Meet Me in Berlin

A contemporary sapphic romance

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Pub Date May 15 2024 | Archive Date May 11 2024

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"If we lose each other, then we’ll come back to this spot, on this day, at this time, every year until we find each other."

Casey Miller-James works hard, plays hard and loves hard. She has her dream job in a London art gallery and is busy planning a wedding to her influencer girlfriend who’s determined to have the best lesbian wedding anyone has ever seen. Life is good. So why does Casey feel like her heart belongs to that woman from Melbourne she met in Berlin eleven years ago and never saw again?

Holly Craddock feels like life is passing her by. Her career is going nowhere, and her spare time is spent running around after her unappreciative partner and worrying about her mum’s illness. She longs to rediscover her passion for photography, and she dreams of finding that woman from London who broke her heart in Berlin so long ago. She doesn’t care how brief their romance was, if she’s ever going to move on, she needs closure.

When a work opportunity gives Casey time alone and an unexpected event gives Holly the chance to shape her future, they both find themselves asking, ‘what if?’ After all, the intense chemistry they once shared must mean something. But how do you find someone from the other side of the world when you only know their first name, and the only plan you made to reunite was to meet in a Berlin park in late August at 6 pm, eleven years ago?

Meet Me in Berlin is a second-chance sapphic romance with heart, humour and heat.

"If we lose each other, then we’ll come back to this spot, on this day, at this time, every year until we find each other."

Casey Miller-James works hard, plays hard and loves hard. She has her dream...

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ISBN 9780975611111
PRICE A$6.99 (AUD)

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Average rating from 31 members

Featured Reviews

More than a decade ago, Casey and Holly met in Berlin. They had two weeks, and then they fell out of touch—with only a half-serious promise that they could meet again. Same time, same place, same day…however many years in the future.

Now, each woman is at a pivotal moment: Holly’s career takes an unexpected turn, and she’s realizing that her three-year relationship with Tom is not what she wants out of romance; Casey is thriving at work but regretting saying ‘yes’ when Eva, her social-media-influencer girlfriend (now fiancée), proposed…and livestreamed it. What Holly and Casey still have in common: they can’t get the other out of their mind. They’ve both done their best to move on, but without real success—and so they both find themselves on flights to Berlin, from opposite ends of the world.

This is one of the better romance novels I’ve read in a while. I always have a bit of trepidation about self-published books (even if an author has hella talent, they might not be willing or able to invest the same level of resources for editing, proofreading, etc., that a traditional publishing house can provide), but the desire to read a romance novel set in Berlin won out, and (o happy day) the book exceeded expectations (and, per the author’s notes at the end, did receive multiple layers of professional editing). Berlin ends up being a relatively minor part of the story and setting, but the character development is really interesting. I sort of love that in their initial relationship, Holly moves way too fast (or, starts talking about moving way too fast), and Casey freaks out. It’s realistic, but also, it’s something where 1) Holly sees that it’s too much and 2) they end up talking about it (…eventually). That’s reflective of the rest of the book, too: the characters sometimes make mistakes, but they talk about them—Holly and Casey talk about things; Casey talks with her family and friends; Holly talks with *her* family and friends; said family and friends aren’t afraid to deliver a verbal smack on the upside of the head when (vaguesauce to avoid spoilers, but Casey, I’m looking at you) actions don’t align with best practices.

I’m on record many, *many* times as disliking unredeemable villains, and I was afraid for a while in "Meet Me in Berlin" that Eva would be one of those villains. Tom hits a nice balance; he’s a good (if uninteresting) guy, and maybe in another context he’d be the right long-term person for Holly…but that’s not the context in which she finds herself. Eva is…less palatable…and gets pretty awful at times, but even she (to say nothing of her family) is given some complexity and room to grow, and that’s *always* what I want from romance novels’ stock of cartoonishly evil exes.

Something readers should be aware of: there ends up being a fair bit more about grief (and declining loved ones) in here than I expected, and it packs a punch, especially if that’s something you’ve spent more time than you’d like thinking about. (I’m curious about the author’s first book now, but I understand that there’s also quite a bit about grief there, so I may pace myself.)

Thanks to the author and publisher for providing a review copy through NetGalley.

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Meet Me in Berlin gripped me from the start. Holly and Casey are both lovable, complex characters. I loved how this author wrote flawed characters with grace and care. The book flowed well, was written beautifully, and is a sweet romance. I thought the author did a great job of writing people making mistakes, making amends, and setting boundaries. Jaz is the best supporting character and I loved the family dynamics. There were so many funny, tender moments.

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I have been on the biggest reading lull lately. I haven’t had the interest in reading like I normally do. I read the description of this book and a couple of glowing reviews, and decided to give it a try. I was promised grief and emotion and this book delivered! So many emotions. I love that this wasn’t necessarily the happiest of love stories but there was still a happy ending. The characters grew separately and then together and it was a beautiful journey to read.

