It Had To Be You – Keris Stainton

Twenty-five-year-old Bea is a hopeless romantic – with a hopeless love life. She’s been single ever since her awful ex broke her heart, and the only thing she gets up to in bed is watching rom coms on her laptop.

When Bea meets Dan, who is basically the man of her dreams, she knows she can’t let him get away. They might not have fireworks, but not everyone can be fighting and (loudly) making up every night, like Bea’s housemates.

But Bea can’t shift the feeling that something just isn’t right. As time goes on, Dan seems less like Mr Right, and more like Mr Couldn’t-Be-More-Wrong… Will Bea be brave enough to change her dreams – and dare to ask for more?

A laugh-out-loud tale for anyone who’s ever dreamt of a fairy-tale romance and found a real-life happy ending, for fans of Giovanna Fletcher, Cate Woods, and Mhairi McFarlane.


The premise of this novel made me smile, I couldn’t imagine having the man of my dreams planned out quite the way Bea did, but I have to admit I admired her certainty.

Bea is a complete and utter hopeless romantic, she imagines the moment she will meet the love of her life and can’t imagine it being anything other than perfect. But sadly for Bea, dreams are sometimes just that – Dreams!

I loved the cast of characters in this novel, Bea’s flatmates made this book into an enjoyable read for me. They were a diverse bunch, who I could absolutely imagine hanging out with and enjoying a breakfast down at Mr C’s cafe with. They all added their own little piece to Bea’s story, and that is probably my favourite part of this book, not the romance but the friendships that stayed with her throughout.

The friendship between Bea and her flatmate and landlord Henry was wonderful. I love a good boy/girl friendship and this one was easy and fun which is what made it special for me. They spent  their days laughing together in the bookshop where  they worked and their game of stay or split was something that really made me giggle. This is where they would place a bet on whether a couple would stay together or split up judging by how they were together during their time in the bookshop.

When Bea begins to question her romantic choice in Dan, I saw her become more real. I found I related to her more, as most of us can say we have been there. I know I certainly have met a guy and been so enthralled by the romance and newness of things that I imagined there to be more to him than met the eye, but that sadly as time went on I knew things weren’t right. I could absolutely relate to her struggles with the should I end it, should I stay dilemma and I was praying for her to make the right choice.

The advice she gets from people around her is wonderful, and I love Mrs C she is easily one of my favourite characters in the book. Her advice as relates to love is wonderful, as she tells Bea that if it was right she would know. It’s so very true, and something I have definitely said to friends of mine over the years, when it’s the right person there might still be difficulties but you will know, something in your heart and soul will know this is your person. No matter what else might get in the way.

Sadly for me I found something lacking in the novel, I disliked Bea in the beginning of the book and although I warmed to her as the novel went on, I just couldn’t break through her shell. I found her a little too naive for my taste. Thankfully the cast of other characters and the humour that is there throughout this book made sure I still enjoyed the story, but for me I sadly couldn’t love Bea as much as I wanted to.

If you want to know more about Keris Stainton then check her out on Twitter. 

Thank you to Bookouture & NetGalley for providing me this copy in exchange for an honest review.



  1. January 4, 2018 / 6:22 pm

    Thanks for sharing, you outlined the book well without giving anything away. I need to get back into reading, though I am more of a Stephan King gal myself… I should really venture out and try different authors.

    • The Crooked Bookmark
      January 4, 2018 / 7:04 pm

      Aww thanks very much, glad you enjoyed the review. I’m not much of a horror girl, but I do have a fair few thrillers on the to be read list. I try to read a variety as I have been surprised by how much I have enjoyed genres I would never have expected. x

  2. January 13, 2018 / 9:52 am

    I didn’t know this book but it seems quite good. I’m sorry that you didn’t like Bea so much, it’s not so good when we have some problems with main characters! But reading your review this book seems ok, the right book when you are in need of something not demanding and sweet 🙂

    • The Crooked Bookmark
      January 13, 2018 / 12:56 pm

      It is a good book & I’d definitely recommend it to others, just for me it as a lack of connection with the main character. Let me know what you think if you pick it up, I love hearing different opinions on books I’ve read, as it’s so much about personal preference. 🙂

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