Cover Image: What Might Have Been

What Might Have Been

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Why did I wait so long to read this book? It was amazing and reminded me of so many of my favorite novels. Really, you need to read this gem of a book.
Was this review helpful?
In What Might Have Been, Holly Miller explores Lucy's life at a crossroads: what happens if she made one decision or another? It's not quite Sliding Doors, because Lucy has ownership of her decision, but haven't we all wondered "what if?" at some point? For Lucy, she is sitting at a bar after quitting her job because she was yet again looked over for a promotion. She meets Caleb and they talk briefly and seem to hit it off, but then she sees Max outside. Max is her "one that got away," her first love. Their relationship ended a decade ago and Lucy didn't quite understand why. They clearly have kept tabs on each other, though, because Max knew she'd be in that area and was hoping to run into her. Lucy's life is at a crossroads: she can either stay and work a meaningless job while she writes a novel (her dream), or she can move to London, where Max is located and she has connections for what could be a dream job.

The book then splits and follows Lucy taking each of those paths. In "Stay," she reconnects with Caleb and works on her novel. In "Go," she moves to London to rekindle her old romance with Max. Some of the same events occur in both timelines, which is interesting, and where Lucy is affects how those events go.

Overall, I loved the format of this book. I liked the two different paths and the information that was shared in each. There was an incident from Lucy's past that I think took a little to long to divulge and work through, but aside from that, this was an enjoyable read (to be fair, I love second chance romances!).
Was this review helpful?
Sliding door stories are some of my favorite ways to manipulate time, so my expectations for this one were high, especially after really enjoying The Sight of You. For the most part I really enjoyed this one, but it dragged in the middle which took away from some of the overall effect of the story. I also found some of the way Miller executed the sliding doors device got a little too confusing. Despite those things, I thought the ending to be very satisfying and enjoyed it overall.
Was this review helpful?
This wasn't my cup of tea. I liked the idea for the story but not the story itself. Probably wouldn't be inclined to recommend unless someone was looking for this exact storyline.
Was this review helpful?
I'm always, always a sucker for a "what might have been" story, where the book splits into two timelines and plays out what might happen to the MC depending on a certain decision they make. In WHAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN (appropriately named), Lucy has a decision to make once she abruptly quits her job. Should she STAY in her beachside hometown, live with her sister, save money, and pursue writing her novel full time? Or should she GO live with her friend in London in her spare room and take on the cushy advertising job she's also dreamed about?

Lucy runs into her ex Max, who she believed was her soulmate before he inexplicably broke up with her toward the end of college, and this spurs her decision-making. In the STAY timeline, she decided to put Max in the past and pursues the cute guy Caleb she also met the same night. The two have to work through some things, like Caleb's pending divorce, but she finds herself very happy pursuing her writing dream and spending more time with her sister and nephew. In GO, she reconnects with Max and the two have to try to figure out how to make their relationship work once some major secrets get revealed.

These books usually go one of two ways: the two timelines result in the MC ending up in the same place and/or with the same guy regardless of their decision, OR they end up in two very different places but equally happy. How big of a role does fate or destiny have in our lives? I won't spoil this one but I will say the ending surprised me. I had a clear favorite timeline (STAY) throughout the entire book and I didn't end up enjoying GO very much at all, which is why this book is not rated as highly as it could've been.

All in all, this was a pretty unique take on the parallel lives story and I would recommend it to readers like me who enjoy this kind of thing.
Was this review helpful?
Sign me up for anything Holly wants to write. This book had some themes and circumstances I've read before but  put together in a perfectly unique way. I've not read a book quite like this and I need more of Holly's writing. The only book it really puts me in mind of is The Two Lives of Lydia Bird, but, even still, they're so different.
In this sliding doors romance, the reader experiences three years of Lucy's life following what becomes a critical life decision. Should she stay or should she go? In both, Lucy experiences hardship, loss, joy, and love.
Holly explores and expounds on the "what if" with fated love and destiny intermingled with the free agency of choice. Both stories sucked me in, broke my heart, and pieced it back together. It's not the typical love triangle, but I definitely had a favorite love interest and life playout throughout the whole of the book. I love that Holly's ending gave me the lovely bow tie at the end that I was hoping for.
Thank you to Putnam and Netgalley for the advanced copy. All thoughts in this review are my own.
Was this review helpful?
Wow. Wow wow wow. That is it, that is my entire summary. I read this book in under 24 hours... I was so invested from the start. The way this is written is so incredibly unique following two different storylines but somehow still magically intertwining. I just... I'm speechless. I loved this book truthfully. I have had books make me reflect, make me feel many emotions, and a few that have made me teary-eyed. But this book made me SOB. This one will stay in my head for a long long time and I will be recommending it for a long time. Truly beautiful.
Was this review helpful?
Absolutely lovely title. I enjoyed it very much and look forward to discussing it with my patrons. I will be adding this author to my "watch" list!
Was this review helpful?
I loved the premise of this book. It’s very similar to sliding doors, which life will she choose, fate as the theme, etc. etc. There was quite a bit of slow paced plot in the middle that I really wished had a little more conflict. Overall, I was happy I read it but it wasn’t very memorable.
Was this review helpful?
📄 Lucy quits her job after her boss hires someone new for the position she’s been promised over & over again. At a crossroads, Lucy must decide between staying in her hometown and finally writing the novel she’s always had in the back of her mind—where she’s just hit it off with Caleb—and moving to London to pursue her dream job as a writer at a marketing agency—where Max, her college sweetheart & one-who-got-away, lives. Branching off from the day Lucy quits her job, meets Caleb, and runs into Max for the first time in ten years, the story follows both of Lucy’s choices—jumping back and forth between her hometown of Shoreley and London; between writing a novel and her dream job; between Caleb and Max. 