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Massive thank you to net galley for providing me with this arc.

I went into this super blind I actually requested it based off of the cover I know you shouldn’t ever do that but oh wow how this paid off in this instance. This story is a love story about how time can’t pull you apart either and the friendship chefs kiss.

Holly was a character who I just wanted to give the world she deserved it, I swear I would give this woman the world if I could! But that’s a side note, the relationship and this idea that even after Eleven years that spark is still there honestly goosebumps, this was such a fun read and I highly recommend to anyone who is wanting something to get stuck into.

Truly how can you feel so in love with characters who only have one book I cannot wait to see what comes next from Samantha!

Please if you are going to read this however just look at the trigger warnings prior as it deals with a few heavier subjects but if you can read it then I highly recommend!

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What would happen if these star crossed lovers ever got a chance to be together again? Casey and Holly’s brief encounter gave them all the feelings in such a short amount of time and left them pining for one another for years. Could a chance to be in the same city again be too much of a good thing? My heart truly felt for both these characters, I could see myself in both at different times in life. A sapphic romance with all the feelings and drama, I love how the author wrote the characters to have life problems that felt very real. I truly enjoyed this read and would read this authors work again

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I really enjoyed reading this, it had everything that I was hoping for from the cover and description. It had a strong romance element perfectly and I enjoyed the story overall. It left me wanting to read more and I enjoyed the use of Berlin. Samantha L. Valentine has a great writing style and made characters that were realistic and glad I got to read this.

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I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley.
I really liked this book that spans during 11 years of the lives of British Casey and Australian Holly that initially meet and fall in love in Berlin when they are 20 and on uni exchange there. They get a couple of great weeks there but then Case panics and flee back to London and they lose contact. They never really forget about each other though and 11 years later they meet again in Berlin, Casey is there on a business trip trying to get away from her fiancé and Holly on vacation after losing her job and breaking up with her boyfriend. They get back together, and they both think they have found their happy ending. However, Casey is not telling the truth right away about that she is still engaged and when Holly finds out she breaks it off and goes back to Australia even though Case says she has now broken up with hear fiancée. It is a lot of back and forth but in the end, Holly realizes she cannot live without Casey and they finally have their happy ending,
It was a great read that I highly recommend. So much love and back and forth between the characters until they finally realize they are meant for each other.

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This book was just beautiful. The way the words helped give the most beautiful visuals, with the description of the art pieces, the scenery and provided the best feelings to make you feel like you were actually witnessing two peoples love story. I cried, laughed, and felt the love heartbreak and lost Casey and Holly both went thru. The synopsis of this book captures it perfectly. I am grateful to have read it as an arc with netgalley.

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Holly and Casey met in Berlin as students, and after a couple of weeks of intense passion, Casey ran away. A decade later Casey is in London and finds herself facing down a wedding with a woman she doesn't really love and Holly sits in Melbourne where she knows it's time to break it off with her safe but uninspiring boyfriend. They both remember setting a date and time and place to meet back in Berlin, and after not talking for a decade, they find each other in that park, under that tree, in Berlin. But Casey still has a fiancé back home and Holly's mom is sick in Australia. Suddenly there is half a world and a number of misunderstandings once again between the women.

This book is really sweet, a well written romance with hilarious characters, a bit of a travel vibe, and some angst. Absolutely going on my recommendation list.

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A second chance romance with international flair!

Holly and Casey meet in Berlin while they’re both exchange students from Melbourne and London respectively and have a whirlwind romance that ends when Casey disappears without a word. The story picks back up 11 years later, with Casey living in London, engaged to vapid influencer Eva, and Holly in Melbourne with her boyfriend Tom. Eva obsessed with chronicling her life online grates on Casey, while Holly's relationship with Tom is far from perfect. When they reunite, they immediately strike up a steamy sexual relationship, DESPITE the face that Casey is still engaged to Eva...

I did think that some of Casey's behavior was deeply questionable, but it wasn't an unrealistic or unimaginable - the flawed nature of the characters added to the story line. It's honestly somewhat refreshing to have a book that deals with messiness - what happens when you re-met your soulmate but you're involved with someone else? The connection between Casey and Holly feels genuine, and the back half of the book does a great job of building out their romance. Overall a solid romance, with great spicy scenes.

Thanks to the publisher, and Netgalley for the ARC!

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This was a gorgeous read with a beautiful and heart-felt storyline. I loved the way Samantha described the scenery as it really made you feel like you were there. Casey and Holly were both beautiful characters that you couldn't help but root for.

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Thank you to the Publishers and NetGalley for giving me an eArc of Meet Me in Berlin.

