Title: This Time Next Year
Author: Sophie Cousens
Publication Date: Dec. 1, 2020
Publisher: Putnam Books
Synopsis: In this warm-hearted love story for fans of One Day in December, a man and woman who were born at the same hospital on New Year’s Day meet on their thirtieth birthday and discover the many times their paths almost crossed before.
Down-to-earth baker Minnie Cooper knows two things with great certainty: that her New Year’s birthday has always been unlucky, and that it’s all because of Quinn Hamilton, a man she’s never met. Minnie and Quinn were born at the same hospital just after midnight on New Year’s Day thirty years before, and not only did he edge her out by mere minutes to win the cash prize for being the first baby born in London in 1990, but he stole the name she was meant to have, as well. With luck like that, it’s no wonder each of her birthdays has been more of a disaster than the one before.
When Minnie unexpectedly runs into Quinn at a New Year’s party on their mutual thirtieth birthday, she sees only more evidence that fortune has continued to favor him. The handsome, charming business owner truly seems to have it all–including the perfect girlfriend. But if Quinn and Minnie are from different worlds, why do they keep bumping into each other? And why is it that each frustrating interaction somehow seems to leave them both hoping for more?
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, including Amazon, and I may earn a small commission, at no cost to you, if you purchase through my links.
This Time Next Year is a charming contemporary romance that explores the profound impact two families and two people have on each other’s lives over a span of a few decades. The story focuses on Minnie Cooper (yes, really) and Quinn Hamilton, a man and a woman who were born at the same hospital on New Year’s Day. Not only was Quinn born before Minnie, but he also stole the name she was supposed to have. Thirty years later, they meet by chance and can’t deny the connection between them. Do these chance encounters have the potential to lead to more, or will past grudges and new obstacles prove to be too complicated?
Minnie is a great protagonist! She is kind, compassionate, a really good friend, and a bit of a mess. I love her ambitious desire to share her love of food and cooking while helping those in need. She knows what she is passionate about and strives to achieve her goals. She also learns some humility, especially in regards to Quinn, who she grossly misjudges. Sometimes it takes losing everything to realize what you really want, and I think Minnie does just that.
I also love the slow-building romance between Minnie and Quinn and wholly rooted for their happily ever after. They have many swoon-worthy moments, as well as some humorous mishaps. Further, the flashbacks to different parts of Minnie and Quinn’s lives when their paths cross, unbeknownst to them are fantastic.
However, this isn’t solely a love story. It’s a story about families and growing, learning and adapting, understanding others and yourself, and letting go of the past while embracing the future.
There are many wonderful characters, messages, and plotlines, and I particularly like Minnie’s quirky friends and co-workers. They are comical and sweet, and they always have her back. I also love Minnie and Quinn’s mother’s stories. Both recall the same experience of giving birth together on New Year’s Eve. However, they leave with such different feelings all because of miscommunication. It was interesting to see how their stories evolved and came around full circle.
Quinn and Minnie have relationship and family issues, though their problems are very different. I like how the author tackles family issues as well as mental health concerns. Anxiety, agoraphobia, commitment issues, and more affect the characters’ lives, and the author doesn’t shy away from these realistic situations. Minnie and Quinn put a lot of pressure on themselves, especially when it comes to family, which I also found really realistic and understandable.
I enjoyed the book and think it will appeal to readers who like contemporary romance with great characters, witty banter, and a lot of heart. Thanks so much to NetGalley, Putnam Books, and the author for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
Better to be hated for what you are than loved for what you’re not.
I find places like this so packed with memories. Visiting them can be like opening a memory jar. You take off the lid and the smells and sounds of a place hit you, unlocking things folded away deep in your brain.
This is a great story for readers who like contemporary fiction with great characters and a fantastic romance!