💭 I really loved this book. Life and relationships have so many twists and turns and complications — it was so interesting to see how Lucy’s life & those around her differed in each choice she had made. It was heartwarming & heartbreaking simultaneously. 

👉🏻 This had such an interesting concept and was written beautifully. I also always love reading books written by British authors. There are some potential triggers with this one—so research those before you dive in.
Was this review helpful?
There is no exaggeration when I tell you I have been waiting since the moment I closed the last page on The Sight of You to read more from Holly Miller and the second I got my hands on What Might Have Been, I absolutely devoured every single word. With a unique ability to blow me away emotionally, Miller strikes again! Now, bring on book 3!
Was this review helpful?
This sliding door romance was just so lovely, I wanted to give my kindle a warm hug. I loved wonder what if along side the main character and feeling all the many emotions. It was so beautiful and bittersweet. I loved the complicated and layered emotions. Perfect for a bookclub or buddy read!
Was this review helpful?
I think this is what I wanted The Midnight Library and The Two Lives of Lydia Bird to be. 

Lucy has two choices: move to London and take a new job or stay in Shoreley and work on her novel. This book tells of the separate stories of each of those choices. I really enjoyed this book. It was like a Twist-a-plot / Choose Your Own Adventure type that explored the ramifications of the choices we make, big and small, in our daily lives. 

Thank you to PENGUIN GROUP Putnam and Netgalley for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest feedback.
Was this review helpful?
This was an interesting story of what might happen if you choose a certain path. The story tells two paths for Lucy.after she quits her job. Stay in her hometown and write the novel she has always wanted to and see where things go with Caleb a guy she meets. Or Go to London for a dream job and see where things go with her ex Max.  Loved this one.
Was this review helpful?
This book kept my interest and the interesting storyline was captivating, but it also felt a bit like the movie Sliding Doors without as much of the conflict. I would've liked to feel like there was more at stake in both stories, however I did enjoy it and read it rather quickly.
Was this review helpful?
This book kept me on my toes. The premise is so interesting, once I got into the rhythm of the writing, I could not put the book down.
Was this review helpful?
Sliding-door style romances are always fun, so I was stoked to read What Might Have Been by Holly Miller. 

Lucy's story is one that really pulled me in from the start. Although I wanted her to give in to the nostalgia from her past and fix things with Max, a huge part of me thought Caleb was the one for her. I think the beauty of these types of stories is that no matter who you are, you can relate. 

The book dragged a bit in some parts but it was ultimately a great read. 

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
Was this review helpful?
This book takes what Taylor Jenkins Reid did in Maybe in Another Life (one of my all time favorites), and somehow makes the story very unlikable even if you could push aside the copying. Due to the copying, I won’t be picking up anything else by this author again, either.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to NetGalley, G.P. Putnam's Sons, & Penguin Publishing Group for the opportunity to read and review this book before it's publication date! This in no way affected my review, opinions are my own.

I'm going to start this review with what I think is the most compelling thing I can say: I remembered loving this book, but wanted to go back and reread a couple portions (reviewing a book almost 3 months later is bad news bears). "Reread a couple portions" turned into re-reading entire chapters throughout the book for almost an hour, and now I want to see who does the audio for this because honestly I just want a full reread. It was THAT. GOOD.

This was a sliding doors type book and I LOVE IT. On the night Lucy quits her job, she meets one new guy & runs into one old flame - the next day she is presented with two different career options (at home or in London), one of which would keep her in contact with new guy and the other with old flame - so which does she choose? Does she stay or does she go?

Told in alternating chapters with each section titled "Stay" or "Go," we follow Lucy as she chooses two different life paths and men, and see not only what changes in her life as a result of those choices, but also what stays the same.

I love, love, loved this story and these characters. There are difficult topics but I think they are handled with care and sincerity (see content warnings) and also immediately upon finishing I ordered a physical copy of both this book and her debut (The Sight of You). So yeah, I think I would say this is a definite recommendation!

These books make EXCELLENT book club books (and if you liked this one, make sure to check out Taylor Jenkins Reid's Maybe In Another Life!)
Was this review helpful?
okay. i'm gonna be honest with you. this book was not it for me. i really wanted to like this book, but it did not work out for me. i'm so sad about it. but thank you to netgalley for letting me read this one early!!
Was this review helpful?