The novel’s plot evolves around two characters who meet in Berlin during their early 20s and fall in love only to not see each other for 11 years afterwards. It is a dual narrative from the point of view of both women who get their 2nd chance at love in Berlin after circumstances lead them both to be at the park and under the tree where they promised they would meet again.
I enjoyed reading the book, it reminded me of a “chick flick” movie that I used to watch with my mum on movie nights years ago, just with a bit more spice. It was an easy going read but had stakes that kept me on the edge of my seat as I experienced each event with the characters. The writing is not overly complicated which I liked as it gave me a much-needed break from my usual fantasy reads, it was all about the love in the story, and that’s what I also liked about it.
I fell in love with all the characters I met which shocked me as I can be a bit of a hater, but even Eva, arguably the books antagonist, was likable in her own way. All the characters were incredibly relatable and full of flaws. Often when I read romance books the characters are seen as perfect or flawless which takes me out of the book. I liked that Casey made mistakes and was overwhelmed and unsure of her feelings for Eva and Holly. I liked that despite them all being 30 years old, they don’t have their lives sorted or planned really. Holly loses her job at the beginning and still had no idea what she really wanted to do with her life.
The author includes a variety of diverse characters, and it is flawlessly integrated into the story and used to highlight the issues within society that many encounter. It was done brilliantly.
I don’t normally read contemporary romance novels but this is a book I will happily reread.

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I haven't read a good lesbian romance in such a long time, and I think this is my favorite I've ever read! The character growth and relationship between Holly & Casey!!! Incredible. The very real life things still happening in their lives, and the way that they "moved on" but not really. Ugh. SO good.

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Meet Me in Berlin is a very cute second chance sapphic book. I really enjoyed this one. I loved the chemistry between Holly and Casey. They met eleven years ago in Berlin and haven't stopped thinking about each other since. Don't tell me that that is not the cutest premise ever. I couldn't put this book down and absolutely devoured it.
The writing is easy to consume and kept me entertained throughout the whole book.

There is a trope in the book I don't really like which also wasn't executed very well. I won't spoil it for anyone so I won't name the trope but that did make it less enjoyable. It was only a small part of the book so I let it go and enjoyed the rest.

Overall I would recommend Meet Me in Berlin to anyone who enjoys sapphic romances. Its really good.

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Meet Me in Berlin tells the story of Holly and Casey who met while studying in Berlin. After a short, whirlwind romance, Casey leaves Holly with a broken heart. Unbeknownst to Holly, Casey’s heart was just as broken, however, the intensity of the fledgling relationship sent her running and living to regret it.

Years go by, lives are lived, and new relationships develop for both women. However, each eventually realizes that something is missing and, while each is searching for their something, they both end up back in Berlin and reunite.

The plot is cohesive in that it’s logical and realistic, giving the story the impetus it needs. The setting is pertinent, and it is obvious that our author has invested a lot of effort in research to create a setting that is both cosmopolitan and appreciative of the art world.

Both MCs are credible and natural in a way that ensures the reader becomes invested in their happiness and success. I did, however, feel some frustration with Casey and her inability to stand up to Eva, but that is purely on a personal level. Eliciting such a response is a tribute to how strongly her character was written.

The supporting characters were equally as well developed and lovable, giving intensity to the story and strong support to the framework of the MCs. The character of Jaz is a stand-out, she is so unique and loveable that I’d love to see her star in her own story.

I enjoyed this book. There’s enough angst to keep you hooked, and the romance itself is charming and engaging. Highly recommended

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Before getting into the actual review, and a bit of a spoiler, but if you haven’t read other reviews and seen anything about the TWs, there is cheating and lots of discussions around cheating. If you’re not into that, this might be not the book for you. For me, this was one of those “okay it’s TECHNICALLY cheating, but… semantics, kind of” situations. I did message the author and suggest she add it to to TW list (which is listed at the back of the book in the e-version, I’m not sure about print) and said she’d look into adding it for the digital copies since it’s already gone to print, so yay for being proactive!

Okay, actual review time!

11 years ago, Casey and Holly had a two week whirlwind romance in Berlin, with a promise to meet again each year at the same time in the same spot, and let fate take over.

This touched on a ton of topics, and having dealt with many of them myself, I thought they were written so well. Friendship, family, grief, falling in and out of love, priorities, the list goes on. The internal (and external) dialogue and emotions the FMCs both went through felt… in depth? I’m not sure the best way to describe it.

As far as relationships and characters, I hate to say it, but the FMCs weren’t even my favourite pairing. I did love them together, but I loved the other relationships and love between so many other characters more. Casey and Jaz, Chandice, the sister’s parents… I think their love for each other was seriously palpable and SO realistic. I could actually imagine my friends sitting on the couch bantering back and forth while reading the dialogue!

I’ll be honest, even the cheating aspect didn’t *truly* bother me. Was it still shitty? Of course. But I’m reading thinking “mmm okay sure!” Ngl I totally glazed over the history with Lily and Holly so that aspect didn’t bug me - maybe it would on a second read.

Overall, I loved the writing and the dynamics. Those overshadowed any of the more negative features within the book.

Thank you to Samantha and Netgalley for the advanced copy!

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