BLOG TOUR: The Meeting Point by Olivia Lara
Hello everyone, and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Meeting Point! If you’ve visited my blog before you’ll know I don’t often read adult romances, so I’m bringing you something a bit different today. There was just something about this one that called to me, and when The Write Reads announced that they were running the blog tour for it I couldn’t resist signing up.
It’s time to buckle your seatbelts, because I’m about to drive you past Synopsis City and all the way to Review Road!
What if the Lift drive who finds your cheating boyfriend’s phone holds the directions to true love?
‘Who are you and why do you have my boyfriend’s phone?’
‘He left it in my car. You must be the blonde in the red dress? I’m the Lift driver who dropped you two off earlier.’
And with these words, the life of the brunette and t-shirt wearing Maya Maas is turned upside down. Having planned to surprise her boyfriend, she finds herself single and stranded in an unknown city on her birthday.
So when the mystery driver rescues Maya with the suggestion that she cheers herself up at a nearby beach town, she jumps at the chance to get things back on track. She wasn’t expecting a personalised itinerary or the easy companionship that comes from opening up to a stranger via text, let alone the possibility it might grow into something more…
Come on this 5* journey to love, laugher and back again, perfect for fans of Mhairi McFarlane, Josie Silver and Sally Thorne.
Do you see why I had to say yes to being a part of this blog tour? For someone who doesn’t read a lot of adult romances, The Meeting Point seemed like it was going to have a lot of intrigue, adventure and soul-searching.
I was conflicted about how to rate The Meeting Point, but I ended up settling on 3 stars. Although I loved the first half of the book – and it was undoubtedly 5 star material which had me kicking myself for not being a bigger romance reader! – the second half of the story ended up disappointing me.
At the beginning, The Meeting Point follows Maya as she is led around Carmel by the mysterious Lift driver on the other end of her phone. We get to live through her reaction to discovering David’s cheating ways – disappointment, but not as much disappointment as she was expecting to feel – while feeling the same levels of hope and wonder at the chance to start her life again in her late 20s. I’m currently in my mid-20s, and it sometimes feels as though my life is mapped out in front of me, so it was nice to put myself in Maya’s shoes and imagine ‘what if?’.
However, the second half of the novel follows Maya’s return to Carmel after she discovers a local author named Ethan is releasing a book based off of her magical, life-changing day. Ethan – a bestselling romance novelist – adapts his friend’s story into a novel, and Maya feels cheated that her tale has been stolen from her. Not only that, but Ethan refuses to tell Maya who the mysterious ‘Max’ is, making it feel impossible for Maya to ever have her happily ever after.
This was where things started to fall apart for me. I found it all unbearably predictable, and I wanted Olivia Lara to get on with things! I was rooting for the main couple, but I wanted to see more of them together as a couple, rather than slowly but surely finding their way towards each other. If you’re a fan of a slowburn romance, this is the one for you, but as a romance newbie this was a bit too much ‘slow’ and not enough ‘burn’.
I enjoyed the wider cast of characters, but found them far too interchangeable. Their voices weren’t too distinctive to me. Although, I wouldn’t be opposed to reading a spin-off story following Ethan’s sister Celine on her journey to becoming a car mechanic, because she was a lot of fun to read!
Unfortunately The Meeting Point wasn’t the one for me, but if you’re a romance reader who enjoys slowburn romances, books about books and gorgeous beachside settings, this is definitely going to be a new favourite for you.
About the author:
As a child, Olivia not-so-quietly ‘observed’ (AKA bothered with countless questions) her grandfather – who worked for the biggest publishing house in Romania – edit hundreds of books. And when he wasn’t editing, he read. Everything, all the time. Just like her father, who wrote short sci-fi stories, and was set on building the largest library she’d ever seen and her mother who’s never found without a book… wherever she goes. Her love for words came naturally, and after studying marketing, communications & photography, Olivia worked as a journalist for a newspaper and news television network in Romania.
An unapologetic citizen of the world, she spent a few years in Greece, Sweden, France, before settling in sunny California with her photographer husband and young daughter, where she works in marketing and writes. Oh, and let’s not forget the ever-growing menagerie that completes the family: Pumpkin, the Maine Coon mix, three black cats and a siamese kitten.
When she’s not writing or thinking about writing, she reads (across genres), watches old movies and collects vintage books, vinyl records, and eerie paintings. She loves traveling (and can’t wait until she can do it again, safely), swimming, biking, hiking and of course, photography.
Someday in Paris, her debut, published by Aria Fiction/Head of Zeus in May 2020 became a B&N, Apple, Kobo and Amazon Top 100 Bestseller and was shortlisted for the Romantic Novel Awards 2021. Her second novel, The Meeting Point, a contemporary romcom set in Northern California, is set to be published as an eBook on September 2nd 2021 and in paperback in December 2021 (UK) and March 2022 (US).
Once again, I’d like to thank The Write Reads for letting me take part in The Meeting Point blog tour. I’m sorry that this wasn’t a new favourite for me, but I definitely have a couple of friends I’m going to be recommending it to!
Thank you for visiting my stop on The Meeting Point blog tour, and I hope I’ll see you again very soon,