is absolutely inspired: Maddie invents a sweetheart, called Captain Mackenzie, because she doesn't want her family forcing her out onto the marriage mart. She writes him letters, just to keep things convincing. Then one day a real Captain Mackenzie turns up on her doorstep, in possession of all her letters…

Bringing Down the Duke

Bringing Down the Duke by Evie Dunmore

Another historical romance here, with a heroine who is one of the first female students at Oxford University. Annabelle walks right up to Sebastian – who happens to be the most powerful duke in England – while handing out flyers about women's suffrage outside parliament. When one of his companions barges her out of the duke's way, Sebastian catches her in his arms. Swoon.


The Road Trip by Beth O'Leary is out 29th April

Addie and her sister are about to embark on an epic road trip to a friend's wedding in rural Scotland. The playlist is all planned and the snacks are packed.

But, not long after setting off, a car slams into the back of theirs. The driver is none other than Addie's ex, Dylan, who she's avoided since their traumatic break-up two years earlier.

Dylan and his best mate are heading to the wedding too, and they've totalled their car, so Addie has no choice but to offer them a ride. The car is soon jam-packed full of luggage and secrets, and with four hundred miles ahead of them, Dylan and Addie can't avoid confronting the very messy history of their relationship . . .

Will they make it to the wedding on time? And, more importantly . . . is this really the end of the road for Addie and Dylan?

Discover this book and more in your local bookshop.

The Road Trip



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